Why is it so important for women to feel pretty? I feel like if I could answer this question perhaps I could make my life a little more carefree – a little lighter, a little simpler. Like a man.
My bath time is my time for reflection. I don’t meditate and I use my workout time for actual workouts, got no time for savasana. So, a steaming, lavender scented bath at the end of a long day is where I spend the most time in deep thought, just trying to figure out life – at 47 with a damned good life, I’m guessing it’s my small contribution to ‘mid-life crisis’.
As I lay in the tub tonight I look down and contemplate my war wounds of the past two decades. On most days I notice my damn near perfect breasts (well, ok – they are perfect), my ripped abs, the small space where my thighs don’t touch, my slim hips and the reflection of my strong jawline and thick mane of hair pooling around my shoulders, but today I only notice the spoils of war.
A war against my true exterior. A war most men get to sit out.
I notice the scars from several breast augmentations and a mastopexy. I wanted them bigger then smaller, then bigger, then BIGGER, then smaller. Five times a charm. Oh, and once they leaked. Six.
I can’t look away from the divets in my thighs and dimples on my stomach from past liposuctions gone awry. Hell, my left hip looks like a shark took a bite out of it – even after having corrective surgery. Twice. A man wouldn’t notice it, you probably wouldn’t either – but I know it’s there.
I see barcode scars on my legs from an overzealous laser technician for laser hair removal, and a pretty marble like festoon under my right eye still filled with the remnants of black market fillers from 25 years ago.
As a sharp pain shoots up my left butt cheek, from a failed attempt at a butt lift (so tempting it was to have a perky butt without all the manual labor), I’m certain that it’s my bodies way of yelling a big ‘f*ck you’ to all I’ve put her through during the years. And she should!
Why do some woman find it so important to be pretty? And if we’re pretty already, to be prettier. And why am I one of them? Well, this is what I figure.
Men don’t understand, but woman are sized up the moment they enter the room just based on the way they look. Violet Blue, a former sex columnist at the San Francisco Chronicle, was spot on when she said:
“Most guys don’t think about what it’s like to be sized up for sexual value as the first thing anyone sees about them, everywhere they go – anytime they go online, walk into a room or try to join a conversation. Most men don’t have to deal with being a target their whole lives the way that women do.”
Out of all of the plastic surgery procedures and non-invasive beauty treatments that take place in the U.S. today, only 9.7% are men.
Men are judged by their insides, by their kindness or their ambition and work ethic. By how good a dad they are or how clean they are. By things they DO and not so strongly by how they look.
I don’t mean to drone on and on and believe me, there ain’t no soapbox that could hold me up, but be happy to know there is a point to this diatribe. So I ask, would it be easier to be a man? Would I trade my womanhood for a life of open toilet seats and a goatee?
Ultimately, the answer is a resounding NO.
Being a woman is powerful, and even though I tend to wax philosophical on occasion, ultimately I think we all do what it takes to get ahead. If for women one of those ways is beauty – well then I’m damn glad to have the foresight, and the means, to use all the tools in my toolbox.
So excuse me, I think I’ll just put on some stilettos, pout my lips and ask my man to take me shopping and still rock my beauty blog, play golf, ride that Harley and do all the things a man can do, just more, and with an edge.