Illustration: The Magazine of Yoga
Observations of a Fifty Something Housewife
My psychology of style: I have enough insecurities –
I don’t need any trouble from my clothes.
BY MAGAZINE COLUMNIST MORA HECHT
June, July and August are “busting out all over” and I could use a new swimsuit, among other items of apparel; anything to keep me cool and carefree during the sweltering dog days of summer.
When I was younger, much, much younger, and sporting a tummy was cute, and hips and thighs were not cause for concern, I loved nothing more than wearing my first two-piece of the season. I spent glorious days at the neighborhood pool and my mother would often coax me out of the water with a vending machine treat. The “thud” as the cellophane wrapped package of vanilla crème filled wafers hit the bottom elicited loud squeals of delight!
All these years later, and I can still recall the sugary intoxicating aroma, and the paradox of this calorie dense sweet that may have made future shopping expeditions challenging.
Mirror, Mirror, on the Wall
Shopping for a one-piece or two is arduous enough without added delusions that seduce us in to believing we are longer, leaner and tanner than we really are. I am not sure if it is the lighting or mirrors, but when I slip on a new purchase once home the response often heard reverberating throughout the house is “What the hell is this?”
I never look quite as thin and bronzed as I do in the store. So, if there is some secret known only by the sales attendants, some chicanery with smoke and mirrors, shame on them. There is no need to set us up for unrealistic expectations. We can love ourselves just as we are.
Four Feasts and a Wedding!
I just returned from an out of town wedding. This involved a lot of commiserating among friends prior to the trip regarding the wardrobe needed for such a celebration. There was a pre-wedding dinner, a rehearsal dinner, the wedding, and brunch the next day.
“My dress is too tight,” my friend revealed to me as we discussed packing for this event. “Me too, I’m having mine let out.”
We were both hoping to wear the gowns from our daughters’ weddings, that is, until I wore mine for its second outing.
Waiting to Inhale
Something was amiss as I settled myself into our car a few months back.
“I can’t breathe,” I gasped to my husband and children. “No, really, I’m not kidding.”
I pulled at the sides, the boning pressing into my ribcage. My enthusiastic anticipation regarding this affair turned to panic. There was no time to change, and I don’t even know what I would have changed into. Someone thinner, perhaps?
I admit to weighing three pounds more than at my daughter’s wedding. Honestly, how could the size of a small Cornish game hen make such a difference? I dry cleaned my gown, perhaps it shrunk. Or, could it be the much rumored “middle age spread?” For the love of God, it’s not enough we have to exercise more and eat less?
Either way, I was stuck and miserable. I went into the ladies room multiple times throughout the evening, my daughter, sympathetically unzipping me for a welcomed breath of air.
I have enough insecurities; I don’t need any trouble from my clothes. Note to self: Always try your garment on before a special occasion arises.
The Psychology of Style
Thankfully my gown was successfully let out for this third twirl on the dance floor, but it got me to thinking about our relationship to clothes and how we dress.
Clothing is my armor and what I wear is not only an expression of myself, but of comforting serenity. I can create an entire scenario in my head with the mere purchase of a hat or scarf; transporting me to wherever my imagination takes me. And I would be perfectly happy to wear my yoga clothes most days, which I often do!
So, as I venture out shopping, with the wind at my back, no amount of hocus-pocus, no sleight of hand, will deter me from embracing my true self, flaws and all.
Read Mora all month long, blogging with her pearls on, at Is Anybody Else Hot?
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© 2011, The Magazine of Yoga, LLC.