Shower Struggles

I was taking a shower tonight after midnight, as I am wont to do, when I was struck with the fear of being crushed by our glass shower door. This is not the first time either. Something is off on the track, or it needs to be oiled (greased? I don’t know, I’m not a shower door technician) and so when I try to close it, it doesn’t glide seamlessly along its track. I basically drag it into place at this point. And then stand there for a full two minutes to make sure it’s not going to come crashing down on me.

Shut up, I know you’re judging me about letting the water run considering California is in a catastrophic drought and all, but you can’t tell me what to do. I have to protect myself from the shower door. Which, incidentally, even if it DID fall off its tracks and down toward me in the shower, I would not be crushed to death. Physics doesn’t work like that, and even I know this logically. Allow me to illustrate…

shower drawing humor

I know, you’re wondering why I haven’t pursued a career as an artist. Or a physicist. This actually took me about 20 minutes to make – I thought it would be easier and then I was just in too deep to stop.

Anyway, I know I won’t REALLY be crushed by the shower door, so after I verify this fact for a few minutes, I move on with my shower.

But it doesn’t stop there. When you are at home alone (which I am tonight), it’s a scientific fact that you are more likely to be attacked by an intruder in the shower if you have shampoo in your eyes. If you get shampoo in your eyes, and you’re alone in your house showering after midnight, just accept the fact that you are the opening scene in a horror movie.

Every noise in the building has me reaching for my Venus razor, because if someone is coming after me, I’m going to seriously inconvenience them with my lady razor before they can bludgeon me to death. It’s super sharp guys, I haven’t used it for much lately.

At this point, I need to rinse my hair so that I’m no longer in danger of intruders, but this opens up a whole new problem. Have you seen Arachnophobia? Did you watch it when you were 7? Cool, me too – we should probably start a support group together.

There is a scene in the movie where the serial killer spider climbs onto the shower head, and as the girl in the movie is rinsing her hair with her eyes closed, it falls off with the water ONTO HER FACE. She doesn’t die I don’t think, but that scene scarred me for life. I would only take baths for like 2 years after that.

So once I survive the spider water, I really have to shave my legs. The bottom half at least – I have to wear a dress tomorrow, but it comes down just past my knee. OK, real talk. Balancing on one leg with the other perched up to shave can be precarious. And if you’ve ever even slightly lost your balance or slipped in the shower, you’ve experienced that feeling of utter panic that you’re going to fall in the shower, crack your head open, and they’re going to find you naked in the shower with hairy legs.

If you happen to be a fat girl, this fear is amplified even further. Honestly, that would be my nightmare to be found naked in my tub in what I can only assume would be the least flattering position ever.

I’ve had a couple ankle surgeries and have had to use a shower bench, but there was one time when I was at my parents’ house and I didn’t have it. I convinced them to bring up a plastic outdoor chair so I could sit on it in their shower and attempt to shave my 4 week post surgery wildebeest legs. Pro tip – don’t do this. I leaned forward too far and the flimsy plastic chair slipped out from under me (shocker, right??) and the only thing that gave me the strength to catch myself and not completely re-break my ankle was the utter mortification at the idea of being found naked by my parents.

Back to this evening though, I finally finished my shower and felt like Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade (I’m just full of late 80’s movie references today), making it through almost insurmountable obstacles to get to the holy grail. Which is obviously clean hair and smooth legs, ultimately putting me one step ahead of things tomorrow morning, which means an extra 30 minutes of sleep.

And honestly, that’s the main reason I take showers at night – because I’m too lazy to take them in the morning and society (and Gil) have continuously reminded me that not showering for days on end is not a viable option.

And so I share this with you to show you that for someone who really can’t turn their brain off at night, this is the kind of shit that runs through my head EVERY TIME I take a shower. But I keep doing it. For you. And for Gil. Because that’s love.

An Ode To My Procreating Friends

I currently have two best friends who are pregnant. I also have a handful of friends who have had babies in the last couple years. And if I understand correctly, this whole creating a human being from scratch business isn’t a walk in the park on the female body.

There are things that… happen. In fact, I remember being at a baby shower when I was 23, surrounded by my co-worker and all her friends (most of whom were already mothers), choking on my Chardonnay as they told her she should prepare to poop in front of her husband during birth and that her tits were going to resemble deflated balloons by the time her kids were through with her. That is one party I definitely left early.

Side-note: that party was the most effective birth control on the planet. THAT’S what we should be doing for high school kids. Forget these bullshit abstinence programs or just teaching them the practical need for contraceptives. Make these kids sit through a few baby showers. They’ll think twice before getting it on in the bathroom at prom if they know they’ll never be able to sneeze again without peeing their pants.

