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Letting Yourself Go

"Much of your pain is the bitter potion by which the physician within you heals your sick self." ~Khalil Gibran~
“Much of your pain is the bitter potion by which the physician within you heals your sick self.”
~Khalil Gibran~

Sometimes just letting things go is therapeutic. Some call that kind of letting go ‘surrender’.

That’s not the kind of ‘letting go’ I’m talking about though.

No darlings. I’m talking about letting yourself go, as in go to hell. Not in a ‘handbasket’, for doing something devilishly delightful and hedonistic, but letting your beauty go the way of polyester leisure suits and leg warmers.

Two days ago,  at what I hope to be the beginning of the end of a bout of some weird viral infection/allergic reaction combo, I worked up enough nerve to give myself a little kick in my ample ass.

Since I’ve become way more selective about the company I keep…in the nude, I’ve kinda let my body go the way of the dull housewife.

My previous philosophy of keep it in shape in case the opportunity arises (and it did many, many times), eroded into; if you’re worth gentlemen, it I’ll wax it. Which, of course does not radiate the sexy aura of the wanton-duchess-of- sex that I’m going for.

Not being able to see my own bikini line over my boobs also makes it easy to let things go a bit. Don’t get me wrong, I still go to see my aesthetician, just not as frequently. This is the same one who offered to wax my nostrils (I’m not kidding).

In retrospect, I believe that’s what set off my denial of all things carnally delightful. Stretched out with only my sweater, undies and socks on the waxing bed, I had visions of how I looked with my pale thighs exposed under the harsh waxing light, and racing  thoughts of the much-younger date I was scheduled to entertain that evening, crawling on top of my  fleshy mound of deliciousness, looking up my nostril and losing his erection because I had some abnormal nostril hair happening.

I took her up on the nostril waxing (doesn’t hurt like you think it would, and she did if for free), and then stood the poor kid up, leaving him high and dry with no good lovin’s from yours truly. I stayed in and drowned my old, naked, hairless-nostirled self in wine.

The next day after I read his rather harsh email, I knew I deserved it. It’s just poor form to stand someone up because of your own insecurity.

That was the beginning of letting myself go.

It’s no reason to despair or send your recommendations of good self-esteem programs though sweeties. I did eventually end up  having a lovely date with the young gentleman.

At this age and stage, I’ve had the good fortune of good company from a good number of good men. Men of my vintage however are all married with children, or just beginning divorce proceedings, a nastiness that I will never expose myself to. In other words, I have a grand selection of much older, and much younger men.

That’s not a terrible predicament. It’s just that much older men all seem to need some assistance with their less enthusiastic erections, and the much younger men all hump like bi-polar jack-rabbits in a manic state (In all fairness, much older men know how to go about romance and much younger men are eager to please and entertaining).

Needless to say, it’s a rare shag that inspires the effort for properly scaped pubic hair and firm thighs.

But two days ago, I had a good hard conversation with myself. I knew it was going to be tough, so I sat myself down in a candlelit bubble bath with a little Marc Cohen playing, a platter of chocolate dipped strawberries and a glass a bottle of champagne.

Mid-winter depression and lack of joy in daily activities makes for the perfect storm of self-doubt and negative self-talk. It was time for me to have a firm but gentle, loving chat with my worn out self.

I have finally let myself go enough to upset myself, to want to repair the damage done, and to want to like crawling into bed with my own body at the end of the day.

That’s what matters after all, isn’t it ladies? How we feel about ourselves makes our days good ones or bad ones.

Any woman can find a man eager to have his deliciously perfect man- bits cuddled, but it’s a rare woman who loves herself enough to dig out of mid-winter depression in order to nurture her own self.

Go ahead, wax it, pluck it, trim it and firm it up ladies….if you build it, they will come.

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Mirror Mirror

Bush Trimming / Horticultural Bikini Wax by Banksy
Bush Trimming / Horticultural Bikini Wax by Banksy (Photo credit: dullhunk)

Spa visits are rife with interesting conversational tidbits. In my own mind that is.

Now, I have, as most ladies do, a regular aesthetician.

I’ve found a waxer and polisher that I like, and I have been faithful to her for the past five years.

We know what to expect from  one another. I drop my pants, and she efficiently goes about her business, with the soothing sounds of water and the pan flute flowing from the sound system.

Water and the pan flute don’t drown out the sound of screaming. That’s somewhat comforting, knowing the music isn’t a cover up for torture chambers, just an attempt to relax you as hot wax drips just  millimeters away from your little girl.

Today my groomer was away. Gone. Not to be found. I was at the mercy of another woman, and my anxiety hummed up an octave.

As I spread my grand, gorgeous self across the waxing table, I began to wonder at all of the unspoken thoughts I have, and that my aesthetician must certainly have.

First of all, I always wear ugly undies. It is not desirable that the woman waxing my personality-below-the-belt find my gitch interesting or attractive.

Mainly I’m concerned that they my panties are old enough I won’t care if wax gets on them, and that they are clean and odourless.

If we’re honest with ourselves darlings, the only two reasons that we go to the spa are that we’re too lazy to do the work ourselves (’cause let’s face it, with a little practice any woman can keep her pubes groomed and her nails painted), and, it’s an hour or two long escape from our men and children.

It’s sad that having our pubic hair pulled out is a break from how hard we’re expected to work at home.

