I only saw the real length of my mother’s eyebrows in the early morning.
Short, short stubs of eye covering. By breakfast, though, the brows were back, sometimes with a vengeance. She drew them on with a black pencil. I mean black. She may have had a steady hand but they were entirely too dark and severe for her face. Sometimes, she would try a different shape and I wasn’t sure if she was angry or very shocked!
This is her, and my older sister, going through what must have been the Claudette Colbert phase:
Here’s what I was born with:
No, in fact, lately it seems I’m losing what I’ve fought to grow all of these years.
Or, my husband, Noah, thinks I might be losing my mind. It might actually be a bit of both. I’ve only become obsessed with this in recent months and I think I’m getting to that age where I’m worried about turning into my mother.
I talked to a friend about this irrational fear. We felt like women dreaded turning into their mothers more than men worried about becoming their fathers. We have no proof of that, we were just citing our own experiences.
Then I found this, “Women turn into their mothers by 32!” And promptly flipped the fuck out. I felt like Oedipus, finding out I no longer had free will. (mind you, there’s no actual science in this article and it’s from the NY Post)
This explains my trip to Sephora and getting my eyebrows filled in by a woman who looked like:
- Becoming socially conservative
- Loosening people’s tight ponytails without their consent
- Sitting up straighter
- Saying things like: “That’s a piss-poor excuse!”
- Buying things because I’m bored or it will change my life!
The last “mom-ism” is what led me to buy the $20 eyebrow tool at Sephora. The woman with tattooed eyebrows said I wouldn’t have to tweeze or thread at his point, “it’s a matter of filling in what you’ve got.” Ha.
And now I, for the first time in my life, I have noticeable eyebrows. I have mixed feelings about them. It’s nice to finally see them and I believe they give my face some new dimension. On the other hand, I now have to keep it up. It might be really noticeable if I leave the house without my eyebrows. This is what it feels like to live a lie. I wonder if that’s how my mother felt when she was 28?
At night I wash my face of all makeup and look like a whole other woman. I look like her. While I stare at my face, I can hear her voice.
“My god, Charish. Don’t wear so much makeup, that when you take it off at night, you can’t even recognize yourself.”