I tripled my normal tip. I cringed when my feet came out of the water, and I see them every day.

I get my pedicures done by a very friendly bunch who make up for their lack of English with excellent customer service. When the pandemic started in early March, I was months overdue. I can’t be certain, but when she lifted my winter-worn, overgrown mess out of the water, with a sweet smile on her face, I think she said “bad feet” because her co-workers giggled.

Next came the hair. My roots had given into being totally gray and the word “hag” came to mind every time I passed by a mirror. All I can say is thank goodness the salons could open back up. Even though wearing a mask isn’t one of my favorite things to do, at least I can take my shoes off now without anxiety. I’m so glad to be rid of the gray hairs that never want to play nice with the rest of the team.

I anxiously await warmer weather only to dread pulling out summer clothes. A transformation takes place underneath those layers of long-sleeved shirts, sweaters and coats that scares me into a craving for anything covered with chocolate. This time I added to the fat count with two months of worrying about the COVID while eating everything in sight.

As the fight with the virus seemed to be getting near the end, I decided to start my diet on Monday and get this stress eating under control. Then the riots started. I made a double batch of chocolate chip cookies.

Trying to avoid looking at anything from the neck down, I moved onto the eyebrows. Either way you go, waxing or plucking, it’s a painful and a slow process. I’ve tried waxing, but there can be problems if you don’t get the wax and strip of paper exactly where they need to be. After a waxing frenzy last year and a portion of my upper lip was waxed off, I turned it in for tweezers.

Since I’m denying the fact I need bifocals, it’s difficult to get close enough to the mirror to get the brows in line, so I turned for help. I approached my daughter first. It’s not like I was asking her to pluck hairs out of my ears or nose, but she was a no go.

My niece finally took on the task and we set out with a pair of tweezers, a light and a box of Kleenex. It was physically impossible for me not to sneeze or blow my nose 20 times as I wondered if this was used as a form of punishment in some faraway country.

After not seeing my sister for two months, she came for a short visit on the front porch. I can always count on her to notice any imperfections and she didn’t fail me this time either. Trying to brush a hair off my face, we realized it was still connected. It had to be at least two inches long and coming straight out of my cheek.

I knew I should have worn my mask.

Sandy Turner lives in Independence. Email her at sandydownhome@hotmail.com.

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