Drawn by the lure of a mail advertisement, I found myself standing in a new salon/beauty store in our town for its grand opening. A decked-out employee greeted me at the door, and I strolled up and down the aisles, lulled by gleam of fluorescent lights on the white tile.
A niggling sensation crept up as I glanced over the shelves: I don't belong here. Too many options, too many unknown products, too fancy.
Even though I enjoy fashion and wear makeup, something about a salon-setting makes me feel like I'm a child in an adult world. Blending eye shadow? Choosing a skin care line? Do I even know how to properly wash my face? Suddenly I'm all thumbs, certain that I'm inept at the most basic grooming habits.
I almost left the store, but something -- who knows what? -- made me stay a moment longer, just long enough for a stylist to ask if I was finding everything alright. My response surprised me. Before I could reconsider, I sat down at the makeup counter and let her work some smoky-eye-shadow magic on me.
I don't do these types of things. I don't pause in the middle of a normal Saturday to get a free makeover.
And I really don't do what I did next: I paid for a mini-facial.
This is absurd, I thought, as I settled into the reclining chair and the esthetician began to gently wash my face with a cleanser that smelled like lemongrass and sage. Absurd, and somehow deliciously wonderful.
I forced myself to focus, to enjoy the moment, to revel in the whim -- not rationalizing the $20 it would cost, worrying that I'd arrive home a half hour later than I originally anticipated, or mulling over how I'd revert to my regular Dove soap routine the next day. I simply let myself be pampered.
Later in the evening, I was wearing an old tee shirt and athletic shorts, sporting a ponytail, and finishing a messy project in our garage while Joel pruned bushes in the back yard and the girls played with their neighborhood friends.
I stopped working when my neighbors walked across the street to pick up their kids. One took a good look at me. "I just can't get over your eye shadow!"
I couldn't quite get over it, either. I love that I had taken the plunge and done something against the grain, something so unexpected.
Besides, I've never looked so fine while working in the garage, ever. Entirely worth it.