Friday, January 26, 2007

The Beard

Oh, how I wish this post wasn't about my face.

From my Irish father I got intelligence, stubbornness, and unfailing loyalty. And skin so white that the glare from my naked body blinds infants and small animals.

From my Portuguese mother I got a maternal, affectionate, and loving nature. And hair so dark and thick I can hide Satan's lesser demons in its shadow.

Unfortunately, that hair doesn't only grow on my head.

I got my first "witch's hair" (a term I learned from CB for those little bristling hairs on a woman's chin) when I was in high school. During a makeover for a modeling class, some bitchy woman with frosted hair plucked it out.

And so was born a life long obsession.

Not only do I spend untold hours every week with wax, Nair, tweezers, and cream trying to ensure that I don't become eligible to star as the bearded lady in a circus show, I have developed the bad habit of pulling hairs from my face (including eye lashes and eye brows) whenever I have a spare hand.

For years I deliberated about getting electrolysis. I was sick of all the work, time, and pain involved in removing hair, and I was sick of being self conscience about it. I am forever tucking my chin into my shirt or covering my mouth with my hand when I talk to people.

But all I heard was that electrolysis was painful and not very effective.

Then I got my first gray hair on my chin.

That's when I started fantasizing about laser hair removal. I've been talking about it for years, but I never felt justified spending money on something so vain.

And then along came my husband with a gift certificate in hand.

He was extremely nervous about giving it to me. He didn't want me to think that my extraneous hair bothered him in any way. And he was worried about how it would sound to my friends.

"What did your husband get you for Christmas?"

"Laser hair removal."

It just doesn't sound so good.

But it was the perfect gift. It was something I really wanted but would never get for myself. He told me that he was really giving me back time and confidence.

He got me six sessions with the doctor. (Yes, it is by an M.D. in the same hospital where I had my jaw surgery.) And those six sessions come with a two year hair-free guarantee.

I am very excited. But very nervous too. I don't want to get my hopes up and then not have it work so well. And I'm afraid of the pain during the procedure and the "sunburn-like" pain after. But there was no way I was going to waste that much money, so I made my appointment.

February 8. It's circled in red on my calendar.

Last week I got the pre-appointment paperwork. Because they want as many hairs to be in the growth stage as possible, I am not allowed to "wax, pluck or use depliatories" until after my appointment.

Do you know what I will look like after two weeks of letting my beard grow?

I am, however, allowed to shave.

Yes, I can shave my face with a razor.

I haven't decided what to do yet. Do I really want stubble and five o'clock shadow? Will my husband ever have sex with me again if he has to teach me how to shave my face? Do they sell enough Jolene cream bleach in the entire free world? Or should I just let it grow and hide in my house for two weeks?

You know, I've always wanted to be one of the guys, by I didn't want it to happen this way!

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