We escaped. We left the 20 mile radius we tend to “do life” in and went to the big city. We were Thelma and Louise – minus the crime spree. We left autism at the door. We were free!
But don’t think that freedom didn’t come at a price. We had to leave lunch and dinner ready to heat up, supplements ready-to-go, and instructions for every possible scenario.
Our agreed upon departure time was noon, however, I was ready to go by 9:30am. Molly – not so much, as she is chronically late. It was not for lack of enthusiasm, she just couldn’t find an outfit she felt was “big city shopping” worthy.
First stop – Kohl’s. Thanks Elizabeth for the great tip you gave us about the cute paisley dress! Unfortunately, they did not have it in our size. We failed miserably at finding stylish summer dresses. They were either too grandma, too fattifying, or too hoochie coochie.
So, we aborted our mission to find dresses as a replacement for our daily, unflattering, comfy, stretch pants and t-shirt ensembles. We decided to focus our efforts on make-up instead.
One little hiccup… how do you match make-up to blonde/pale orange hair? That’s right – I tried to fix my hair fiasco and walked away with shockingly orange hair. The cut is a million percent better, but the color is… well, a picture speaks a thousand words…
Not so pretty.
We headed for the Bobbi Brown section at Nordstrom’s. But were scared off by the sea of clown faced, Chuckie doll make-up artists beckoning us to their counters. We said, “Sayonara” and trekked across the mall to Sephora instead. The make-up artists in Sephora all looked like they had come back from a rave. We asked ourselves, “Are we out of touch? Where is the dewy, fresh-faced make-up we long for? Is it out of style? Why does it elude us so?”
As soon as these thoughts crossed our mind, we were accosted by a woman with flaming red hair and make-up to match, asking us to sit in the make-up chair for a consultation. I decided to go for it (Molly gave an evil cackle as I was the guinea pig). To our surprise, my make-up artist was pretty darn good. She listened and was patient and I walked away with an everyday make-up look I can be proud of. According to Molly, it makes my eyes “pop” and my face “glow from within” (minus the two “blemishes” on my cheek). Look how much fun we had in Sephora…
Molly’s turn. Molly is a fan of Bare Escentuals and insisted on going to their boutique for a consult on how to do eyes and lips. We had to wait for Molly’s appointment, so we decided to get a cup of tea to kill the time. We were shocked and dismayed when they told us the amount we owed for two measly cups of tea… we had to take out a second mortgage on our houses! Since when has tea become $5.00 a cup??
The make-up gal Molly was assigned to in Bare Escentuals looked like she was all of 13 years old. Molly requested a natural, every day look. However, she walked out sporting 10 pounds of very “un-natural” purple eyeshadow. We wondered if the girl has been formally diagnosed with MLD, “Make-up Lingo Dyslexia.”
Molly decided to risk the clown faced make up artists at Nordstrom’s because she had become obsessed with this picture which she saw at the Bobbi Brown make-up counter:
We don’t ask for much in life… was it too much to ask for our make-up to look like this… our definition of dewy, fresh-faced, 2012 make-up?
Back to Nordstrom’s we trotted. Molly got right in with the make-up artist. She asked the lady to re-create the look in the picture. However, on Molly, the eyeshadow did not look quite the same. On a twenty-something, the glitter looks pretty, but on a 30-something mom, the glitter was a little too disco. But the make-up artist did a similar look (minus the sparkles) and Molly was thrilled.
We learned a valuable lesson – don’t assume clowns can only do clown make-up. If we are ever allowed out of our cages again, we plan to make another appointment with this lady to learn additional make-up looks.
What a successful day. Both Molly and I left the mall feeling pretty, the closest we’ve felt to our pre-autism selves in a long, long time. We actually spent 6 six hours without thinking about or discussing autism, even once. We were refreshed. We had a new pep in our step.
Molly walked in her house only to be greeted by her husband who said, “What’s up make up face?”
WHOMP WHOMP… feelings of prettiness flushed down the toilet. Maybe Molly should have gotten a matching hoochie coochie dress to go with her new “face” after all.
Up next: We’re starving… new diet is in jeopardy. Stay tuned for the continuing saga of “Recovering from Recovery.” -L&M
For more “New Year, New Us” posts and our ongoing quest to recover from recovery, go to: http://ventography.wordpress.com/category/new-year-new-us/. How are you “recovering from recovery?” Please share with us your tips and suggestions.
A shout-out to http://puzzledmommy.wordpress.com/ - we love https://www.birchbox.com/. Since we don’t get out much, we love having the alternative of the latest and greatest make-up products coming right to our door. Great find.
A shout out to Rob who had the dishwasher unloaded and Annie’s bed made when I got home. You’re the greatest. -Molly
L&M CONFESSIONAL: We know we are giant hypocrites. We just blogged about the toxic ingredients found in make-up. We had good intentions to find healthy, organic make-up. But once we saw the illustrious Bobbi Brown picture, it was all over for us. Our willpower was gone. We were a marketer’s dream. We fell for the promises made by that picture… that we too, could look like doe-eyed twenty year olds and we need poison make-up to do it. Please forgive us.
