What Happened to Your…?

You know the rule about never asking a woman if she’s pregnant?

Even if she’s so round in the belly she looks as if she’s having triplets?

You. Just. Don’t. Say. Anything.

Well, I was asked something along those lines today.

After I swam for an hour with my team, I was drying off with a towel and just throwing a dress on over my suit to go home in. I put my shoes on and turned around to grab my bag all the while talking to another swimmer who was also drying off.

When I turned to grab my bag he yelled out, “Oh my God! What happened to your calf?”

I looked up to see him looking at my calf wide eyed and with his mouth gaping open.

I glanced down and saw all of my varicose and spider veins swirling around my right calf. Looking back at him I said, “Having kids, that’s what happened to my calf.”

Well, he was pretty mortified.

As he should be.

“I’m so sorry, I just didn’t know. It looks like you had a big accident.”

“It’s fine.”

I walked away. I got my kids from the waiting area where they had patiently eaten lunch and read books for the hour that I swam and we drove home.

Only to tell you the truth, before I got home I did shed some tears. Not big sloppy boohoo tears but those silent behind the sunglasses kind.

Yes, I look at my calf and think what a nightmare but there’s always that little part of you that thinks maybe people will not really notice as much as you think they do.

And then they notice and it just feels bad.

I sulked a little but I’ve figured out what I’m going to say the next time this happens.

“Oh my God! What happened to your calf?”

“Oh this, yeah it’s bad. But what happened to your head? It’s so shiny! Although on the positive side I guess you save a lot of time in the morning getting ready.” 

This entry was posted in observations, parenting, swimming. Bookmark the permalink.

2 Responses to What Happened to Your…?

  1. Patricia Becker says:

    So sorry about the comments made by the man who obviously lacks a “sensitivity chip”. Lately, these things do not surprise me in the least. Our society is obsessed with physical perfection. As you know I suffer with a much greater vein problem than you and a few years ago, someone at work commented on the midi length skirts I wear at work. I do not even remember what the discussion was but I will tell you I remember the remark made by a so-called friend which was, “Oh, she has just terrible varicose veins!”. Trust me that was a conversation stopper in the lunch room. One can forgive innocent toddlers who say, “look at the lady with the blue legs”because they are
    innocents. I am still going to put that bathing suit on because I love the water and no one can take that from me or you.

  2. Mindy says:

    Fancy meetin’ you here!
    My sister went to a gathering at a friend’s house recently, and upon entering, said friend asked very matter of factly, “What happened to your face?!” Apparently my sis was a wee bit broken out. The friend followed up the question with, “Oh, rough week, huh?”
    If it’s any consolation, I’m sure the guy was mortified. I would have done the silent cry, too.