Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Kindergarten, Eyebrows and a Dog

My daughter started Kindergarten this year.  With both kids in school, I had visions of enormous amounts of free time.  I pictured myself starting my day with a Yoga class,  followed by a trip to the coffee shop, where I would cozy up on one of the velvet couches sipping lattes and working on my latest screenplay (yes, I am writing screenplays in my vision).  Afterward I would hop on my bike (in my vision I was biking everywhere) and I would bike to the city for lunch with friends.  I might squeeze in some shopping and possibly an eyebrow wax.  Then it would be time to bike back home to pick up the kids, who would be exhausted from their long day at school and would want nothing more than to come home and relax.  We'd hang out together, maybe a trip to the playground before dad gets home and then we'd whip up an amazing dinner with all of the fresh organic/ local foods I was able to pick up at the market that day.

On day one of Kindergarten, I acted upon one part of my vision and made an appointment for an eyebrow wax.  The salon was beautiful and tranquil, and as I lay on the heated massage table I smiled as I thought of my changing, stress-free future (complete with perfect eyebrows).  I was in such a calm state that I barely noticed the tape and wax being pulled off of my skin.  The scent of the aromatic healing oil surrounded me and felt wonderful as it was applied to my face.  The stylist handed me a mirror and I held it above my head, ready to admire my new perfectly groomed brows.  However these happy thoughts were immediately replaced with two words:  'HOLY'  and   'SHIT'.   My eyebrows had been scalped.  They were now two tiny lines that looked like they had been lightly etched in with an eyebrow pencil that needed to be sharpened.  "What do you think"?  The perky stylist enthusiastically asked.  After regaining some composure, and recovering from my initial shock, I was able to whisper, "Ummmmm, they are a little thin"?

She immediately went into defensive mode, "well--you had some areas that needed to grow in, and they would not have been uniform-- it's what I had to work with-- they will grow back even now--it, um, really looks great though.  Thin eyebrows are all the rage".  Now, I knew this was a lie, since I had just read a copy of 'Allure' magazine while waiting in the front lobby and I knew that it is ALL about bushy eyebrows this year.  I managed to be polite, and quickly paid the front desk (with tip- I know) and ran from the salon with my hand covering my eyebrows.  Thank god I was driving, and not biking, as I could not get out of there fast enough.

On the way home, I checked my eyebrows over and over again in the rearview mirror,  hoping to see some new growth- but each time getting more panicked at how absolutely ridiculous they looked.  On about the 25th or 26th time looking in the mirror,  I realized not only are they way too thin but one is higher than the other.  I looked like a lunatic.  I sat at a stoplight trying to raise one eyebrow and lower the other and wondering if I could naturally hold that pose all day.  A car honking behind me snapped me out of it and I managed to make it the rest of the way home without pulling the mirror down to take another look.  Once I got home, I spent an hour experimenting with various eye pencils, powders, and shadows, trying to get a natural look and decided that I definitely needed more products.  I went to Walgreens and had a wonderful conversation with the elderly woman in cosmetics about how to "draw in your brows".  I bought  a couple of pencils and left feeling somewhat encouraged.  I went home and tried the pencils out, trying to even out the crazy brow with the slightly less crazy brow- and I was pretty proud of myself because I thought it actually looked presentable.  I was now able to face the public and decided I could take a trip to the grocery store.

At the store I ran into a couple of people I knew.  In both conversations, I noticed they kept looking up at my brows and were definitely giving me a "holy shit what the hell is up with her eyebrows" vibe.  I grabbed a frozen pizza and got out of there.  Once I was back home, I went online and looked up "eyebrows".  I read that Rosemary Oil helps eyebrows grow fast.   I also discovered that powder may be more youthful looking than liner, and that Bobbie Brown makes a wonderful powder that several celebrities use.  I also discovered that there is a renowned eyebrow stylist in the Chicago area that has worked wonders with even the worst eyebrow mishaps, and through tinting, shaping, waxing and threading, she will give you back your dignity in no time.  I called the salon and made the next available appointment (November) with the eyebrow miracle-lady.  I drove to the Health Food Store and picked up a small bottle of Rosemary Oil, and made a stop at the mall, where I bought some Bobbie Brown powder and eyebrow brush.

I got back in the car, ready to head home to tackle the rest of my day, glanced at the clock and realized I had 10 minutes to get to school to pick up my daughter.  I got there on time, and she bounded into the car, full of things to tell me about her day.  She LOVED kindergarten.  She LOVED her teacher.  She LOVED her friends.  She LOVED her classroom.  She told me she was so happy and that Kindergarten is THE BEST.  I was thrilled that she was thrilled.  She asked about my day and I struggled with what to say since it sounded so ridiculous that it was all about eyebrows.  I said, "oh, I did a little grocery shopping",  remembering the frozen pizza.

"Mom"?  My daughter asked.  "Yes"?  I said.   "When are we going to get a dog"?  This question was a daily if not hourly one at our house.  We knew it would happen eventually, and had been considering it, but weren't sure if this was a good time.  I was just starting to enjoy the kids new independence.   The potty training, walking, cleaning, and feeding thing just didn't mesh with my new vision of personal development.  I looked back at her in the rearview mirror, her eyes big with hope and expectation, and I caught sight of my eyebrows.  I thought maybe it wouldn't be such a bad thing to not have so much free time.  "We'll work on getting a dog soon",  I told her.  She smiled.

"Mom"?  she asked.

"Yes, honey"?

"Why did you color on your eyebrows"?

The dog arrived in mid-September.   My eyebrows haven't quite arrived, but getting there.