That actually brings me to my point. I have decided to share a story today as an ode to my pregnant friends and friends with babies. Since I’ll never experience the things you’re going through (not a sad moment, it’s totally by choice), I won’t be able to empathize completely, and I probably won’t be the first person you go to when you want to talk about how your body is betraying you.

But, I have been there on some level. My body has betrayed me too. And today, my procreating friends, I’m going to tell you about it. To level the playing field in a sense, so that if you want to talk to me about something your body is going through, you’ll know I’ve experienced at least a sliver of what you have, and I didn’t even have pregnancy or a baby as an excuse.

It all started when my heels tried to kill me. That’s a story for another day, but the important part of the story is that I shattered my ankle, and required major surgery and more metal than I like to think about to put it all back together. At the time, I was living in my condo alone (this was pre-lumberjack) and so for the first few weeks following surgery I couldn’t stay there. I was on so many pain-killers, and wasn’t even supposed to be up on crutches for the first week.

So, I moved in with my parents (who are completely awesome) and slept in the reclining sofa downstairs. I work in sales, so although I took sick days for that first week, it was the end of the quarter and I had a bunch of contracts I needed to bring in to make my commission. So I worked from home, and got on the phone to try to guilt my customers into getting their contracts all completed on time.

I basically lived in the recliner in my parents’ family room for a couple weeks. I could set up my computer on the couch and talk to customers, and the one downstairs bathroom was literally right behind me. OK. So here’s the thing… when you’re on a couch all day, and you sleep in that reclining couch, you get REALLY tired of it. And it starts to get uncomfortable… you just want to stretch out. So one day while I was working at home alone, I decided to slide off the couch and lay on the carpet to so I could work from there. Much better – mission accomplished. I stretched out like a giant starfish and was generally pretty pleased with myself.

Until about an hour later, when I encountered a slight problem. I had to pee. It was then that I realized the fatal flaw in my plan. I slid off the couch with my freshly butchered ankle elevated no problem, but getting UP without putting any kind of pressure on it wasn’t a trick I had practiced yet.

But no one told my bladder that. NO ONE.  I was clutching the arm of the couch on my knees, trying to remember the physics formula from high school that would give me the answer to this…. what leverage point was going to let me do this without putting myself back in the hospital. Nothing… I couldn’t think of anything. I probably should have been paying more attention in class. But in this moment in time, there was nothing I could do about that. All I could do was desperately start to crawl toward the bathroom and hope I’d figure something out.

I realized in horror I was fighting a losing battle. The sheer panic and humiliation of the situation granted me some superhuman strength, and somehow I was able to use one last burst of energy to pull myself up. And as I did… I peed. I peed my pants. In my parents’ house. Pants I wasn’t sure I’d be able to get off by myself because of the huge cast on my ankle. Pants I couldn’t put in the laundry because I couldn’t get into the garage on crutches. Pants that sat on the bathroom floor in a ball of shame, mocking me. I totally and completely peed my pants.

So, my pregnant and mommy friends… if you ever want to share any mortifying stories or talk about the things your body is going through, just remember that time I peed myself while trying to crawl to the bathroom in my parents’ house, and know that I will never judge you.

I Look Like A Clown Hooker

“Hold on, your eyebrow smeared and it’s on your cheek.”

Um, WHAT??? I never thought I would hear someone utter those words to me, but it happened and now I need to talk about it. Allow me to elaborate.

You see, I decided a few weeks ago I needed to branch out and really try some new things so I could turn one of my hobbies into something I could actually do some freelance work with. My own business – nothing fancy, just something on the side that I was in control of, and that could be a creative outlet for me. The idea of a tax break wasn’t unappealing either.

So I started doing my research and found a program to learn how to be a makeup artist. PERFECT. I love makeup. I’ve always done it for my friends and this would be a fun excuse to actually learn what the hell I was doing. And in my mind, this would be a perfect freelance gig I could try out with no pressure since I’m not quitting my day job.

I found a one-day workshop that got great reviews online, and they offered a “basic certification” after completion, as well as the ability to apply for a pro card – meaning I get discounts on makeup. SCORE. Sign me up.

Sunday was the day. A friend I’d met at work a few years ago got wind of this little adventure and decided to join me. Bright and early, we made our way to the class. Dress code: all black. Excitement level: high.

It started out fine, if a little unorganized. They held the workshop in a hair salon on the days it was closed, and 20 or so wannabe makeup artists, including myself, piled inside. Most of the girls were professional cosmetologists looking to expand their skill set to include makeup, but a handful of us were just doing it “for fun”.

