He wears a white coat, he is fabulously smooth, clear, and tan, he is handing me the mirror, He is asking about my face, what I see here at 1000 Park Avenue in my fiftieth year. “Take it from the top,” he says, smiling, and I smile, too. This is what I came for. In the brow — well, honestly? Worry, anger. Ringing the eyes, exhaustion, even fear, a bruise. Around the mouth, reproach and bitterness. And framing the chin, disappointment like a flat tire. He nods, happy. We see it together: not age, but emotion! Now I understand why no one says, “You look old.” No, old is not the problem. It is anger, fatigue, bitterness. It is that it has been such a long day. That evening in front of my own mirror, I reflect, a little bewildered, on what I have seen — this constant announcement to strangers that I have spent much of this last, long night up crying. For any woman in her right mind what I am considering is more taboo than answering an S&M personal, but damn! I am tempted. Vanity? Buying back youth? No, but something youth never questions: the ability to walk into a room once more, with one’s own hard-earned secrets secret.