Funny how our wardrobes somewhat dictate or openly invite the world into our personalities-we show them very intimate facts about us simply by what we wear. Who I used to be vs now are as polar as opposites can be. People like me wear elastic waist to avoid buttons. Panties 2-3 sizes to big so as little material as possible touches us-for me my lower spine. Clothing becomes something to tolerate, not express. For a fashion lover like I am it absolutely sucks. I had to go through my wardrobe today to keep, donate, or throw away. Several things had literally worn out-evidently I worked & played really hard ;). Seeing my grad school/Little Rock years gutted me. Amazing how an item of clothing can hold more memories than a camera. Some items I had to keep, way to old & small, but to put in the back of a drawer to pull out when I need to remember. Here is who I used to be, that few of you were able to meet.
My absolute ultimate me item. A very thin long sleeved patchwork shirt-ripped, sewn & repaired beyond repair, & scented with Brazil nights on the beach, teaching days at UALR, & my old tangerine perfume. I so gently put one hand & arm through a sleeve, just to feel the old me again.
The simple denim shirt/jacket combo. The pockets were over the chest, & great to stick money, my ID, phone, & lip balm in...look closely at the bottom right of the pocket & you'll see the cylinder shape of a Burt's Bees lip balm. I wore this as a shirt or jacket at least 3-5 times a week.
My wardrobe had loads of shirts & jeans paired with blazers & tennis shoes. The blazer dressed it up for teaching, & the shoes for walking all around that seemingly huge campus. I loved mixing stripes, so I often wore pinstriped blazers with totally random striped tees.
My favorite statement...'your future ex-girlfriend'. The dating scene post divorce, being overseas for a decade, etc was a new world. I was shocked people still stood you up, broke up through emails, & other fun dating no-nos. I quickly developed a cynical outlook but deep down was the 12 year old asking 'why didn't he like me?'. This shirt at least made me feel that to those possible idiots I wasn't as sweet as I seemed in that aspect.
I don't know who I am now. My wardrobe reflects so little of my true nature, & that is one of the unspoken losses invisible illness people often face...so the next time you see someone like me, remember them for who they used to be able to show.