makeupI had to go grocery shopping and this time I was going to look fabulous.  This meant I would have to do something I haven’t done in years: wear clothes that did not consist of sweatshirts or sweatpants and I would wear make up.

My plan about the makeup may seem kind of ridiculous to some of you and it’s really not.  I wore it all the time before I was diagnosed with bi-polar disorder and when I still didn’t have any obvious symptoms. I was doing a job I loved, I had friends and my family was intact and thriving.  My weight was manageable.  It was a time of confidence and contentment.  I didn’t wear very much and certainly didn’t need very much either.

Makeup was a simple thing for me back then.  I sorta felt pretty when I wore it.  One day, 10 years ago,  I just stopped.  I really didn’t need to enhance my looks, I said to myself.  I read about it all the time that woman put too much emphasis on how they look.  Really though, I just didn’t care how I looked anymore .

Today, I wanted to go to the store and look like a million bucks.   That’s it.  I didn’t want to pick up men or get attention.  I wanted to see how it felt to look better. I wanted to use this exercise as a way to love myself again.

It’s never easy though, is it?

First I raided my daughter’s makeup bag.  I think she hides the good stuff because all I found was crap.  Some of it was MY old crap.  I found a mascara that sorta had some life to it.  As I went to put it on I realized my eyelids now droop so much I no longer have a crease.  This would eliminate the need for eyeshadow then.

I found a brand new eyeliner and happily outlined my droopy lids until my eyes looked smokey and sexy.  I thought so anyway.

I looked for blush.  The girl never heard of it.


No foundation either.


Now the lips.  I’ve agonized about this because I tried some of my old lipsticks and they were horrible.  My skin tone is different I guess.  Digging in the kid’s makeup bag I found a lipstick and promptly tried it on then immediately wiped it off.  Yuck.  I saw a lip gloss in there.   I haven’t worn lip gloss since high school.  Lip-StainI tried it anyway and wow.  It was magnificent and not a gloss at all but a “stain”.

My daughter was rather confused when I asked her what a good mascara was to buy.  Of course she thought I wanted to buy HER some mascara.  For the rest of the day she would look at me and shake her head and wonder aloud why all of a sudden her mom wanted to wear make up.  She was very helpful though in picking out what I should use and said I could have her lip stain.

To finish getting ready for the store, I dressed in my very good new jeans and a fancy shirt. I’m not sure anyone would notice these because it was -32C with the windchill and I was bundled up in my ugly parka and salt-stained boots.

So I did the shopping and didn’t notice if anyone noticed me except for the 2 guys who helped me along the way.  The first one rescued my toilet paper that took a header out of my cart and was quite pleasant to me as he tucked it back in there.  I smiled at him with my stained mouth in gratitude.  The other guy prevented me from having a terrible accident when I was trying to climb the shelves to get to an item at the top.  It was my daughter’s favourite drink and this man saw what I was trying to do and simply plucked the can from the shelf and handed it to me.  Since he was very tall, I batted my elongated eyelashes at him (even though he was about 30; just a baby).  He scolded me good-naturedly and then his wife came, took his hand and led him silently away.

She may have been jealous of my eyes and she was wearing sweats.

The cashier was concerned that I would hurt myself pushing the cart to my borrowed car in the lot.  She asked me 4 times if I was sure I didn’t need help out.


I seem to have lost focus.

I don’t know if I felt pretty or better.  I did feel comfort with the ritual of putting makeup on and smokeyfussing to make it look right.  I was amazed the few times I caught my reflection and saw how my eyes looked.

It was good to give myself some positive attention for a change.

At the end of the day, my baby granddaughter didn’t notice anything.  Not even that my smokey eyes were now more racoon-like.  All she cared about was chewing on my finger.  Poor teething baby.

I have to remember I should not be rubbing my eyes or raking my hands down my face.

I’m going to wear makeup tomorrow when I go see Dr. G.  Hopefully he won’t decide I need more meds.


5 responses to “Reflection

  1. I stopped wearing makeup (and a bra) when I became a stay-at-home mom. I get it. Once in a while I’ll put a little makeup on. My son always seems a little shocked, “What happened to your face, Mom? I like it!”. It feels good to get fancy every now and again, even for a toddler audience of one 🙂

    • Thanks Tori! Me too re: the bra thing. I rip it off of me as soon as I get home from work. My daughter has been openly laughing at my face and comparing it to when “a grade sixer starts to wear make up”. Brat

  2. Corinne (Sherri's sister)

    Marie, you never cease to amaze me with your wonderful stories. You have made me laugh today and that is something not everyone can do. I remember you when you hung around with Sherri and you were and probably are “still beautiful.” I can so relate to your story as I never go anywhere without my makeup and definitely not without my lipstick. My family teases me about my lipstick, that if I knew I was going to be stranded on an island what is the one thing I would take with me and it would be my lipstick. You go beautiful lady…….

    • OH Corinne. It always such a pleasure to hear from you. I value your opinion very much. Thank you for the “lipstick” story! My mom was not usually without hers.

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