"Everything that is really great and inspiring is created by the individual who can labor in freedom" Albert Einstein

"A dame who knows the ropes isn't likely to get tied up." Mae West

Tuesday, January 22, 2008

Something's Stalking Me

Driving back from the bigger town Sunday morning, I glanced in my rear view mirror at a car behind me and caught a glimpse of it. I wasn't sure if it was real, so I looked in the mirror again. Because the sun was brightly shining, there was no mistake about it. That line just below my right lower lip wasn't a wrinkle as I had hoped. No, it was dark, and about an inch long, and it was back.

It all started with the sustenance of a mole that developed on my lower lip in high school. The mole appeared during puberty, and in adolescence it was easy to dismiss it as a "beauty mark." But in my twenties, the mole started producing hair, especially a certain dark long one that seemed to stand out among the tiny blond fuzz around it. It was just screaming to be plucked and so began the battle.

A decade of plucking my uni-brow had yielded two separate eyebrows with no further yanking necessary. So, I thought, would be the demise of this renegade mole hair. Every six weeks I would pluck it out of the mole mound and six weeks later the strand would reappear, as long and dark as ever. It never seemed to have any sort of growing cycle. It simply reappeared fully grown at that entire inch size.

After fifteen years of unrelenting plucking and regeneration, the "aha" moment occurred. If the mole is providing fodder for the follicle, get rid of the mole. A 45 minute out-patient procedure with a plastic surgeon, five stitches, $2500 out of my pocket, and I was rid of the mole and the hair forever - or so I thought. Two weeks after the six week healing process, it returned.

For almost 40 years now, the war between stubborn hair and stubborn host continues. Neither will acquiesce. We both intend to win the war, despite each losing battles along the way.

Both a little more gray and withered than our youth, our uncompromising determination is never shaken, although the battles have become fewer. The hair has now changed tactics: it doesn't reappear quite so regularly and often at unsuspecting times, especially in the car or at a movie theater. Perhaps my eyesight just doesn't catch it nearly so soon, but when it is discovered, I've gotten considerably better at jerking the thing out with just my fingernails.

We've gotten a bit more comfortable with each other, but we're still not quite friends. It is truly a love-hate relationship. If I do win the war, and I fully plan to, I admit I'll miss tugging on that hair in moments of quiet desperation far away from tweezers. But not that much.


Going Like Sixty said...

My biggest fear is that I will become infirm with no family around to care, and my "top of nose" hair will grow so long I will begin to swat at it, and they will put me in a rubber room.

Edna said...

You only have one hair? How lucky can you get?