We’re six months into this project and already I’m seeing a real change. I’m starting to take more pride in my appearance–learning to put on makeup, finally doing my hair (more or less; still learning) and updating my wardrobe.
I had one of those backdoor brag moments the other day; I was at Target and realized I could no longer fit in a Jr. Size 1. Totally bummed. I’m a Jr. size 3 now, and at first, I panicked, because I want to be thin and pretty. Then I tried on my size 3 shorts, and I felt GREAT. I felt voluptuous. I felt comfortable. I felt really beautiful.
But most importantly, I’m learning the importance of making your partner feel special. And that’s not just Ian, it’s Mike, it’s Matthew, it’s my sisters, it’s my father-in-law. Everyone in every relationship likes to feel like their needs are being met. I sure do.
I don’t think this a gendered issue and I’m not trying to make it one. I’m not saying that women belong in the kitchen. I’m saying people belong in the kitchen because food is awesome. I’m learning that asking an opinion about a haircut or an outfit is important because we all crave feedback and validation. I would want any of my friends–male or female–to say “Eh, that doesn’t really work for you” when I ask how a dress looks. And I’m learning the value of choice. Now if I want to put on leggings and my SVU hoodie and watch MST3K, I’m doing it because that’s what I feel like doing, not because it’s a lazy, default position, and that makes the experience something to look forward to.
And I’m revisiting things I used to love–wearing contact lenses, high heels, dark nail polish. I’m reminding myself that I am worth the time and the energy these things require. I like the way I look in my Betsey Johnson booties. I like giving myself mani-pedis. I like putting effort and energy into my outfits because just throwing on on something slopping makes me feel sloppy, and I don’t perform well unless I feel my best. When I’m in my office in a pencil skirt and heels, I feel like working. When I’m wearing my apron, I feel like cooking. Maybe it’s my theater background. Maybe it’s because I inherited my grandmother Cora’s vanity. But whatever it is, I’m really feel like this project is teaching me.
We’ve come this far together–and I can’t wait to keep at it.