"Well," I say to my husband, throwing a few shopping bags on the floor, "I have a shape, just not the shape I'd like to have."
He raises his eyebrow at me; we're going to a charity dinner tonight, virtually the only annual occasion where we have to get sort of dressed up, and I spent a stressful afternoon shopping for something to wear.
"I'm going a little daring tonight," I say, and he raises the other eyebrow.
I took Greta with me as a fashion consultant, trying on and discarding countless dresses, flowing skirts and ruffled shirts (when did ruffles come in again? And, for God's sake, WHY?) until settling on two options: the Safe Bet and the Boob Shirt. I still don't know if I'm going to be courageous enough to wear Option #2.
I used to be proud of my, er, top section, considering it one of my best features. But two kids, turning 40 and gravity, and, well, you get the idea. I have spent the past four wintry months in stretchy black pants and an oversized polar fleece pullover. I don't think I have even seen my arms in months.
This particular event can be tough for me, drinking wise (or not-drinking wise, as the case may be). We've been going for over five years, and I used to look forward to it, because of the emphasis on drinking. My first year sober I skipped it; I wasn't ready. Last year I went, but felt itchy and frumpy all night. I'm looking for a change.
I step out of the shower, wrap up in a towel, and glare at the two outfits lying on my bed. With a sigh, I reach for the Safe Bet and put it on. It doesn't look bad. It doesn't look like anything, really. I did find a pair of sexy black shoes on sale, and some form fitting black pants that fit me well. But when I wrap the cape-like shawl around my shoulders, I look like a woman who is hiding. I don't want to hide anymore.
On my spiky heels I tower at just over six feet tall. I picture all the curvy, voluptuous women I've seen who don't hide their femininity. Nothing makes a woman look frumpier than when she is ashamed of her own shape.
Tonight, I'm gonna bring it, I think.
And I do.
P.S. - Sorry about the bad picture quality, and the lack of a smile. I'm not coordinated enough to hold a camera and smile and take a self-portrait at the same time. I had to re-create the outfit, with nobody else available to take the pic. But at least you get the idea.... :)