Yesterday, a woman I work with came to me with a problem. I listened and then gave my response, intending to fix the problem. While I was speaking, she suddenly interrupted me to say, “wow, you have the most beautiful fingernails, especially since they’re real!”
I was astonished. I’m pretty sure that in my 34 years of living that is the first time a stranger has ever complimented my fingernails.
For those who don’t know this about me, I’ve pretty much always had an obsession about fingernails. I love the look of long, natural nails. Unfortunately, no matter what I did, no matter what products I bought, I never, ever had those kind of nails. In fact, I wanted long nails so badly that I actually paid for acrylic nails for years and years.
Fun story, one of the founding moments of my friendship with Kelly was over her long beautiful nails. In the computer lab (surely after a grueling hour of Oregon Trail) I turned to the new girl in line and asked, “how do you get your nails to grow so long?” “I drink milk,” she replied.
An answer like that got her a lifelong friend instead of a punch in the nose, but that solution didn’t work. I drink gallons of milk and always have, but my nails never grew.
Somehow, in the past few months, my nails have been changing. I’m not sure why, the magic of being 34, perhaps? Either way, suddenly my nails are the naturally beautiful nails I’ve longed for my whole life. I kind of live in fear that one day they’ll go back to the way they were, but for the moment, I’ve finally got the nails I’ve always wished for.
And when that woman complimented me, I wanted to hug her. It was genuine and kind and she had no idea what it meant to me, but it was a moment that has kept me smiling with happiness for more than 24 hours.
Moral of the story? If you think of a compliment about someone…say it. You never know, they might have been waiting a long time to hear that.