It was a beautiful day. The leaves had turned brown and crisp and lay scattered around the campus as if they were rose pedals leading a path to something special. I don't walk in a straight line, because I can't resist the urge to step on every single one that comes near my feet. That *crunch* just makes me feel good. Being so preoccupied in my stomping game on my way home from class, I almost don't feel my cell phone buzzing. Of course I look to see who is calling before I answer.
My hearts pauses, and I stop dead in my tracks. It is him.
I answer it as casually as I can, "Hello." (Okay, doing good so far.) I continue walking.
"Hey, what are you doing RIGHT now?"
I am instantly worried. It is a long story as to why I wasn't looking that put together on our first date and we had only been on two. Which means he would have only seen me at my best on one date if he is wanting to hang out, right now.
My hair is in a messy bun (emphasis on the messy), no make up (which means I look dead - blonde eyelashes people) I look down, sweatpants, a sweatshirt and Uggs. Lovely. I look like crap and more importantly I FEEL like crap. Not how you want to have a spontaneous date with a boy you are interested in impressing.
"Um, I am just getting out of class."
"Great. Are you done for the day?"
YES! I think to myself. Do I tell him that though? I so badly want to hang out with him, but I look like I rolled out of bed.... wait, I DID just roll out of bed.
I stop arguing with my inner self and say "Sure!" I am not about to let my lack of self care stop me from hanging out with this guy again. I want to see him too much.
"Okay, awesome. Want to meet me at the Burger place right by President's circle?"
I just happen to be standing on a pile of crunched up broken leaves at President's circle right at that moment. Too perfect?
"Yeah, in fact I am there right now."
"Kay, see you soon!"
Along with the excitement comes a sharp feeling of anxiety as I scourge though my purse for anything... a lip gloss, a comb, anything to help this situation. I make a sad attempt at trying to give my appearance, and attitude a boost.
♥ ♥ ♥ ♥ ♥
Now don't worry people. It was a great third date, despite my appearance. Turns out Trevor loves me with or without make up, and in sweat pants as much as he does in a cute outfit planned out with thought.
The real key to this story is HOW I FELT. I am not trying to say that you have to look a certain way to feel beautiful or good, but how we take care of ourselves (inside and out) plays a big role in how we feel about ourselves and in general.
If I had woken up 15 minutes earlier that day, did my hair, put on an outfit I wouldn't be embarrassed to run into a hot guy I had just started dating, I wouldn't have been nearly as panicky about meeting him for an out of the blue unplanned date. I would have been a lot more comfortable going into it, a lot more confident.
You think I would have learned after that experience, but this is something I still need to work on. I seem to only ever get dressed up for "something" and not just for me. In high school I used to have fun getting dressed every morning and going to school. I did it for me. Then when I went to college where I didn't know anyone, and my schedule got crazy, I just slipped into the comfortable routine of sweat pants and Uggs. I would only get excited and dressed up for the weekend or a date. While there is a time and place to just be casual and comfortable, I have noticed this trend has gone on for too long.
If you ran into me on a week day, lets say at the grocery store, the chances are you would spot me NOT in my favorite outfit, my hair a day or two dirty, and my face with little to no make up on. You see, I work full time, and before that I was in school full time and working part-time... which means, I value my sleep &my time. So instead of waking up that extra 15 minutes to make sure I look my best for the day... I just dig myself deeper into my sheets and close my eyes. It has me asking myself, don't I value my appearance, and how I feel too?
I find myself rationalizing this behavior, and I think to myself "Well I am just going to go to the gym after work, so whats the point?" Well the point is Alycia, you can't not, not get ready for the day every day because you are going to work out after! - Yes, I talk to myself. Kind of like this entire blog post.
When I meet up with friends, or go out somewhere, that is when I tend to get dressed up and put some effort into my look. Or when I was doing the 30 for 30 challenge, which I couldn't even stick to past day 18! Problem is, I really do feel like how you present yourself in result determines how you feel that day... and to be honest, I am tired of feeling "thrown together at the last minute." If I can't get a hold of this now, it will only get worse when I have kids, which means even LESS sleep! HA!
I want to make a change. I want to get dressed and ready for my day with a purpose. I want to look and feel my best every day, not just when I am meeting up with a friend, or going somewhere. I want to do it for me.
But how to get started with that? I am sure it will be a process... I mean I am going on twenty three years here of just rolling out of bed and starting my day. Ask anyone who went to college with me... I think I wore a sweatshirt, sweat pants and uggs pretty much every day... and a messy bun (¬ the cute top knot kind all you lovely bloggers have).
I might just have to get myself out of bed and plan out what I am going to wear... something foreign called effort? I also want to post one to two fashion posts a week as a way to try and keep the goal going... I found that the 30 for 30 did help me get more creative with my closet and got me a little more dressed up then I normally would on a day to day basis. And having to document it also made me more accountable to it. I want to be accountable to my goals, and blogging about it is one way to help with that.
Lets be honest here, we are real women, with real lives... that are BUSY, and sometimes getting totally put together for our day isn't a priority, or it takes too much time. But I have found that we make time for what is important to us... and I am tired of being that frumpy girl in an office at the age of twenty three... so I making a change. Does anyone else ever feel like this? Please share your thoughts.
Never again do I want such an exciting moment, like Trevor calling me for a spontaneous date in our early courtship, to be tainted by my feelings of anxiety of not taking some effort into how I feel and look. As women, we deserve to take some time out for ourselves.
I truly believe that how we present ourselves can strongly impact how we feel. In an attempt to not let the daily stresses of life keep me in sweat pants and ugly moods, I am documenting what I have been wearing to make sure I am starting each day with a purpose. I feel my best when I have taken some time out for me, to take care of myself... because your never truly dressed without a smile.