So today, with my legs spread open, the only work I do is hold up one side of my Wal-Mart panties as my groomer applies warm wax to the edge of the pleasure pit, and then mercilessly pulls all the hair out. Yah. Nice.

Her method is slightly different, and she’s muttering a bit.  I’ve gone so long to the same Vietnamese owned spa that I’m convinced  if my labia were to speak, they’d be fluent in Vietnamese slang.  If I ever travel to that part of the world, I think I’ll just wear a dress and walk on my hands.

This goes on, until she assumes she’s balded me sufficiently in all the right places. I have a general sense that all is well in the valley of passion, and prepare to get up, and regain my dignity (aka put my pants back on).

Instead, she holds my shoulder down and offers a mirror. “Here. You check.”  Pardon?  Um… No.

That’s just a little to finicky and a bit kinky for my taste. Looking at my own lady bits in a mirror in this small space with another woman is like the B quality porn warm up to mutual masturbation.

Nah. No thanks. I’ll just take your word for it. I’m having someone come and check your work later on. With their tongue. I’ll let you know what they think.

Next time I’m not just walking in. I’ll be sure to book an appointment with my aesthetician – no mirror required.

We make our way over to the spa chairs, where there is a warm, bubbling spa waiting for my toesies.

There is no eye contact. We both pretend she hasn’t just seen my holiest-of-holies, and I relax as she buffs and polishes the less taboo bits.

There is no tip generous enough in my opinion for the women who do our dirty work.


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The Case of the Paper Mache Toenail and the Missing Eyebrow

“It is better to be beautiful than to be good, but it is better to be good than to be ugly.”
`Oscar Wilde~

We’ve all done it.  Those little at-home-do-it-yourself beauty blunders that leave you scrambling for a remedy.

Earlier this year, as the snow was just starting to melt, and the ice had subsided enough to start running, I did just that, I started running again. 

My feet had other things on their mind though. Like not running. Like not adapting to new shoes. So, I tried three pair before I found something that suited my stride. I ran for two weeks in the second pair determined that my feet would adjust, and my toes paid the price.

Toe bang. Ouch.  I had one toe on each foot that looked like I had taken a hammer to them. I’d heard of it before, but decided it wasn’t so bad. So I had some bruising, I’d survive. Little did I know that my toes wouldn’t make out so well. 

Soon it became evident that my  pretty summer pedicures were in jeopardy. Horror of beauty horrors!

I have almost made it out of sandal season without jeopardizing the beauty of my feet. Almost. After my last pedicure I realized that my aestetician had gotten a bit over zealous with my big toe nail,and it had almost come off. What?! Gross! I think I’m going to be sick.

 How on earth could I live with that? My love life would not survive!

This qualified as a beauty emergency.  The solution came to me in a flash. One layer of clear nail polish, a thin, single layer of toilet tissue, and another layer of clear nail polish. Voila! One paper mache toenail kept in tact long enough to let it grow out, and no gross intimate encounters.

Why yes, thank you. I am a beauty genius. This expertise has come at a price though ladies.

For a short time I lived with an aesthetics teacher. She taught me how to do mani’s, pedi’s and waxing of every kind. One night after a long shift (long, long ago and far, far away) I decided I would wax my own eyebrows. My landlady wasn’t available, and I needed a nice tidy browline for my lunch date the next day.

Never wax your own eyebrows when you’re tired. That fateful night I  managed to wax the outer half of my right eyebrow completely off. Super. Besides the obvious pain, was the pain of being vain.

I had just started seeing a man I was head-over-heels for, and after penciling in my half eye-brow (thank gawd I’m fair), I was terrified that he would stroke that side of my face after a tender kiss and wipe my fake half-eyebrow off.

Lesson learned; let someone else wax your eyebrows.

Over the years I’ve come to realize there are a few tips for at home gal-grooming that I would like to share with you, my very fabulous, deliciously feminine readers;

1) Always have a box of your favourite shade of hair dye in your cupboard. You never know what might happen when you get the urge to go hair wild. It will come in handy, trust me.

2) Cuticle scissors – they do in a pinch when you can’t get to the spa.

3)Pre-waxed strips.  Apply a light layer of baby powder, press the strip on in the direction of hair growth and pull the opposite way, parallel to your skin. No unsightly hair.

4)Clear nail polish. Creates secure paper mache toenails. Stops runs in panty hose, and when you don’t have time to let your polish dry, it’s less likely to look unsightly with a small smudge than any coloured polish.

5)A really beautifully scented body lotion. For your toes, your elbows, your heels and anywhere else that needs a quick softening up before your man gives you a squeeze.

6)Tweezers. ‘Nuff said.

7)Hairband – even the most unruly hair – no matter what length, can be disguised quickly and easily with a hairband.

8)Extra Mascara – I keep one in my purse and my desk drawer. When you’re having a bad make-up day, good mascara and a bit of lip gloss can disguise lots.

9)Gin. Yes, Gin. Wine will also do. Two glasses, and no matter if you’re without any of the first 8 items on the list, you feel like a million bucks; like Marilyn in her white skirt, like you could take on the world wearing nothing but a great pair of heels while holding your gin on the rocks.

10)An unlimited sense of humour and imagination.

It’s called being resourceful and light-hearted. Sexier than anything you could ever primp or spray or polish into place.