I forgot what it is like to wear a dress. I use to live in dresses and skirts but along the way, I had picked up shorts and switched over to jeans. My cupboard no longer boasts summer dresses or am I really wearing a skirt, skirts and while I think leaving the short skirts behind was a smart move, ditching the dresses was perhaps not.
Since leaving high school and stopping the 3km walk a day and transitioning to a seated job, I developed a bit of unwanted padding on my body. Which, over the past few years has been, hard for me to accept.
I have noticed that the top of my arms is more wobbly than I would like and I developed a complex. As a result, I stopped reaching for my strappy tee’s and dresses and rather grab something with a sleeve. My thighs are another sore spot for me and instead of wearing dresses that show off my legs I have hidden them with pants. I have even started to avoid the shorts in my cupboard.
This past weekend I went shopping for clothing to wear to a university event. I am accompanying Jobby and the dress code is smart casual. I tried on things I already had in my cupboard and at the end of it, I just felt so down and negative about my own body. In the shop, I dreaded trying on clothes. I had a hard time picking clothing and looking at the sizes all the while comparing my current self to my past self.
However, a few minutes in the changing room and I was feeling better. I felt good in some of my clothing choices and that made me happy. Today I am wearing one of the two dresses I bought.
I had forgotten the feeling of the hem catching the back of my leg and the free movement. I forgot that you need to be careful when sitting. I forgot that when the wind blows, the dress goes with it. I forgot what it was like to hear ‘I love your dress’ and I can’t believe I have denied myself the pleasure of feeling confident in a dress. I now have a dress that I can confidently wear to meetings and events. Sure it’s not a summer dress but I am strongly considering getting a few to see me through the season.
I forgot that I am a dress person and let myself drown in negative thoughts about what I look good in. Dark thoughts about why I can’t wear that knee-length dress because when I sit it will show what I don’t want others to see. How I must always wear sleeves because my arms are disgusting. Delightful thoughts aren’t they? I started to hate how I looked in photos, which was bad since there are a lot of photos.
Now though, I am reminding myself I am human. I am finding clothing that I feel happy and comfortable in as well as wearing clothes I look good in. So far it has been tough but, fighting against myself and proving to myself has so far been really worth it and I look forward to seeing what the year ahead brings for me.