Tag Archives: awakening

Shaving

One of the sweetest commercials I think I’ve ever seen s a new release…a father shows his daughter how to shave her legs for the first time.  She nicks her leg and her dad is quick to gently apply a spot of tissue paper.

Shaving one’s legs for the first time is a rite of passage for a young teenager.  It is almost as significant as menstruation.  For me, both events were momentous. One an act almost of rebellion, the other nature’s call to a new life, both a personal emergence into womanhood.

My mother didn’t want me to shave.  She never had.  But whereas her legs were smooth, with few hairs, mine were hairy, like my Dad’s.  They may have been golden blonde but I felt like a furry beast.

I was fourteen when I shaved my legs for the first time.  It was the year of my emergence.  I had lost the baby weight, exchanged cat’s eyeglasses for wireless ones, and got my period. I was ready, even if my mother was not and wouldn’t dream of asking for help.

My family was up at our summer cabin and friends of the family were visiting. One day Mom and her friend, Bunny, went out for a few hours, leaving me in charge of six kids.  I snuck into the bathroom and furtively proceeded to butcher my legs.  No shaving cream, no water, just raw steel.  I was bleeding out.  There were tissue paper and band-aids in wide swaths everywhere you looked.

When Mom and Bunny returned, they looked askance at my legs but to Mom’s credit, she didn’t say a word.  I stuttered, “Mom, the razor fell off the shelf and fell down my leg.  When I put it back up, it fell again, running down the other leg.”  They kept straight faces.

The next day my Mom approached me, saying “You do realize you will have to shave now for the rest of your life.”  “That’s quite all right Mom.”  I savored the sweet victory, even as I winced moving around.

Beginnings

picture by Marty
Spring has announced its presence,
birds are pecking pungent soil,
sniffing air – content the remain
until the changing tides of autumn’s
gusty, chill bidden breezes.
Flowers are poking their heads
through moist, fragrant earth,
beginning to make their presence known,
butterflies begin unravelling cocoons.

All this is to let you know
the time has come
to vacate those dark corners
and seek light breezes
and cozy, sunny places
in the glistening morn.

For gloomy thoughts
and reluctant bodies have no place
in the glorious melodies of Spring.
So cast off those Winter chains
and break those bonds . . .
become as free as the winds.

A happy mind makes a happy worker
be she drone or queen.
And content people are more apt
to be productive, accepting of their lot
and enthusiastic regarding
their performance.

This is a general service announcement
for the disheartened, disgruntled,
disillusioned, discombobulated,
and thoroughly disheveled
Winter rung philistines.