I saw your stilettos as soon as they entered the room. I was hunched over trying to retrieve my two year old from under someone else’s chair. I could not help but notice the mulch from the playground stuck to the bottom of my dirty tennis shoes.
I sat up and took notice of your sleek, pencil skirt and crisp, white blouse. I found myself slouching even more than usual in a feeble attempt to disappear into the metal chair. Suddenly, I felt very uncomfortable in my t-shirt with the spit up on the shoulder and my nylon pants with the stain on one leg.
You were staring at your phone as if some urgent email or time-sensitive text was going to come through at any moment. I glanced at mine knowing that the only email I had received in three days was from the local shoe store advertising a “buy one get one half off” sale. I bought four pair – none of which were stilettos and two of which had cartoon characters.
Your floral perfume made its way across the room. It was light and feminine. Meanwhile, I smelled like a day at the park with a little regurgitated formula thrown in for good measure.
Your phone rang and I listened as you chatted with a friend. You discussed the latest happenings at the office and made plans for another girls night out. I wasn’t jealous. I just had a girls night out last week. Well, technically, it was just a trip to the grocery store and there weren’t any other girls with me. It was dark outside, however, and I did bump into a few other ladies who had apparently also sneaked out for an after-bedtime trip to the Walmart.
For just a moment, you closed your eyes. You looked tired. I knew I was tired. Then, you took a drink of the coffee in your hand. I looked down at the coffee in mine. We made eye contact and exchanged a tired-mama smile. As we drank our coffee – you with your manicure and make-up and me with my broken nails and pony tail – I realized that you and I are just not that different.