Why I Wait Until Right Before I’m About to Dig in the Mud to Paint My Nails

There’s never a good time to paint your nails: Whenever you think you have a free moment to be rendered handless while your manicure dries, it always turns out that you have to urgently do the dishes or fold the laundry or sort through a big bag of cotton balls with your bare hands. Inevitably, you always get antsy and try doing the dishes anyway, only to end up smearing nine out of 10 nails and repressing the urge to scream.


It’s for this reason that I decided to drop the act altogether – vowing to only paint my nails right before I’m about to do some haphazard digging in the mud.


Being free from the anxiety of not wanting to mess up my nails has made my decision worth it. Now, I know my nails are going to get messed up – I don’t have to stew in my own restlessness or beat around the bush about whether or not I’m going to eat that sloppy joe while my nails are still sticky and wet.


Now there’s no if, or when, or how – it’s going to be now, and because I’m knuckle deep in a heap of muck.



While this decision has certainly made my nail-painting schedule sporadic and unpredictable (I never know when I’m going to stumble across a good mud hole), it has also opened up the rest of my life to be free of the agony of trying halfheartedly not to mess up my nails.


Because of what I’m calling my “mud decree,” I can now say “Yes!” to holding my sister’s baby without fear that I’ll stain it Cherry Red in the process. I can read my friend’s copy of War and Peace, comforted by the knowledge that I’m not dripping Lincoln Park After Dark all over the good parts. I can high five and fist bump and awkwardly side hug with abandon, knowing my friends are safe from the repercussions of my half-dried Olive Green nails.


In fact, all nail polish related incidents have now been confined solely to my digging in the mud time. Granted, I’ll never be able to paint my nails without expeditiously ruining them again and the only color my nails will ever end up being painted is “Slop Brown” – but I will also get to live the rest of my life worry free, enjoy my friends and hobbies more than ever, and feel encouraged to doll up my dirty little paws before clawing my way into some wet earth and shaking hands with the worms. In short: It’s totally worth it.