A Time to Rub Feet

When your only wardrobe options are ugly panties and cocktail dresses, you know it’s time for laundry.

Deciding I couldn’t actually go to work in a little black dress tomorrow, no matter how sexy and curve-defining it is on me, I finally gave in and paid the extra $10 to have someone else do my laundry for me today. I became one of those city-folk who simply didn’t have the time: today is my only day without an “extra-curricular” activity after work, and if I needed to clock three miles before the gym closed, buy groceries, and write a few freelance posts – I couldn’t waste time at the mat.

I’ll give credit to my friend K who only had great things to say about sending her wash away, amazed I hadn’t given in yet – and welcomed me to New York when I agreed. It was a great investment of my hard-earned cash, especially since it’ll be ready tomorrow morning before work, folded, and waiting at the door for me. It’s because of this decision that I’m sitting, writing, in running clothes (only thing I have left), eating a delectable dinner consisting of humus, pretzel crisps, and orange juice, after a killer run and deciding if I’ll go to bed early or watch last season’s Project Runway.

After dropping off my 30-pound bag of separated whites and blacks, I called my dear friend L, whose voice always make me feel at home. Our bond, like the very best of friendships is one that knows no distance and has no boundaries. We pick up right where we left off and when I have an irrational fear or pestering doubt, her name is quick to appear in my phone. We get each other in a way that only best friends can get one another, and if I was to put it into words, it wouldn’t even hold a candle to the reality of feeling it.

As we try to each week (and usually fail miserably at with our respective busy lives) we caught each other on the ins and the outs of our day-to-day’s, with emotional, irrational outbursts sprinkled here and there, too. A newlywed, she talked about her new apartment, new town, new job, and the endless laundry that took four loads and five hours on Saturday. I talked about freelancing gigs, Mr. Possibility, my messy apartment and busy upcoming week, and the fun of the last weekend.

In response to my giddiness, she said: “You’re just a big ol’ black hole of happiness! I don’t even know if I can talk to you!” We giggled for a second and I reminded her there is bad in my life but that I’m trying to focus on what I’m blessed to have. Then, as I’m forever intrigued by the life of a married 20-something because it’s so far from what I want right now in my life, I ask her to leave the room so she can dish on the hubby. She instantly agrees and heads out, but less than a second later, she is distracted, exchanging some words with Mr. L and then says, “Well, we’ll have to talk about that another time.” Annoyed, I snapped back: “You don’t have to listen to him, he isn’t the boss of you!” She replied, “I was just rubbing his feet before you called. He had a rough day.” I probably said a few unkind words toward Mr. L and she asked if Mr. Possibility did sweet things like rub my feet instead of asking for the favor for himself, and then we eventually hopped off the phone.

While I was running, I couldn’t get the sour taste or visual image of Mr. L asking my friend to rub his feet while she was on the phone with me. It didn’t make sense why he couldn’t wait twenty minutes or why she obeyed him in the first place. I ran faster to distract myself, but by the end of my run, I still felt the need to call her and beg her to mouth off to him.

And then Mr. Possibility texted me from a meeting he had to attend for work: “What are you doing? I’m bored to tears.” Or translated into his language, “Entertain me! Humor me! Keep me awake at this stupid thing I have to go to!”

And so, while finishing up my to-do list, walking back to my apartment, making phone calls, and writing this post, I chatted with him. It wasn’t that I didn’t want to or that I minded, but it wasn’t my top priority. But I did it because he needed me to and because I care about him.

I wasn’t rubbing his feet – but I was comforting him. And while one is rather gross and requires me to wear gloves (ew, I do not like feet!), both tasks remind us to be unselfish. They also means knowing when to put aside yourself and do something for someone you love. I may not rub feet, but I’ll stroke ego and I’ll build pride, especially for someone who would do the same for me. Like for everything there is a season, there is a time to rub feet and receive text messages, and when to be of service to your partner or your friends.

So instead of igniting a fight between L and her Mr., I decided to bite my tongue. After all – it would be a little hypocritical of me. While I think he could have waited for her to end our conversation, I also interrupted their night with a ring, and while I came first in her life, he’s the one who sees her every single day. And who has promised to support her until her last breath – so I’ll hope if she asked for a nice rub down, he’d return the favor. Regardless if his friend fromNew York was on the phone or not.

Gratitude for today: I’m thankful for the clarity I find from the conversations I have with those who mean the most to me.

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2 thoughts on “A Time to Rub Feet

  1. pssst, they’ll separate the whites and colors for you. and it doesn’t cost extra!

    seriously though, one of the greatest things about living in new york is having it be socially acceptable to pay other people to do your laundry.

  2. Your friends husband had no business asking his wife for a foot massage while she was on the phone with you. If you have not spoken in months, that was a special call, and he had no business acting squirrelly for attention during it.

    Sounds like you may love New York, but the men certainly leave a lot to be desired in the way of chivalry, personality and I’m not sure what else. But a great place to write a dating blog.

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