As I watched the owner and professional makeup artist go through her demo, I started to develop some concerns. Because about halfway through the demo, she got to eyebrows. I agreed with her statement about how important eyebrows are, and how they frame the face. She even made a comment about wanting to avoid “chola eyebrows” that look like they were just drawn onto the face. Forgetting for a second that she may have offended a number of people in class, I happen to personally prefer a more natural looking brow as well (I over-plucked in high school and I’m still recovering).

She goes on to explain that they have REVOLUTIONIZED a new technique, and it’s one we are all going to master in this class. Apparently, eyebrows that angle down at the ends at all (so, basically almost everyone) make people look “sad” and is apparently an epidemic we need to address. So as we broke off into pairs to practice different techniques, I kid you not, these were the instructions:

Ignore the natural brow where it angles down. It’s only distracting you from where the true brow should be. Pretend your client has no eyebrows and you are going to create the perfect eyebrow. Longer, and higher than where the hair is.

Hmmm. Weird. I bet you’re thinking what I’m thinking… wouldn’t you have 2 eyebrows on each side then? Basically an eyebrow that forks in the road and goes both ways? YES. YOU DO. YOU HAVE TWO FUCKING EYEBROWS ON EACH SIDE. And guess what??? That look we were trying to avoid? The one where it looks like a 5 year old drew on your eyebrow with a sharpie? THAT’S EXACTLY WHAT HAPPENS. When you decide to create a whole new eyebrow where there is no hair, what do you expect?

I was working with an adorable little blond massage therapist with perfect skin – one of the other people in the class just taking it for fun. As the instructor comes over to paint on her dark brows, she looks at me in horror. I point out that the color is too dark and that you can still clearly see her actual eyebrow hair under the heavy line, and the instructor promptly informs me we can “hide” that, and a lot of people just shave off the ends of their brows so you can do this shape properly. Oh, of course. YOU SHAVE IT OFF. I see. Now the massage therapist looks really nervous.

“Can we trim your eyebrow, just a little?” the instructor asks her. She agrees. I decide she’s insane. I wouldn’t let that woman near me with scissors. She “trims” them all right… basically down the skin. After she walks away, my partner looks at me in dismay, groaning about how the instructor just “stole” her whole eyebrow, and how ridiculous she looks. The instructor circles back, one of her minions in tow to show off her beautiful work. I can’t help myself at this point. “She hates it. She wouldn’t go in public like that. That may work for an editorial shoot with models, but it’s not an everyday look. No normal person wants to wear a look like that for everyday life.” The death stare of an angry makeup artist (who does in fact, shave her eyebrows so she can “create any shape she wants”) sears into my very soul. “Well, I WOULD wear that look every day,” she snaps at me, and stomps away on her 5 inch heels. Huh, guess I won’t be winning any teacher’s pet points.

Now, I don’t know if it was punishment for mouthing off, but when the other instructor came back to “help” do my eyebrows, it was a sight to behold. Same double rainbow effect, but this time, THEY ADDED GLUE. “Oh, we just layer on glue and then paint over it with concealer to hide the hairs,” she tells me. I’m laughing so hard inside at this point, I figure why not? It was basically the same glue that was in our 3rd grade glue sticks, all over my face. As she finishes her masterpiece, her hand grazes my “new” eyebrow and it winds up on my cheek.

OK, timeout. If my eyebrow can smear onto my fucking cheek, that is not a good look. I grabbed the handheld mirror at my station to take a peek. Bad idea. I looked like a clown hooker after a rough night. Not OK. And as she finishes wiping my eyebrow OFF MY CHEEK, my workshop partner is standing behind her, eyes wide, mouthing, “I’m sorry, I’m sorry” over and over. I think she might need therapy now.

As they finished taking our individual “after” pictures and started getting ready for a group shot, my friend who had tagged along and I looked at each other and just decided to get the hell out of there. It look me a minute to register what she was thinking though… at that point, everyone in class looked permanently surprised. We made our way to the door, but not before I got cornered by one of the instructors. “Don’t you just love how you look?” she asks me. I know I should have lied and been polite – it would be easier. But I just couldn’t. “Well, no. I mean, the work my partner did is great and I like the eye shadow, but I would never draw on eyebrows like this. I just wouldn’t wear them like this in public.” Awkward silence. I turned and walked away and we made our way out of the salon and back to my car.

I looked in my rear-view mirror as soon as we got in the car and just lost it. I needed to get that shit off my face, ASAP. As I reached for my bag I realized I left my makeup remover wipes in class. SHIT. I can’t go home like this and I’m sure as hell not walking back into that salon. I found an old paper towel, probably from that day last week I ate a bagel in the car on the way to work, and wiped off as much as I could.

If you don’t believe me, I have photographic evidence:

eyebrow

Now, who wants me to do their eyebrows??