On January 1, 1999, Marc and I moved to Stony Brook, NY. We moved there to work at The Stony Brook School, in our quest to grow in understanding and practice of Christian community. While we were there, we certainly got that, and much more.
One thing that surprised me, however was the learning of a totally new culture every time I left campus -- Long Island, NY. It was a difficult time of learning for me. But at the end of our four years there, I found the culture amusing and endearing.
One of the ways that I grew and actually got some healing was in the way that women take care of themselves. Even for a quick run to the market to get milk, every woman was totally put together. Pedicures and manicures are not a luxury but a standard way of life! Even after my four years in Boston, I was totally baffled and unprepared. I grew up in Maine! Land of the baggy flannel shirt and sweatshirts - to dress up! Comfort first, and the 'natural' look.
By the time we moved from Long Island, not only had I tried the pedicure and manicure, but I love them. They are still a treat for me, but not an OUTRAGEOUS treat. I had spent enough time putting on makeup (to buy milk) to realized that not only did it look nice, but it made me feel nice, and was a way to love on Marc.
Upon moving back to Maine, I thought I would enjoy returning to my 'natural ways', but I have maybe gone to the grocery store 3times without makeup in the four years we've been here.
But today, I achieved all out liberation. Because we are having our party tonight, the kids and I spent the morning cleaning the patio. I REALLY needed to go grocery shopping. I looked at my hot, dirty, not showered since Wednesday self (who btw was not wearing a bra) and decided to join the masses of Maine women and go shopping as my 'natural self'.
(Now I need to go shower and paint my toe-nails.)