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Sneaking by to post

Thank you all for being so kind about my new pattern. I have a lot to learn, and I appreciate the great suggestions and tweaks. It's not too late if you have suggestions - I'd love to hear them.

I've been wrestling with a cold since late Saturday and I think I've finally beaten it into submission with Airborne, Sudafed and ibuprofen. However, the last time I checked, I can't call in sick to my day job. People around here still expect to eat, wear clean clothes and get to school on time. But my "bosses" are cute and entertaining, so I can't complain. My cold has made me melancholy and nostalgic though -- I miss my sister. I miss ALL of my sisters but especially my younger sister. I'm going to share some OLD photos of us -- the rest of the post might bore you, but at least the photos might distract you:

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Karamursel AFB, Turkey, 1969

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I kept that pink bear till I was 22

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This photo was taken in 1971 - the year we moved to Oklahoma

The main reason for my sneaking by to post is my wanting to talk about some of the thoughts I've had due to the ongoing dialogue at Hannabirke. I'm linking to the entire blog because I think I'd do a disservice by just linking to bits and pieces. In a nutshell, it's caused me to think more about my role and my clothing and how my clothing reflects my life. Since I became a (mostly) stay-at-home mom in 1997, I've relished my freedom from the tyranny of pantyhose and fully embraced my daily uniform - jeans and knits. I no longer need to dress to impress (professionally) but am focused more on function, utility, comfort. But I've decided to kick it up a notch and get rid of anything that doesn't reflect my style or color preferences. There are "reasons" but it's not all that deep to anybody but me -- and it relates to my desire to look closer to my chronological age. I'm thankful for my genes and my genetic predisposition to having good skin and hair and lack of "smile" lines, but I don't know that my choice to dress so much younger than I am is making me feel the way I want to feel. The changes are likely to be imperceptible, but when I walk into a room, I want to feel a certain way and carry myself a certain way . . . for ME. And although I can't control the impressions people form when they meet me, I can control some of my own details and choices. And I'm not fishing for compliments or feedback, but I am writing things down so that I follow through. It's always been my choice NOT to wear "mom" jeans and not to be "frumpy." I do those things for myself out of self-respect, and you wouldn't believe the things people feel that they can say to somebody who takes these pains -- they treat me as if I'm forming a revolt against womankind's right to be frumpy. I am not. It's my own choice and my own decision -- one that I made many years before it was even close to being an issue. NO FRUMP. EVER. My choices don't mean I am judging you. I would put on make-up every day whether I see anybody outside my home or not.

So if you've read this far, you're probably wondering how I extrapolated all that from somebody's blog entries and why I suddenly felt compelled to ruthlessly rid myself of half the clothes in my closet (already a sparse collection) -- it was because I couldn't move forward until I released what I didn't want. You've heard "don't think about what you don't want," right? There were several things hanging in my closet that were still making me think of what I didn't want. Basically, there are emotions attached to some of my things and until those things are released, I can't release the emotions.

It's also changed my mind about things I "thought" I wanted to knit. All of this is related, believe it or not. That's why I'm releasing stash - so I can move forward. And nothing is escaping this filtering process right now -- the knitting, the projects, the way I spend my time. The blog is here to stay, however -- I love writing here; it's not going anywhere and there will be no sudden disappearance. Thank you for hanging in there with me, for reading me, commenting and sharing.

Comments

janet this is a lovely post. i love all of it. the photos are interesting and feel so sisterly (in a good way). and the text is also very interesting (and not just because you give me a shout out).

i'm a huge believer in dressing for ourselves - for how we want to feel and experience ourselves. i'm also a huge believer in getting rid of the clothes and other things that don't express us. and i do think the clearing out "makes room" for new things and experiences in our lives.

looking forward to hearing/seeing more about how this clearing out changes things for you.

and glad you're not giving your blog the heave ho. :)

I hope you feel so much better soon!

Change is inevitable, but I am so glad you are here to stay! I am here to stay as well! So glad we were able to e-meet each other :o)

Janet, I so enjoyed the old photos of you and your sister. I don't know if it's the age, but I recently scanned all the old photos and felt very nostalgic remembering all those times, awash with so many different emotions.

I also swore "no frump" and yet, somehow I feel very frumpy lately. Maybe it's more about my attitude than anything else. But I feel a change coming soon.

Thanks for such a poignant post. It's nice to have a departure from the knitting once in awhile.

yep, love the post....love the "sister love" photos......
love that your children are your bosses! i am going to start to use that! :)

Janet, I know you didn't write this post for any reason other than honesty and being true to yourself. I also know that it's all about choice and having the right to make that choice. Further, I don't for one moment doubt the nasty things you would've heard along the way - women can be incredibly nasty to one another, but let's leave that for another post, shall we?

