And so, my former life as a poorly dressed sea gypsy at the beach perfectly fit my attitude.
I spent the majority of my days barefoot while wearing a bathing suit and a beat-up old T-shirt.
On the days that I absolutely had to leave, I rotated the wearing of three or four long skirts and a couple of different tops with flip-flops.
Last June, when I moved back to Indiana, I was quickly shocked back into reality.
I’ve been in a clothing crisis ever since.
That first huge hurdle was to get through the winter months, which, for me, began in late September.
Yes, that’s right.
I was freezing to death long before winter officially arrived.
By the time November came around, I was grabbing sweaters from every female closet I could get my hands on.
Now here we go again.
My new back-to-Indiana closet is full of black: long black skirts and long black sweaters.
Trust me, I do not have one single thread of Easter-egg inspired clothing for spring.
A few days ago I stopped in at a consignment store (because I absolutely will not go to a mall, and I don’t care what you promise me, I will not do it).
I didn’t have a lot of extra cash to spend. So when I found a pale peach dress, I decided it was a good start.
I dearly love pajamas.
But they are not yet socially acceptable as street wear. And no one wears long black shrouds like mine in the middle of June.
So anyway, the peach dress seemed like a good idea. It was the kind of dress that could be dressed up or down.
Well … let me rephrase that.
The peach dress seemed like a good idea until I was actually in the middle of trying it on.
When I removed the dress from the hanger I realized it was lined.
“Wow, this has been apricey dress,” I muttered happily because in my world that means it won’t wrinkle very much.
As I pulled the dress over my head, the lining felt much tighter than the fabric.
The lining was probably more snug to allow the pretty peach fabric to fall beautifully and make me look 20 pounds skinnier.
I was suddenly imprisoned by that darn lining.
My arms were stuck straight up in the air. That slick lining material was so tight against my face that my nose was forced upward, pointing directly at my raised arms.
As I tried to wiggle at least one arm free, I lost my footing.
I nearly fell out of the dressing room, which was made private only by a curtain on a rod.
When I envisioned how sexy that moment would have been – trapped by the dress, with black socks on my lotionless, hairy legs, toppling out of the changing room like a wild headless zombie – I started to laugh like a moron.
As quickly as I cracked myself up, I experienced a bit of an anxiety attack.
It was starting to freak me out that I could not move.
“Oh my gosh, I have dentures. So that means that I can’t even bite a hole in the lining and rip it enough to save myself,” I whispered under my breath.
Then I started to laugh again.
“Is everything OK in there?” asked a voice in the next dressing room.
An adrenaline rush got one arm free, and as I yanked the dress off the motion nearly took my left ear off too.
“That’s all you plan to try on?” the nice clerk smiled.
“Oh yeah,” I sighed as I blotted at my sweaty face. “I’m worn out by the stress. I need a nap.”