Tuesday, September 30, 2008

Seeing red. Not THAT red.

My wife is awesome. I consider myself so lucky to have her. She is funny, smart, kind, and all the things you look for in a spouse. She even does a ton of household chores. She is also generally pretty good at dodging bullets. For example, she always responds to "Do I look fat in this dress" questions by proclaiming her love for me no matter what I am wearing. See? Smart and savvy.

So you can imagine my surprise (and dismay) when she came home from work, looked at me, and asked, "Are you wearing makeup, or is your face just really red?"


(Um, yes, I shamefacedly admit to putting on a dash of makeup today in an attempt to feel just a smidge better about my body image that is at an all time low with a big event looming on the horizon. And yes, I have been watching What Not to Wear. I shouldn't, but I do. There. I have ripped open my very soul to share with you my deepest shame. Maybe shames, since I put on makeup too. It is not something I do often, which was part of my partner's argument when I got rather upset with her. Let's get back to that story now, shall we?)

She tried a few ways to explain herself. 1) I never wear makeup, so even though she thought I was wearing blush, she couldn't imagine that it was really true and that I would tease her for thinking I would put on makeup. ahem.... 2) Who says it is bad to be red? People look healthy and vibrant, a blush on the cheeks, etc.... 3) OK, I don't remember any more, but I am sure there were some while I was busy pitching a fit.

What she meant really wasn't bad. She wasn't calling me a clown faced girl or implying I had hives or acne or was just repulsive in some reddish way. I get that. Now. But my little self conscious ears heard it differently then. You have to admit, the sentence "Are you wearing makeup, or are you just really red" is not one of the recommended top ten pickup lines in Cosmo. It is not Oprah's latest guru's trick to help spice up your marriage. It is not really anything anyone wants to hear. Or maybe that's just me.

She explained herself, I understood. And as I walked out the door, she grinned her winningest grin and said, "Hey honey, you look really pretty. And that shirt makes your face look really red!"

OK, that time it was funny....

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