I always say this, I always preach this. Today I didn’t follow it.
Today I took off work to get some really thrilling things accomplished (taxes, take the car in to be repaired, get spring clothes out of the attic). After dropping off my car, my husband and I (and Emerson) stop by the neighborhood barber shop so Mr. Allie can get a trim.
I only thought we were going to drop off the car and head home, so I threw on a navy jersey sleeveless dress, some flip flops and put my hair (that was in much need of a shower) into a ponytail. Silver hoops and cuff bracelet are standard; I did take a moment to put on some tinted moisturizer and mascara but it was hardly visible.
We walk in, my husband sits down next to this man in a green shirt and says, “Hello friend.” The man looks up… and well it’s not my ex but it is a very old friend. A friend I considered my best (or one of my best) friend for the majority of my childhood and adolescence. He was on of the first boys I ever kissed. He taught me how to drive stick. We went to college together. I was a bridesmaid in his wedding. When my father passed away, he was the rock I needed to get through the situation.
We lost touch about a decade ago. I never really knew why. And now I see him and I am in a pilled, faded dress that could pass for a shortie nightgown or beach coverup and a greasy ponytail.
While my husband got his hair cut, we went outside with my daughter to catch up. We discussed how we lost touch and what is new in the past decade plus. I joked to him about my mantra about never leaving the house looking the way I did; he mentioned one time he ran to the gas station in an old tee shirt, khakis and black Crocs and bumped into an ex he hadn’t seen in over a decade so he could laugh with me. But I still wish I had taken the time this morning to pull myself together. It will take additional meetings to properly let this person know the person I have become in the past 12 years – a person I think is pretty fantastic.
Your wardrobe is your armor – a tool to help you feel confident, feel beautiful, feel strong. Caring about your appearance isn’t superficial or selfish; caring about your appearance is just as important as caring about your health or your education. Your appearance is the first thing that people see – it is your first voice to the world. The way you dress should properly represent the amazing person you are. Today I did myself a disservice by dressing in a manner that did not properly represent.
So yes, do dress in a manner that will not embarrass you if you bump into an old flame… but dress in a manner that properly represents your fabulous self. This doesn’t mean designer labels or trendy styles, it means shopping with care and thought. Slowly building a wardrobe of items that you love and love you in return. Buy as you would for your home, your child, your job. Buy things slowly, searching for the best price, value, quality. Think about what is already at home, and how this item will work with that collection. And always have those last minute outfits at the ready for when you do need to get gas, drop off the car, buy a quart of milk. For you never know who you may bump into.