I walked in today for my sporadic manicure/pedicure visit. Last night, I thought, "If I hear the scratch of tattered feet against sheet one more time... I'm going to kick Yosh." So, at the expense of domestic abuse, I carved out time today to handle this slightly imposing business of smoothing out my feet.
I remember the first time I walked into one of these luxurious little pads. Now, take in mind, I'm a late bloomer. In most aspects of my life. So I was a mature 22, almost 23 year old the first time I stepped foot in one of these bad boys. And I had always been self-conscious about my feet. I mean, my size 10 paws could have easily passed as grown mens instead of a feminine lady- no callous ever removed, no cuticle ever pushed down, the toe nails rarely got even a homemade painting. Entering the salon was an act in and of itself of putting on my big girl panties.
"Yes, I just want a pedicure. My feet are pretty bad...."
My quiet, embarrassed confession was met by a Vietnamese lady that took absolutely none of that shame into account as she responded with a harsh,
"It's because you no take care of them."
Well, ice was broken and we were on our way to becoming best friends.
I started taking better care of my feet for fear of getting beat down by an over-sensitive pedicurist.
And the truth of nail salons was out- no shame in the game. They will call your crap and do their best to turn you into an addict to their care.
So today I walked into one of the nail places that I rotate between, this time greeted not by an insult, but a genuine, "How are you? You no come for a long time."
Now, bless this Vietnamese's heart, whose name I don't even know, because, let's be honest, I'm only picking up 30% of what these people be spittin out, and her name never made the 30% in all the visits I've had with her. And to be fair, it's pretty clear that they equally don't understand me because I swear I have to tell them a good 4 to 6 times in a row, "No thank you" "No thank you" "No thank you" to get the message across that I'm not interested in the extra foot massage or callous remover that they're offering. We're all just doing the best we can with what we have to get along.
But the whole point is this...the sweet lady who greeted me was saying a lot more than "You no come in for a long time". And I picked up on that. I'm quick like that. Because as much as I would like to forget, I vividly remember the last time I came in. And it had nothing to do with a pedicure.
Now, remind yourself once again that I'm a late bloomer. So I'd been trying to psyche myself up for getting a waxing down south for a long time. But I'm a chicken, ya'll! I mean besides it being invasive, someone told me to take 3 Ibuprofen before I went in. I still wasn't jumping on the bandwagon that beauty requires pain. And besides, I was rather content letting my Venus razor get the job done. So I kept putting it off. Until it was just plain time. And for how fearful I was, can we please discuss why I thought it would be a good place to go to a nail salon to have this "procedure" done? Or maybe everyone goes to nail salons? I don't know. Is that what you do? Virgins make crazy mistakes and I'm pretty sure this was one of them.
And as chance would have it, my pedicure lady would be the same one stripping me. She escorted me into a room and told me to take my pants off.
Weird that just dropping the drawers in a corner office is normal and expected. But of course, I obeyed. She slid into her plastic surgeon-looking gloves and started confidently groping around. Now we all know to win a soul over, you've got to kill them with kindness, suffocate them with compliments. But I'll tell you what, I don't know how I feel about some random Vietnamese lady telling me my Stuff is gorgeous. And what in the world does 'gorgeous' mean in this context anyway?!! Either way, I wished she would've taken the road less traveled to win me over, leaving the kindness and compliments for another day. Or better yet, another occasion. Like, tell me I have nice legs. Or pretty eyes.
In this inspection of sorts, she went ahead and deemed it necessary to upgrade me from a bikini wax....to a Brazilian.
Way to take advantage of the newbie. I mean....for. real. Where is the love?
And so the process started. Of me laying on the doctor room-esq table, her telling me to have one leg down, one propped up against the wall, spread open, while she ripped away, 2 small square inches at a time. I just kept thinking, This can not be normal. Right? Because there's no way you were one-leg up, in a dark office, with an enthused groper. Can we talk about uncomfortable? And you go ahead and pick what kind of uncomfortable- emotionally. Physically. Spiritually.
This was like 60 minute bootcamp- an exercise meant to take you down to ground zero.
To beckon surrender. Remind you that you are nothing.
I walked out of that place completely broken.
A naked, lost, wandering, hurt soul.
And so when I saw her today, for the first time after D day, I took her riddle-laced greeting and threw it back in her face,
"Yea it's been a long time. You better keep both your hands and your eyes off my gorgeous stuff. This place still gives me the heebie jeebies so you're lucky I even came in. I'm still suffering from PTS and it has everything to do with YOU."
Actually, that was just the response I gave in my head.
Regrettably, my real response was a simple smile and,
"I know. I need a manicure/pedicure please. And that'll be all."