It would appear that last year I was still in denial. I apparently was still clinging to the hope that the 25-Year-Old-Body Fairy was going to visit at any moment, or that the world of physics could reverse the effects of gravity, or that it made sense to hold on to some item for over 20 years “just in case.”
Those are the only reasons I can come up with for finding some of the special pieces I’ve come across while digging out my summer clothing.
As I pack away my heavy, bulky winter clothes and excitedly look toward lighter wear (ignoring the fact it is currently 40 degrees and raining outside), I have decided to take a harder look at what I have, and what truly belongs in the donation pile.
I have to release my grip on denial and accept that I am a mature woman. I remember my mom had certain “rules” about how mature women should look and dress. The one rule of hers I still don’t agree with was that no woman over 40 should have long hair. I never quite understood that one.
However, I have started my own rules, or shall I say have started my list of the Must Let Go’s:
- Spaghetti-strap Tank Tops with Built In Bra’s. Even if I could still fit the girls into
these tops, the allure is somehow lost between gravitational pull, side-boob-bulge, and back fat. Let’s go with the looser, larger strap tanks, please.
- Bedazzled or ruffled skirts that fall more than an inch above the knee. No one wants to see spider veins, cellulite or knee wrinkles trying to be young underneath sparkles and fluff.
- Cropped Tops. I am short waisted, so crop tops used to be the perfect option when I wanted a shirt to end at my waist. There comes a time when no woman wants a shirt to end at her waist. It needs to extend to give the allusion of a waist, while still hiding a muffin tops.
- Shorts with 2” or less of an inseam. See reason #2, but add in more cellulite.
- Ties at the Waist. Let’s face it, after a certain age, our waists are no longer where they used to be, nor the size and shape they used to be. And the high-waisted under-boob tie is even worse of a guessing game. The end result looks much like a rubber band around a hardboiled egg. Not good. And trust me, adding ruffles or poofy short sleeves is not going to help.
All of these items aside, I do believe it is vitally important to not totally give up yet. In some moment of weakness or depression in the past year or so, I purchased the dreaded Mom Capri Khaki’s. You know what I’m talking about, the man-cut tops with side pockets, sitting above the waist, straight and boring pant legs, in a blah color, landing at a weird pseudo-capri length. Please, no offense to any of you out there who have these in your closet. I get it, they are easy. They are comfortable. But fess up, there is nothing attractive about these pants. They scream “I’ve given up and have become my mother.” Don’t do it. As difficult as it is, we must find that balance between “my daughter should wear this” and “I give up.” I have now placed those Khaki’s in the Must Go pile. And it made me feel marginally better.
We have to be realistic about the other type of seasonal clothing as well. While putting away my winter gear, I came across a box of sweaters. None of which I’ve worn in at least 3 years. Really, can ANY woman who’s at any stage of menopause, even LOOK at this sweater without breaking out in a hot flash?? Buh-bye.
I realize that some of you mature women out there have been nauseatingly successful in keeping the body of your youth, or at least close to it, OR are braver and more daring than I. Just the other day, a woman who was working at a local gift shop and assisting in cashing me out, was wearing leopard print leggings, a black cropped, bedazzled top, and heels. I guesstimated her as being approximately 10 years older than me. You know what? Bravo to her. I could never pull off that level of confidence, but if she felt good reaching into her “younger me” section of her closet, then go for it.
In the meantime, I will continue to clean out. And I will take heart in the knowledge that some other woman, somewhere, likely much younger and perkier than I, will get some use out of my “Must Go’s”, and will look amazing in them. And she probably needs fuzzy warm sweaters too.
While she’s getting her gently-used bargains, I will resume my quest for the perfect Facing Reality Yet Still Funky wardrobe additions. I’m sure they are out there…Right next to the Still Sexy But Not So High and Comfortable shoes.