You should see me right now. My arms, legs chest and face are streaked with this horrible brown-orange stain—a blotchy, streaky reminder of the sacrifices I make as a mom. It’s pretty embarrassing. I’m not sure I want to leave the house.
Okay, so I’m definitely dramatizing this: it’s just a airbrush tanning job gone bad. But still.
It all started out so wonderfully. My friend called me and asked if I’d do her a favor. She was writing an article on “Hot Austin Spas” for a magazine and asked if I’d be willing to be a “beauty tester” and test this fancy schmancy new airbrush tanning spa downtown. Even better, since it was for the magazine, my spa treatment would be on the house. I’ve never had an airbrush tan (or, if I’m being honest, been to a fancy schmancy spa), so I couldn’t say “sign me up” fast enough.
The spa treatment was amazing! After an exfoliating wipe down, I stood in a shower-like stall and a tech carefully airbrushed me for a “healthy summer glow”. I stepped out and I was literally glowing. And, considering the fact that my natural skin tone is the color of paste and my only experience with a “healthy summer glow” involved gallons of 100 SPF and streaky self tanner, I felt pretty amazing.
As I left the spa, I sized my new tan self in the mirror as the owner shouted her warning: Whatever you do, do NOT get wet for 8 hours or you’ll streak. Easy enough, right? Wrong.
Two hours later, I was sitting on the patio with my husband while my kids played in a kiddie pool on the lawn. And, my superhero-son took a flying leap from the top of the slide and instead of landing feet-first with spiderman-like reflexes, he landed on his back and started screaming. And that’s when my mom-like reflexes kicked in.
I leaped out of my chair, ran to my screaming son and sat down with him in the kiddie pool. Hello motherhood. Goodbye perfectly applied airbrush tan.
So, for the next seven to ten days (depending on how well I “take care of it”), my arms and legs are a walking reminder of the fact that I’m a mom. And, really, what do I expect? When was the last time I left the house with my hair dried and flat ironed? Or without spit-up on my shirt? Or with perfectly tanned skin?
But the truth is, I wouldn’t have it any other way. I don’t want to be the mom with perfect hair and skin and nails. And, the truth is, if I have to walk around with streaky orange legs for a few days, I’m okay with that. Because I want to be the kind of mom who’s willing to dive into a kiddie pool to give my kids a hug.
Question for you: What little sacrifices do you make as a parent every day?