MOLLY AND LEAH 2012 VERSION
In January, we made the bold decision to “recover from recovery” and reclaim our old selves.
We were in a rut and utterly exhausted from putting so much time and effort into getting our children healthier. We were slowly lulled into apathy. First, we gained some weight. Then, we no longer felt like getting dressed up, nor did we have the money to keep up with the latest fashion trends. Then, because we looked so sloppy, we were too embarrassed to go to the hoity toity hair salons that could give us a chic haircut. Then, to add insult to injury, we even stopped putting on make up. We had spiraled out of control.
Well, no more… we are returning with a vengeance (but a snail’s pace)! Meet Molly and Leah – the 2012 version.
We have kept our promise to make time for exercise. We tried running, but our bladders did not cooperate. Then, we moved to fast walking but found that our gabbing prevented us from keeping up our pace. Next, we tried doing yoga DVDs at home. We thought yoga was supposed to be peaceful and relaxing. Instead, we found it to be a torture session and we hated every minute of it. So we moved on to Pilates. We now have 2 Pilates DVDs that we enjoy doing. They are helping us tone up and we find them to be stress-relieving. Problem solved.
We knew exercise alone would not help us lose the weight. So, we made changes to our diet as well. If we could put so much time and effort into the health of our children, why not us? We tried to do the South Beach Diet, but of course, we decided we know better. We tweaked it to be South Beach “L&M style.” Even though we are not following every detail of the South Beach diet, we are proud of ourselves. We are eating healthier than ever and we are sticking to the game plan. We eat similarly to our children now. Sugar and processed foods are no longer in our diet and we are eating more vegetables than ever. Yay for us!
But maybe South Beach “L&M Style” is not as great as we think because the other day, when Leah asked Tom (her husband) if she looked any thinner, he remarked, “Yes – your shoulders look thinner.” Just what every gal longs to hear from her husband after starving and exercising for weeks!
Our diet and exercise plans were going well, so we decided to tackle our hair issues next. We had been on the hunt for a decent stylist for 2 years. Then, one day, I thought I had struck gold. I called Leah to tell her about my award-winning hair experience. I pressured her to make an appointment immediately. Two days later, Leah found herself in the stylist’s chair but sadly, she didn’t have the same experience. Things went bad fast. An hour appointment turned into a three-hour, whoopsie-doo, salon owner must fix, we feel so bad about your haircut, the cut’s on us visit. Leah left with a Dorothy Hamill cut in the front and a 1980s Salt n Pepa haircut in the back. Not the haircut that dreams are made of.
Our kryptonite remains workout/comfy pants. Our excuse… bloggers need to be comfortable. We cannot be expected to be creative in skinny jeans.
Next on our agenda – fix Leah’s hair disaster, throw out 10-year-old make-up, and learn how to put on dewy, fresh-faced, 2012 makeup. We’ll keep you posted.
Anyone want to join us in “recovering from recovery?”
-L & M
P.S. – WANTED: the perfect shade of lip gloss for blondes… all suggestions welcome.
For other “New Year, New Us” posts go to: http://ventography.wordpress.com/category/new-year-new-us/
There are very few people who understand how much it takes out of you to attempt autism recovery. For the last 4 years, I have completely forgotten who I am. I got lost in the maze of autism. I’ll be honest, I have let myself go. My name is Molly and I am an autism addict.
It all started with the lack of sleep. Annie did not begin sleeping through the night until she was 6 years old. This caused night-time food nibbling (of the donut variety) so that I had the energy to get up 8 times a night. Then, as my recovery plans were yo-yoing, I got more and more depressed. Which caused me to have a glass of wine every night just to “unwind.” Then, I stopped working out… I just didn’t have the energy anymore. As I felt worse and worse about my self-image, I eventually stopped getting properly dressed and putting on makeup every day. Yoga pants and hair in a pony tail became my standard uniform.
One day, I looked in the mirror and could hardly recognize myself. Where had the years gone? How did I go from a fairly stylish, successful career woman to a frumpy dumpy, autism obsessed mom?
So this year, my New Year’s resolution was to recover from recovery. To get back to the person I used to be. Not just physically, but mentally and emotionally as well. I am going to have a life outside of autism. During the last 4 years, I stopped doing so many of the things that used to bring me joy. I lost touch with friends, no longer had the desire/money to travel, could care less about shopping or going out to restaurants, and I lost my entrepreneurial spirit. Basically, all I wanted to do was sleep or research autism.
2012 is going to be the year I revive lost friendships, discover new passions, regain my self-esteem, and take time to do the things that bring me pleasure.
I don’t want anyone to think I am whining. Sure, I am having a bit of a “woe is me” moment. But the truth is, I’d do it all over again in a heart beat. I would live in a paper bag and smear dog poop in my hair if I had to. The net result of my last four years of effort and sacrifice is that I can now have a conversation with my daughter. Something that I once thought was inconceivable.
Nothing brings me more joy than recovering my daughter, so that will still be number one on my priority list. But, I am going to regain my sense of balance. I have gotten Annie to a good enough place where I can breathe again. So, I think it’s time for a new year, new me.
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