We were going to Hawaii. We were leaving at O Dark Thirty. We had never been, and we were very excited. To top it off, it was cold and snowing in our Midwestern city. HA HA HA HA HA!!!!
But, as usual, I had run myself into a tizzy getting all the Top Priority Must-Do Tasks done so that we could get out of town. You know, the Top Priority Must-Do Tasks that are suspiciously like sane people’s Bottom Priority Who-Cares-Hakuna-Matata-Que-Sera-Sera-Let-It-Go Tasks. Somehow, it’s in my DNA that I’ve got to do all this prep, or I won’t have fun on my trip. Meanwhile, I spend the whole trip recovering from the frazzle of getting out of town. It’s a cuckoo situation.
Anyway, I needed to do something about my unwanted facial hair. See, when Aunt Flo stopped coming around any more, I started getting Nuclear Power Jolts on weird places like the insides of my elbows. But the worst midlife crisis came when I noticed one day, looking in a mirror in the sunlight, that I was suddenly sporting a Fu Manchu moustache!
I now had an easier time growing facial hair than my Beloved. His one errant attempt at growing a lush, manly moustache ended badly. He grew a nice patch on the left side, and a nice patch on the right side. But there was a stubborn one-inch gap under his nose that refused to sprout even one wisp of hair. He looked like the Morse Code of hair – dahhh dit dahhh! So he quickly shaved again, and resigned himself to a bald upper lip for life.
But mine, ironically, was amply fuzzy, but unwanted. The fact that I am female made having a Fu Manchu moustache a bad thing. It made me say . . . fu-ey.
I couldn’t let my Beloved spend that kind of money on a second honeymoon in Hawaii, imagining Brooke Shields running toward him on the beach in her bikini . . . and instead he gets me, in a Fat Lady muumuu with a Fu Manchu!!!
So I went to get waxed. The stylist was of Asian descent. I tried not to let it bother me when she said, “I going to WHACK you.”
The room she led me to looked suspiciously like a morgue. At least it had a lot more comfortable bed. I didn’t realize that to get waxed on just my upper lip, I would have to lay down on the bed like a surgery patient. I took off my shoes and socks, and lay there, awaiting my fate, with cold feet – a signal to which I should have attended.
Here came the happy, peppy, positive Wax Mistress, ready to whack me, wielding her Whack Pot. Did you KNOW there’s such a thing as a Whack Pot?
She loaded up heavy, warm wax on both sides of my upper lip and down the sides. It felt like warm, heavy bricks. She waited a moment. It was ominous. Just as I was wondering if I could move my lips enough to say, “I CHANGED MY MI. . . .”
She yanked a long strip on the right up and away, with tiny hairs visible in the wax. A pelt from Beauty Shop Hell.
I saw my bare feet rise up off the foot of the bed, toes spread- ing out wider than I thought possible. Hmm. Wonder why my feet are doing that?
Then YOWSA! I felt the PAIN!!! My nerves must be shot, if my feet felt the pain in my upper lip before my upper lip did.
No sense trying to organize my lips into telling her I changed my mind NOW. If I did, I’d have to go to Hawaii with one side lustrously Fu Manchu, and the other as bald as a baby’s behind. So I braced myself, and sure enough:
There went the pelt on the other side. Holy schmoly! Ouchie oochie!
Then she plucked and pulled out about 50 more little dollops of wax-speckled, deep-rooted hairs, here and there and everywhere, all the while making pleasant small talk. So that’s what it feels like getting whacked. O . . . K. In shock, I paid the money and walked out into the cold, my now-hairless, totally numb lip icing up like a slick airplane wing.
Within a day, the numbness gave way to blisters and a few little sores. I think she accidentally whacked off a few sections of the skin of my lip, too.
Darn! It didn’t look THAT bad, before. Now it was eye-catching, like a strawberry milk moustache.
Our daughter Eden helpfully pointed out that the irritated and brand-new skin would be much more likely to sunburn. If you sunburn fresh, new skin, you get a permanent scar. So here I was, going to bright and sunny Hawaii, planning to be outside every day for 11 days!
“A SCAR ‘STASHE!” she chortled. “You’d better wear a thick layer of sunblock with the highest SPF on your upper lip the whole time!”
So now my Beloved is going to have his Brooke Shields running toward him in a Fat Lady muumuu with a Santa Claus moustache!!! No need to keep a stiff upper lip. I had no choice!
Oh, why didn’t I leave well enough alone? Why do I always try to improve on the looks God gave me? They should be good enough, since they’re from Him. Shouldn’t they? Sigh.
At least the Whack Mistress gave me SOMETHING to bolster my flagging self-esteem. As I was leaving the beauty shop, she said, “You whack well.”
Heyyyy! I whack well! That’s something! Look out, Hawaii! Here we come! †
Consider the lilies of the field, how they grow;
they toil not, neither do they spin:
and yet I say unto you, that even Solomon in all his glory
was not arrayed like one of these.
Wherefore, if God so clothe the grass of the field,
which to day is, and to morrow is cast into the oven
shall He not much more clothe you, O ye of little faith?
— Matthew 6:28b-30
By Susan Darst Williams www.DailySusan.com Radiant Beams Vol. I © 2016