April lied about her age.
When she was 14 she said she was 15; and she got the job as counselor at summer camp.
Now things were different; she lied the other way.
She even lied to the vet about her dog’s age — she was so used to lying.
She said Maya, her Shih Tzu, was eleven when she was truly thirteen.
Maybe she just didn’t want Maya to be too close to the age when most Shih Tzu should be dead. She thought that might be the reason.
But, why did she lie about her own age? April would alter her age by 1 – 10 years.
She even lied to her elliptical cardio-machine when it asked for the age of the exerciser.
Why? Did she want the gift of extra-time? Had she wasted too much of life?
She was not sure why she did this, really.
But, she was not alone.
Close friends, some celebrated, told her of their various infidelities, their SSRIs, their true weight, and about their vibrators; yet, they lied to her about their age — as if age was an embarrassment they needed to disguise.
Was it vanity? Fear of life expectancy? Fear of being discarded, obsolete?
How tragic, she thought, not to be proud of earning time on earth.
How tragic not to bellow an advancing number.
She was confused by her lying. She was mostly truthful.
So, when her vet called to say that Maya, her Shih Tzu, needed eye-surgery, April panicked.
In dog years, a week was a month. Her heart pounded.
“Dr. McGreevy. Dr. McGreevy. Maya’s really thirteen. I lied when I said eleven.
Is the operation still safe?”
“Oh, yes,” he said, “just a small lid cancer. She’s not a pup, but she’s strong, so let’s stop it before it spreads. Maya will be fine. Why did you lie, April?
Why did you say Maya was eleven when she is thirteen?”
“Frankly, Doc.,” she said, “I don’t know, exactly.”
And, then her tone changed.
“Just keep her alive, Dr. McGreevy. My Maya means the world to me.”