If you're planning to make your own masks, it's important to pay attention to the direction of the fabric.

I was so excited when I got some new masks from a national company just recently, because they featured things to do with dogs. And anyone who's met me knows that I'm all about dogs. There were three masks in the package, including one with paw prints, another with faint outlines of things like dog dishes and bones, and the third with cartoons of dogs. That was my favorite and so I immediately started wearing it. The mask is comfortable, with a nose band that helps keep my glasses from fogging up. Okay, not really, but it does make it easier to wear.

This was just before Christmas, so I was spending some time in stores, picking out presents. As I passed people, feeling so proud of my cartoon dog mask, I noticed some strange looks. People were staring at my face covering, but not with the happy recognition I'd expected. They, instead, seemed to be confused by it.

I think we've all experienced the social anxiety that can go with wearing a face covering. In the early days, especially, it felt like high school. Is my mask okay? Am I wearing it correctly? Suddenly, I was feeling some of this anxiety again, even though I knew that the mask was professionally made and had adorable pooches all over it. How could anyone resisting smiling behind their own masks when they saw it?

When I got home, I mentioned it to my husband, who told me to put the mask on, so he could see it. That's when he told me, between chuckles, that my dogs were upside down. I ran to a mirror and, sure enough, the dogs were all flat on their backs. Like they'd fallen and couldn't get up. Happy smiles on furry faces with their legs sticking straight up in the air. No wonder why people were looking at me weird.

Since that day, I've resigned myself to the fact that the mask looks a little strange. I put up with the curious looks of passers-by because I love it. It still has dogs and they're still cute. I just pretend it's naptime at the doggy daycare.

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