STRIPPED – I Do It For Me.

Lying on the table with only a thin sheet of tissue paper separating me from the slab below, my eyes dart nervously around the room waiting for her to return.  Each twitch of my body sets off a series of uncomfortable crinkling noises that only leave me feeling more vulnerable and self-conscious.

Surrounded by four completely bare white walls, the smell of sanitizer permeates the entire room and practically engulfs me.

Tick. Tock. Tick. Tock.

Her voice rings in my ears like a gentle echo, “You can undress now.”

Dunce dun dun. Dunce Dunce dun dunce. Dun. Dun dunce.  I rest my eyes for a few moments as music streams into the room from hidden speakers.  Left alone with nothing but the notes of the song to keep me company, my mind wanders to all the errands I have to run later in the day, to all the work that needs to get done by the end of the week, and to all the people I need to please in life.

I hear a soft knock on the door and her voice carries through from the other side, “Are you ready, Meaghan?  Can I come in?”

My eyes flicker open and after a  pause,  I swallow hard before squeaking out a feeble, “Yes.”

She quietly enters the room.  I grimace.  After a long eight weeks, the moment has come.  Something I have spent the last couple of months waiting for, torn between both excited anticipation and dread.

It is time once again for The Brazilian.

To hair or not to hair – that is my question.  And today, it’s not to hair.  At the ripe old age of 25, I can at least say I’m no novice when it comes to The Brazilian but I’d be lying if I said it’s a walk in the park.  A trend that’s seen wild popularity and massive growth in the past thirty years, waxing often elicits strong reactions from both sides of the question.  And not without good reason.

It’s hard to disagree with arguments like, “Hair growth is a natural function of our bodies,” but sometimes it’s nice to shake things up a bit.  A change of scenery isn’t always such a bad thing.

Bald, landing strip, vajazzled – every other month, women all over the world are faced with these daunting decisions.  And it is this hairy situation I found myself in this past Saturday at 10 in the morning.

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Oddly enough, these AM sessions have come to hold a special place in my heart.  These almost monthly intimate rendezvous with my waxer are often the most action I’ve received in ages.  More than a stranger, not quite a lover, she delves into the nooks, cracks, and chasms of my body (and soul) that not even I knew existed.

Gentle, yet firm, she knows me like no other person.  “All of it today?” she asks as she snaps on a pair of gloves.

“All gone.” I say firmly.

She nods before reaching over to spread my left leg, bending it at the knee to create a half diamond.  Smooth, even strokes of warm wax are applied, followed by the clean white rectangle strip of cloth.  Before I even have a chance to take a breath – RIP.  Then again quick like a ninja – RIP.  RIP RIP. RIIIIP.

An involuntary twitch of my leg indicates my discomfort.  “You doing okay?”

Except for the fact that I feel a stinging sensation that must feel something like fire and that I’m essentially weeping, all is good.  I chirp “Yeep,”  (Lie.)  “I’m fine.”  (Another lie.)

I close my eyes and focus on the sound of music still streaming into our tiny room.  Dun Dun Dunce dun dun dunce.  Dun.  Dun.   Moments later, the ripping stops.  With a sigh of relief, my eyelids pop open.

“Left side is finished.”

A little part of me dies inside.

She repeats the same routine on the right side, spreading my right leg and bending it at the knee to complete the diamond.  Once again, I close my eyes and disappear into my happy place.  An eternity later, the rubbing, prodding, and spreading comes to an end.  I feel the cooling sensation of her smoothing aloe over my inflamed skin that is now the bright red colour of a fire engine.

“Time to turn over.”

To my  ever pleasant surprise, it’s one spread and two quick rips and we’re done.  Just like that, our date is over.  Still lying on the table, I turn to watch her leave.  She wishes me a good day and before turning the door, she says in her sing-song voice, almost teasingly, “See you in six weeks.”

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Hearing the door close behind her, I lie for just a minute longer relishing my solitude before popping up from the table.  I walk over to the full length mirror propped against the white wall where I examine her work.

Bald.  Completely bald.  Like a foreign and exotic stranger to me, I must examine it further.

Smooth.  So smooth.  And such a clean feeling.  My secret – one shared between only the two of us.  She and I.  I take my time redressing and as I leave the room that has been my shelter of safety for the past twenty minutes, I know that I strip for nobody else but me.

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