Janet, you and your sister looked so cute in these photos. I enjoyed reading this post because I do think about how I dress too. I dress at work to 'blend in' because I do not want to stand out for my dressing. If I could, I would love to be dressed like someone from the pages of the Anthropologie catalogue, so carefree. By the way, my mum dresses up and puts on make up everyday, even if it is just to walk to the nearby market. So just continue dressing for yourself, it's great to have the freedom to do so.

I hope the cold gets better soon, I am the same today, tissues and remedies surround me! I liked reading your post. I would love to have a total sort out, my wardrobe isn't me anymore, I will when finances allow!!

So funny you should write about this today! I'm in the same boat. In fact, it's 7am and I've already browsed the Gap and Old Navy websites, since I plan to do some shopping today. As well as some closet purging.

I *need* to dress the way I want to dress. Three things have pushed me into my thinking today: the divorce, The Divorce Diet (nothing fits), and the cooler weather. I'm not really going after an image change, but I do want to dress more like I feel inside.

Like you, I'm going to release what doesn't make me feel good, and move forward. Good luck to both of us. :)

Love the pictures and the thoughts. :)

Good for you! It is always healthy to do things for yourself. I discovered that smack dab in the middle of my now defunk 17 year marriage. I no longer dress for anyone but myself. I do try to make it age appropriate, but I will not look like an old woman, at least not now.

The hard part is letting go but once you get over that, the rest is easy.

I love the pictures. I might have to do some sentimental thing soon to. I miss my sister and both of my brothers.

Good Luck!

Good post, and good food for thought. I've let my weight gain over the past two years decide how I dress, to the point of wearing the same things over and over and over, ad naseum. I'm wearing a new shirt today that's actually flattering (weight gain and all) and I FEEL so much better! I'm going to toss the idea that I can't buy new clothes until I lose weight and go with the "look good, feel good" philosophy.

How exciting!!!

Have you been watching "What Not to Wear" lately by any chance? That show ALWAYS makes me want to throw out my entire closet and start anew. But, I never do. So I'm *excited* to see you're actually going through with it.
p.s. Emergen-C is great for colds! Feel better soon!

Good post, Janet. I love the pictures of you and your sister, but you know I love old photos.

Janet,

I always, always think of you when I'm shopping for clothing. I remember waaaaay back in the day reading a post (MM) from you about building a basic wardrobe. Am I remembering correctly that you didn't (and perhaps still don't!) wear necklaces - only simple gold earrings?

That's left me gravitating towards simple things for several years.

I do still take my morning walk in shoes with laces, tho! ;-)

I completely get what you are saying, and often find myself a little unsure what I'm supposed to be buying. If I tried to dress like my middle schooler, I'd look ridiculous. But I certainly don't want to dress like my 66 year old mother. The 40's are definitely a fashion mystery to me! I'll be curious to see what you come up with! :)

Great pix, btw!

Brenda

You are always so thoughtful, as in full of thinking! :) I know I need to go through my closet for more than just hanger reclamation, but maybe I need to think about some other things before I start. Hmm.

Good post and love the pics. I did not realize either that that was you the other day. I'm sure I'll bump into you again!

You have great style! Keep away from the frump. lol. I need to get some style, I'm such a t-shirt and jeans kinda gal.

The photos of your lil' sis are just too adorable. I've always wanted a sister.

I miss you too!! you and Jerri were so cute (you both still are!)when you were little! I will call as I think we need to talk! I am not a "foo foo" girl, but I don't dress frumpy either!!

What a great post. I also have been thinking more about my wardrobe. for the past two weeks I have been looking at everything piece by piece and wondering why it has been in my closet. Am i waiting to look thinner? Not be thinner, just LOOK it? Why am I so influenced by fashion magazines with skinny teenie tiny models? Why Am i keeping tops from when I was out dancing until 5 am when I no longer do that? What am i hanging on to? i am half way done. it has been therapeudic. (and has made room in my closet for some carefully thought out shopping) :)

I love reading Hannabirke she is very inspiring.

I think that I can relate to your post here in regards to how I dress.

As for knitting, well, interestingly enough, I was chatting to Shannon from SSK earlier and we got to talk about throwing out yarns that we absolutely do not want anymore. And that is exactly what I will do tomorrow: Throwing away, i.e. in the bin, those yucky mohairs (very probably from the 70s) I was given a year and a half ago.

Interesting post. I for one am glad you take your non-frumpyness seriously. I'm sure whatever new look you have will be great.