- A girl or woman regarded as dull, plain, or unfashionable.
- A person regarded as colorless and primly sedate.
One of my BFFs and I are just a few months away from a milestone birthday. Even though we are both thankful to be alive and healthy, we are admittedly depressed about reaching this particular milestone so soon. We’d be much rather that it be farther out on the horizon – by a few years at least.
But alas, we can not control time, and so we must face the inevitable. She and I got together the other evening, and over drinks and half-priced apps, we got caught up on work and family…. then moved into our session of commiseration. We both admitted to each other that as the past year or so has progressed, we have begun to feel kind of blah, kind of boring – basically, we feel frumpy. We analyzed this together, and came up with two causes of this frumpiness. One is due to our current activities and life experiences. The other, (naturally because we are real women) is our own opinion of our bodies and style.
We decided that what we needed was to start our own Campaign: Stop the Frump. In the coming months, we will come up with ideas to move away from our own frumpiness and begin to feel excited and better about ourselves like we did when we were….well, younger. We started with brainstorming non-frump activities. Within minutes, my girlfriend had one in mind, and with steely determination and yearning in her eyes, she proclaimed that we need to go see a concert. Not a reunion concert of old rockers who are still trying to reach the high notes after 40 years, and not a concert of an ABBA Tribute Band. No, she said, a real concert, of modern, contemporary music. Maybe Maroon5, or Neon Trees…. We would purposefully shop for funky trendy outfits to wear, and we’d feel hip and decidedly non-frumpy. Bravo, great idea. This goal went on the Campaign must-do list. We immediately reached out to another BFF to invite her to join the Campaign, and as expected, she was all for it.
Today our new Campaign member texted me to say that she was once again doing her usual Real Woman weekend errands, making the circuit of Target and the grocery store. She was wishing she was someplace fabulous and fun, instead she was buying kitchen utensils, acne cream for her kids, and her big excitement was picking out a new shampoo. Yup, necessary, boring….frumpy. I told her another Campaign pledge was to put some spice back into our shopping experiences.
For example…. I have always been a fan of Victoria’s Secret’s undergarments. For years, VS was my go-to store when I needed new bra’s and panties. Going to VS is an experience of its own. You can’t help but feel girly and alittle sexy just walking in there…. There are the adorable items that look great only on Barbie dolls, there are great patterns and styles, and even lotions and perfumes to try. Now, granted, in recent years, I was having to hunt a bit harder to find the back corner where Basic Bras for Mature Bodies were hiding, but it was still a good experience.
Contrast that to yesterday…. I took my son to a department store, left him off to look for school clothes in the men’s department, while I did a 10-minute speed run through the lingerie department trying to find a few sale items that would fit fairly well – which was tough to determine when trying them on during hot flashes in a crowded and noisy fitting room. Nope, not the same experience at all. Frumpy. Mental note: make time to go visit my old friends at VS.
And that brings us to our other Stop the Frump challenge. Our body images. My husband, God Bless him, is prolific with compliments for me. I am lucky that he tells me quite regularly that he loves my body, thinks I’m beautiful just the way I am. To any men reading this, do not stop saying these things to us. It is exactly what we need to hear, even if we pretend it isn’t. But sometimes we RW’s need to commiserate with a BFF about all that is wrong with our bodies. There are times when we don’t want to hear “oh, you are great the way you are”….. instead we want to compare frustrations over muffin tops that won’t go away, pants or skirts that no longer fit, complain about slowing metabolisms, or ask each other where the HECK that back fat came from…. It is that old adage that misery loves company.
As my BFF and I wallowed our way through our appetizers, we empathized about not just our bodies – but the fashion and style issues that come with the territory. As our bodies have changed, clothing that looked great as recently as two years ago now looks pretty awful. Body parts move south, awkward bulges appear, and we try to find ways to adapt. We stop tucking in. We stop trying to fit into skinny jeans. And soon we realize that the only styles that look good on us are flowy and patterned. But we are weary of flowy and patterned. We have younger co-workers who look cute and trendy in fun styles, while we look – you guessed it – frumpy.
As Campaign activists, we have determined that the Retail world is missing the mark – we need new styles created for the “mature and menopausal” that fall somewhere between the dreaded Mom Wear, and the painful Trying Too Hard looks. And we vowed that at any time, if any of us find something great that fits that need, we immediately contact the others with location and price. There is hope – the fine folks at Warner’s have a line of bra’s that promise to “put the girls back where they belong.” Figures they’d understand, Warner’s has been around since our Grandmothers wore their products.
So to any of you, dear readers, who are feeling a bit dull, please join our Campaign. And share any ideas you have to Stop the Frump. As for me and my BFF who texted me from the grocery store? This Friday we are taking the afternoon off to go get a massage at a day spa, then going to see a Comedienne at a local Casino (with a two-drink minimum, woo-hoo!). It’s not as wild as jetting off to the Carribbean for a Club Med vacation, but hey – we are Real Women. And this is the kind of real pick-me-up we need.
Heck, I might even be a rebel and wear black and tuck in.