Wake Up Call (Poem)

(For the Cast of Sephora)

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There are mornings when I wake up and wonder

Who stole my beautiful?

Was it the same gremlins that steal half my socks out of the dryer?

Are they small and invisible?

These stealthy life ruiners

And where do they go in the daytime?

I stare into my mirror and pray to the beauty gods for something better

And when no magic happens

It’s to the car, to the mall, to Sephora I go

For lipstick and blush and foundation and more

I blend and smooth and brush and set

And THEN the face I remember emerges

See, my own skin betrays me sometimes

My swimsuit mysteriously becomes too tight

My cocktail jewelry turns envious on hot days but  

I can always beat this face and walk boldly into the world

I can become any face in a magazine

And that is power

So, call me Clark Kent or superman cuz I’m both some days 

I played in make-up before I was even allowed to

Learned to make my eyes pop by testing shades from the local drugstore

I saved my money to buy chapstick that made my lips glisten

But everyone doesn’t know that magic fairy dust comes standard with every brush purchase

And so it is for her that I say:

You are the gatekeepers of beauty

On your feet for hours and hours 

It is you who knows the secrets YouTube tutorials say nothing about

You got the product of the week on lock because you tested it out weeks ago

And these, these are the things she needs to know

She will stumble in the doors

Shrink in the bright lights

She knows nothing but that she needs you

And a simple smile goes a long way

Hand her the keys to the boy she longs to kiss

Blend those blemishes so she can focus on her tests not her acne

Give him the scent to brings her to her knees

Bag the shade that makes her remember her youth

Remind her that aging is glorious

That wrinkles are characteristic of age, not to define how she lives

Your job my feel trivial some day

Your job, trivial some say  

But that woman who walks in brave enough to ask for help

Is counting on you being there on purpose

Is counting on you recognizing your authority

She’s hoping you have an answer to the questions she may choke to ask

Her throat may swallow the words

But listen closely and you will hear

“I want to feel beautiful”

So sink into the bigger opportunity

Your "hello" could be the first step to self-love

To the first time someone considers believing they are beautiful 

And wouldn’t you want to have your hand in that?

Wouldn’t you want to be the person who noticed those gorgeous brown eyes?

Those cheek bones

Those daffodil lips

Don’t you want to be a part of someone seeing who they actually are for the first time?

Because THAT is what you were hired for

To be fairy god people to every soul who walks in those doors

And some days, life will kick your ass

Some customers will be more comfortable thinking they are ugly, when you only see beautiful in them

You might wake up feeling like your dreams are too distant to chase

Your makeup might refuse to set and you could hit every single red light

But out the window, you might intercept a woman with an  “I love myself” smile

And THAT is contagious

So take a deep breath and get sick with it

Then allow your smile to infect everyone around you

Cuz you never know if tomorrow is the day someone could wake up wondering

How did I go so long not feeling THIS  beautiful?