Pedicures and Pity

Is it too much to ask to just go to the nail salon and enjoy a little pampering, a little sloughing of the feet, a little leg massage, and some freshly painted piggies?  That’s all I was attempting to do the other day.  I walked in, picked my pink-colored polish from the rows upon rows of similarly colored pink polishes, rolled up my jeans as far as they would go, and stepped into the hot, swirling, basin of chemical blue water.  Sweet Foot Soaking Jesus.  This is just what the doctor ordered.  I set my massage chair to the “jiggle all my stomach fat around and punch me in the shoulder blades” setting and settled in with my iPhone to peruse Twitter and Facebook and read email for 45 minutes with only the minor interruptions that come with the intermittent banter that one must have with a male nail technician with an incredibly limited English vocabulary:

“Water ok?” (perfect.)

“What kind pedicure you want?” (deluxe, with extra leg massage, please.)

“You want nails cut or file?” (cut, please.)

It’s the perfect relationship.  I was just crossing the border to my happy place when entered nine months pregnant lady and her mom.  They sat just across from me and we exchanged the smiles that people do when forced to sit facing one another.  They began chatting amongst themselves and I was pleased to find that they were not a distraction from the sweet, sweet reverie that me and my Vietnamese buddy were creating together.

But just as all good things must come to an end…my good thing came to a screeching halt when Miss Bleached Blonde came strolling in with an air about her that screamed, “Hey, you guys!!  Please look at me in my totally inappropriate summer outfit and giant, white, platform sandals in which I can hardly walk that I’ve matched with a seasonally unrealistic fake tan and a gigantic, stark white, designer leather purse– even though it’s only about 59 degrees outside!!”  

She thought she was the cat’s pajamas, but I just glanced and thought to myself, “If they ever needed a cast member for the Real Housewives of Baltimore…she’d be the train wreck that all the other housewives would gang up against and ostracize.”

I wish it ended there, but that was just the beginning.  She sat down in the chair next to me.  Figures.

She started to strike up a conversation with the pregnant woman and her mom.  Highlights of the conversation early on included the basics:

“When are you due?”

“Do you know what you’re having?”

“How are you feeling?”

Then it got weird…

for me.

Bleached Blond Barfbag (BBB): “So, is this your first?”

Pregnant Lady:  “Yes, and I just got married last June.  So in August I was shocked to find out I was pregnant.  We weren’t planning for this so soon.”

Mind you, by this point, my Vietnamese man might as well have stuck my feet in a bucket of shards of glass because I was no longer enveloped in my foot pampering experience and I was instead focusing, unsuccessfully, on how to tune out this whole conversation that was happening around me.

And then…

BBB: “Oh yeah, I totally know what you mean.  You know, you just have to feel so sorry for those women who can’t get pregnant and have to go to the doctors and do all that fertility stuff and all that.  I mean, I sneezed and got pregnant with my first one, and then BAM!  I got pregnant again right after that.  I’m just totally fertile.  I couldn’t imagine being one of those women who can’t get pregnant.”

Ok, so….I’ve never actually walked a fine line, but if the weight of a thread could support me, that would pretty much be the fineness of the line I felt I was on.  In my head, I was basically daring this dipshit to look over at me and ask me if I had any children.  In fact, for a few minutes, I daydreamed about all the colorful words I would say at her, and tell her what an inconsiderate idiot she sounded like, and how she should think before she speaks. Then, I imagined all the Vietnamese nail technicians who, until this point, had been quietly focused on the pairs of feet in front of them suddenly breaking into whatever the Vietnamese chatter equivalent of, “Oh, Damn!  No she didn’t!!! Did you hear that?  She totally told that dumb blond how stupid she is. You go, girl.”  Then I imagined spilling Whore Red (I’m sure that’s an actual color) nail polish all over her ugly white bag and watching her shrivel up like a slug covered in salt.

I came to from my warped daydream. I just decided to keep my mouth shut and just prayed that she would shut up too.

There’s a part of me that was so irritated by her comments and continues to be so (obviously, or I wouldn’t have taken the time to write this).  To think that a woman could be so blindly insensitive and offensive to such a large segment of women affected by infertility, including ME… sitting right there next to her.  I guess it doesn’t necessarily surprise me, but it does sadden me. Being infertile is no walk in the park, that’s for sure. But it’s humbling and I think most women who struggle with infertility will tell you that the experience has taught them that they are stronger than they ever realized and are most definitely not in need of anyone’s pity.

So maybe it’s a good thing that BBB couldn’t imagine being infertile, because clearly she has a hard enough time dressing herself properly and making informed decisions about when and where to wear white and how to employ social etiquette when carrying on a conversation in a public place with strangers.  Perhaps it’s me that should be pitying her.

Still, I guess my daydream could have gotten a lot worse:


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