Thursday, May 13, 2010

Fix Your Face

I was kneeling on the kids’ bedroom floor, shelving picture books when Seconda ambled in and said : “Mommy can you make your face beautiful?”

To which I replied, “Is my face not beautiful now?

“No, it’s not,” she informed me, in a matter-of-fact way, “Can you make it beautiful?”

The smart-ass teenager within me wanted to answer, “I don’t know, CAN I?’ but I suppressed her.

“Do you mean that you want me to put makeup on?” I asked.

“Yes,” she said.

All this time, every time I sit down to put on makeup or blow dry my hair (which doesn’t happen that often, lets face it) I’ve worried that I would be giving Sec a complex, making her think that we women needed to perform these grooming rites in order to feel beautiful. I have taken PAINS to demonstrate to her that though I enjoy fashion and makeup and grooming, it’s not necessary, that its something fun I do, but that we’re great just the way we are.

As it turns out, I should have worried that she’d give me a complex.

I kind of felt like Sec was one of those overbearing husbands who tell their wives, “You look nice when you put some effort in.” My husband could not be farther from that kind of man. He will tell me I look pretty when I’m wearing a pilly long underwear shirt from the 80s, sweatpants that are 5 inches too long and my dirty, crooked glasses, with a scrunchie in my hair. This is one of the things I treasure about him. It’s hard enough to muster self confidence without your life partner kicking you when you’re down.

So I have no idea where my daughter gets this stuff from. I blame Disney of course, and my mother, as any self-respecting modern woman would, and then I don't know who to blame.

But I will tell you this much: don’t be surprised if you see me around town with mascara-ed eyes and a bit of rouge on the cheekbone. Don’t wonder why I’m wearing earrings and my hair looks brushed. My kid gave me a complex.