Unlike in the summer months, when a woman who is so inclined may take the time to have the hair on her privates trimmed and shaped into a tasteful "V", a landing strip or the first initial of her lover's name, the colder weather makes some of us a little more lax in the personal grooming department. When we're not wearing bathing suits or sundresses with bare legs on a regular basis, it's only natural to ease up on the constant hair removal.
So when an invitation for a friend's daughter's birthday pool party arrived in my inbox, my first thought was, "My vajeen is in no state for this!"
I replied "yes" for our family of four and inwardly sighed. We love being invited to and attending birthday parties, but they are not without their stresses and social requirements. Somehow, we're always the ones shopping like mad for a present and card five minutes before the event. The party itself becomes a dance of limiting sugar intake, trying to keep one of the twins from blowing out the birthday girl or boy's candles and then negotiating over the contents of the goodie bag. (No, you cannot go to preschool tomorrow with a Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles temporary tattoo on your face).
All this and I had to add getting a bikini wax to the list. Not to mention finding a bathing suit that I could wear confidently in front of other parents. Oh, and there was a special note that the Y requires all swimmers to wear a bathing cap, which is a totally cute look (said no one ever).
I knew the person I needed to help me was Svetlana, an efficient Russian woman who wielded a popsicle stick dripping with flesh-burning hot wax. She was the answer to my pre-party stresses. As time went by, though, I kept putting off my visit. Days passed. I made school lunches, wrote blog posts and gave baths. All the while, the hair on my nether regions continued to grow and grow.
On the morning of the pool party, I took one look at the forest brush in my undies that was now, no doubt, the home to several birds and woodland creatures. I let out a blood-curdling scream.
"Sally, girlfriend, I need your help," I whispered. With only one wax strip remaining, I weighed my options.
While the twins watched "Curious George" in the other room, I tore apart the cabinet under the bathroom sink, searching for an answer to my hairy situation. There, behind a bottle of Jean Naté after-bath splash, was an almost empty Sally Hansen home waxing kit.
"Sally, girlfriend, I need your help," I whispered. With only one wax strip remaining, I weighed my options. I could try to make do and show up at the party with a row of angry, red bumps on my bikini line.
Or I could go au natural.
Tossing Sally aside, I shoved a modest one-piece bathing suit into a bag with the kids' swimsuits and towels, and we made our way to the YMCA.
When we arrived, other parents and their kids were congregated in one of the party rooms. While we made small talk over sodas and juice boxes, I kept thinking how weird it was that, in a few minutes, we were all going to be half-naked and wet.
As I descended down the steps into the lukewarm water, my arms outstretched toward her, it dawned on me that this was what kids' birthday parties were about.
When my daughter and I emerged from the locker room in our bathing suits, suddenly I wasn't thinking about how I looked or who was looking at me or the fact that one of my boobs may or may not have been making a sudden, Miss-Jackson-if-you're-nasty type appearance. All I could see was the look of wonder on my little girl's face. She was ready to jump, kick and splash. In a ruffle-tushed, ice cream cone bathing suit, she was braver and more excited than I've ever seen. The water was her element.
As I descended down the steps into the lukewarm water, my arms outstretched toward her, it dawned on me that this was what kids' birthday parties were about. Strangely, they have nothing to do with the style of my pubic hair.
The party turned out to be super fun, and it helped us find a new indoor winter activity. I'll happily take the twins swimming anytime, even if it means having to wear a bathing cap.