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The Real Lipstick Jungle

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Momlogic's Julie says the day of her 4-year-old daughter's dance recital was supposed to be perfect...but was almost ruined by a tube of burgundy lipstick.


My daughter had been looking forward to her dance recital for months. I'd spent over $100 on the custom pink and white costume, complete with pink lame gloves and head scarf. She had rehearsed her "Hannah Montana" routine what seemed like hundreds of times. I was sure the day would be picture perfect.


That morning, I got her dressed and ready. She wanted to wear lipstick for the occasion, and -- although I had visions of Jon Benet running through my head -- I agreed. Just as I was going to put it on her, the phone rang. It was another mother who couldn't figure out how to apply the head scarf. As I attempted to give her pointers, my daughter got right in my face and grabbed the lipstick tube. "Please, Mommy, please!" she pleaded, although I was clearly on. the. phone. (Why do toddlers love to vie for your attention when you're on the freaking phone? Is mine the only one?)

I was trying to wave off my daughter, silently mouthing "one second," when it happened. You guessed it: She dropped the open tube of lipstick down the white bodysuit. I watched in slow motion as the deep burgundy stripe streaked the pristine white costume. NOOOOOOOO!

What did I do? Probably what any mother would: I sank down on the floor and cried. Why do these things always happen on important days like this?

The sound of my daughter sobbing snapped me out of my crying jag. I went into "fix it" mode, telling her it was going to be "fine, just fine." I Googled "lipstick stain," tried all the home remedies I could in the 10 minutes I had before we needed to leave, but nothing worked. In a flash of brilliance, my husband said, "White-Out!" A few minutes later, I was painting White-Out on my daughter's costume. Sure, it looked crappy up close, but I was sure no one would be able to see it from the stage. She was happy, I was happy. All better.

An hour later, she was dancing up a storm on stage to Hannah Montana's "Nobody's Perfect," and I thought how true that was...nobody's perfect: not her, commanding my attention and dropping the lipstick; not me, crying about it like it was some big deal. Under the lights, no one could see the streaks of White-Out or the lipstick residue. They could only see a precious little girl, dancing her little heart out. And she was beautiful.

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2 comments so far | Post a comment now
Anonymous July 12, 2008, 9:40 AM
and oh so true of motherhood!!

Arerdna July 12, 2008, 11:08 AM

i love this story and your daughter is so darn beautiful!!

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