"Have you decided what colour you'd like for your nails?" The esthetician points with her chin over to the selection of nail polishes on the counter as she massaged my calves.
I pick up the nail wheels, vacillating between the reds and the pinks. Seduce Him (although that should really be Seduce Him/Her - I know plenty of gals out there who love it when their partners wear bright red polish on their extremities. Blushing Bride - HAH! Royal Tease - Seriously??
Holding the wheel down near my feet to check out the colours in context to their eventual placement, I startle when she says, "What about your fingernails?"
"Oh, no, I don't do fingernails," I immediately say.
Because I don't. Not with my hands. I have big strong 'peasant' hands. Or so I've been told. I can't ever buy vintage gloves because my hands won't fit into them. The girth of my hand is a whopping 8.25 inches. If I place my hands up against David's, his hands are just slightly larger than mine. And he's got big hands.
"Nope. No thank you. I'd just feel like a lumberjack in drag."
"What? No!" The esthetician admonishes me. She grabs my hands. Splays them out for all the world to see. "You have strong hands. Nice long fingers. Your nails are in good shape. Don't let anyone tell you that you can't wear polish."
It was revelatory. 'Don't let anyone tell me...' Nobody, had told me I couldn't wear nail polish. That was all on me. A passing comment from years before had apparently scarred me. The same way when your 4th Grade Art teacher tells you you can't draw, or a relative says you're 'big' when they mean tall. These things stick with you. You absorb these comments into your psyche. You become them.
The time had come for me to say "Fuck it!" and embrace my strong, capable hands... To adorn them in girly glitter, delight in their durability - to feel the same joy as when I look down at my spectacularly sparkly pink toe nails. I'm a magpie at heart. Sparkly things make me happy. I spend most of my days typing. At the office, at home - I type. My hands are in my peripheral vision all day long. They should be tipped with glitter and glam! They should make me grin. Do I like them? Damned straight, I do! I'm 45 frickin' years old - it's time to grow up - to own what makes me... ME.