Twice a year my church does a 30-day fast. I know that traditionally people fast from food or a type of food but it seems like I’m always either nursing or pregnant and those are really bad times to fast from food for me. Not to mention my turbo-speed metabolism and low blood sugar. At some point I really want to do a food fast again, but now is not the time. Anyway, about a year ago I was praying about what to fast for one of these times and the word “make-up” (two words?) jumped into my mind. I quickly laughed the most nervous laugh I could muster (maybe something like this), and said, “That’s funny! But not, that can’t be it…” and I moved on. I think God extended me grace and let it go – a concept that I think is really cool about God and something I’ve been learning about lately, but that’s another subject.
Anyways, my church’s fast started on Thursday (it’s Saturday now) and I was again CLUELESS about what to let go of. I went through several possibilities but none really seemed right or hit home. And again, make-up came to mind. And again, I panicked.
I didn’t even start wearing makeup until my senior year of college. I went through my entire adolescence and most of college feeling like it was annoying and not a big deal. I’d put it on for special occasions, but that’s about it. Then when I got engaged the summer of junior year I felt like I had become more of an adult and I decided I really wanted to be more feminine and put-together and and tiptoed onto that slippery slope.
Once when Jeremy and I were engaged he unexpectedly dropped by my house (which he owned, but did not live in) to show it to some friends. It was 1 in the afternoon, but he was unannounced and I was…. not dressed for guests. It was embarrassing and let’s just say he and I were REAL happy with each other when they left. A few months later I went to Wal-mart in the next town over in sweats and no make-up thinking, who will I see? and we ran into the SAME couple from our church. It’s happened again since then. Anyways, I was pretty red-faced and I wondered, What happened to the girl I used to be who didn’t care?
Now that I have a daughter I think about it a lot. I don’t want her to grow up thinking she needs make-up to look pretty or put-together or even to look professional. I think it’s hilarious that Malachi likes to “do his make-up” with me but I want to show my kids some balance. So Wednesday night at small group I mentioned that I had “considered” fasting from make-up but dot dot dot. Then the next day I saw one of my friends say that’s what she chose and how hard and easy it was at the same time and this girl – let me tell you, she challenges me in every way and it hit home.
So this morning I got ready. Looked at the calendar for the month to see if anything important was coming up (shameful). Fixed my hair. Curled my eyelashes. Prayed. And then looked in the mirror and said “What’s even the point of having a good hair day if my face is gonna look that ugly? UUUGGHHH!!!” and I put make-up on. And you know what? I felt spiritually and emotionally crappy all day. All. day.
I get it, God. I know what you are asking and I hate it but I’m going to do it anyways. And some of you reading this are probably rolling your eyes thinking I am the most melodramatic and shallow girl in the world and….maybe you are right. But this is HARD for me.
Originally I decided to post about this for the selfish reason of EXPLAINING myself so that when people saw me in public they would remember, Oh yeah, she’s FASTING. But then I realized that blogging about this is the cruelest and best kind of accountability because there ain’t no going back now.
Prayers (and comments) appreciated.