Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Vanity



This is an actual photo of me. This is not a costume. This is really what I looked like that day.

Something has happened to my sense of vanity - it seems to have disappeared, and I'm not sure where it went. There was a time, not so long ago, when I would have been appalled at the thought of having my picture taken looking like this. Now I think it's kind of funny. (I especially like the hat, and think it adds a certain je ne sais quoi to the whole ensemble.)

How did this happen?

Take showers, for example. Having a shower used to be the first thing I would do when I got up in the morning. Now that would be a waste of time, since my mornings are usually spent in dirty, sweaty work. But that leads to scheduling issues. Suppose Kim and I have spent the morning wrestling a countertop and vanity out of a bathroom, destroying much of the drywall in the process, and then decide to go to the dump. Would I bother getting out of my dirty clothes and having a shower, just to go to the dump? Of course not. So we go to the dump, and get a little dirtier and sweatier hauling all the debris out of the truck. But that's no problem, because everyone at the dump looks dirty and sweaty.

Then it's lunch time and we decide to go to Tim's for a bowl of soup, but we're all covered in drywall dust. Do we go all the way home, have a shower and change, and then drive all the way back into town for lunch? Of course not. So we go to Tim's, as we are (and we don't stand out too much - Duncan is a blue collar town after all), and somehow I have found myself in public in a state I never imagined allowing myself to be seen in. Not only that, but when we pass the grocery store I remember we're out of cream and I actually go into the store to fetch it.

It's kind of liberating, in the same way as my decision a few years ago not to wear high heels anymore. Liberating in that it priorizes function over form. Inside over outside. Sense of self over the opinion of others. I'm pretty happy about that.

But I don't want you to think I don't have showers anymore. I do. Regularly. Really.

5 comments:

~Kim~ said...

I love the "free feeling" I get walking our dogs around our property in the morning wearing my faded coat and pj's without the worry of seeing anyone, then later going to the store in my barn shoes, old denim and no one even notices--I totally agree, it's all kind of liberating and has gotten to be "so me!"

Thank-you for your kind thoughts on the loss of our dog, Cowboy. You wondered what the "Rainbow Bridge" was, here's a link...
http://www.petloss.com/poems/maingrp/rainbowb.htm

Enjoy your Thursday!

jeanives said...

You are gorgeous no matter what you wear or how dirty you might be.

Paula said...

Loved this post, and the pic (especially the hat!)! Years ago I helped a buddy of mine redo her first house, and after hours of pulling nasty old carpet out or painting or something, we'd be covered in something including sweat, and we'd still go over to Harpoon Louie's for lunch or dinner, and did not care that we looked a sight with no makeup and a layer of grime on us. Sometimes, we stuck around for another beer and a couple rounds of pool, too!

On the subject of personal appearance and hygiene, Steve and I have taken to bathing every other day, unless something's going on that requires grooming, or I just plain stink from working outside. He works from home- I'm unemployed- well, not gainfully employed. I'm certainly employed all over the yard. The best thing that makes this work is my super-short haircut that I can splash water on and run a comb through, and then I feel presentable enough for Home Depot. A common question around the house is, is today a bath day?

But I understand your amusement at this point in your life, because there was a time in my life when I wouldn't be caught dead outside the house without at least a coat of mascara on, much less dirty hair. Now I don't particularly care. I just hope that if I've hit this stage of my life at this stage of my life, that I don't turn into one of those sour-smelling old ladies who stink because they no longer bathe. Not likely, though- I have an acute sense of smell, and when I can't stand myself, I can't stand myself!!

Toni aka irishlas said...

I love your hat!
You know, it's about time us gals feel guilt free about our appearances. Do you think it's something that comes with age?
Embrace the crone in all of us.

I'm the same way as you - I think it's called being practical.
Now, gimme that hat!

amothersheartinwords said...

I LOVE your writing!

When we first moved to NC from Southern Cal, we bought this 120 year old farmhouse in early March of 2007.

Therein started the shower/hygiene/cleanest-dirty-clothes-you-have-worn-all-week part of my life.

I didn't shower for seven days in a row.

When the water pipes freeze in the winter? no big deal


we like to say around here with no shame at all, "I take my showers regularly! Once a month whether I need it or not!".

I won't claim to shower regularly - just not as often as I used to!!

Life is good, puffy vests, irregular showers and "farm clothes" and all!

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...