Tell us all about your best confidence outfit. Don’t leave out the shoes or the perfect accessories.
My life has changed so much over the past few years that this seemingly innocuous question gives me great pause. I’ve regained all the weight I lost when I was critically ill. I work from home so I never buy clothes – I think my last few purchases have been fundraiser tee shirts.
So the answer for me is mostly my favorite pair of Levi’s and one of a certain set of sweatshirts. Hmmm. The shoes? Well, either sneakers or Doc Martens. I’m not even sure I wore my brown Doc Martens this winter. I do have a pair of cool black boots that I wore to the few “fancy” events I attended this winter.
I suppose clothing is part of the “fake it til you make it” approach to confidence – and it certainly seems to occupy a lot of conversation space in social media. And one could infer that my default to Levi’s and sweatshirts is about hiding my shape, my body, my lack of confidence. But really it is because Ledcat bought those jeans for me and they are super comfortable and even have useful pockets unlike most women’s jeans.
I like pockets because they give me somewhere to hide my hands when they tremor. Sometimes, I need to literally wrap them in some sort of fabric to ease the discomfort so a large pocket in a sweatshirt is ideal. I also like to keep certain items really close at hand versus putting into my huge bag of necessity (ie purse) where things can get lost very easily no matter how many small zippered bags I use to organize.
So the blue sweater with the somewhat useful pockets over a pair of black leggings? That’s a winner now no matter how I think it makes my shoulders look or how the waistline falls. The well cut black skirt with the red shirt neither of which has pockets? Not so much.
I’ve noticed that when friends lose a lot of weight or go through some other significant change, there inevitably comes some ongoing dialogue about wanting to “learn” how to dress and accessorize and so forth. When I was 30, I would have agreed with them. Everyone wants a fashionista godmother to swoop in and teach us all of the things – like a movie montage. But that doesn’t happen. Most fashionista godmothers now have blogs which requires us to read and learn and think and develop our own style. And that’s how it should be. I actually read several fashion blogs and find them to be quite engaging & well-written.
I’ve redefined confidence clothing. It isn’t so much what it shows off as how it bolsters my ability to function in any given setting. I don’t take functioning for granted and that self-honesty gives me far more confidence than any accessory.
So this week and weekend, I’ll be sorting through clothing to donate to Goodwill Industries. Not only can they resell items to fund their massive good works, but they recycle textiles so I can donate clothing that is no longer useful and even old shoes (even mismatched shoes.)
I’ll be ending most posts with a gentle reminder that we need donations to support the launch of Cathy’s Closet – it is a good fit with this topic – how can you be confident if you don’t have access to soap, toothpaste or pads? If you are nodding your head slowly in agreement with that statement, can you please make a $10 donation to ensure someone else doesn’t face that dilemma?