I knew I had made it when I started neglecting my feet. My toenails had not been painted in months. The pale pink nails started to look gray, my feet sallow.
Maybe they had always been this way when natural but I just hadn’t noticed. They were, had been, always painted bright red. This was true since I was fourteen. Before then, I switched the color up. Not too much. But enough so that variety was routine. One week, mauve or a pearly shimmer. Hot pink. Neon yellow. Electric blue. White. Violet. Black.