“What do you mean you didn’t get them?”
This is not happening. Surely this is not possible. What am I going to do now?
All this ball-dropping is getting ridiculous. Certain balls need to stay in the air. This particular ball needed to get from our closet to the car. Instead, it was hanging on the doorknob of my office at our house. An hour away. And we were supposed to walk in the door of my twentieth high school reunion in thirty minutes. I had nothing to wear.
And I had planned to look amazingly hot and youthful and perfect.
Last week, I bought a pair of skinny black jeans, and I paid full price for them at Loft. I never, ever pay full price for clothing. If you don’t count Costco. And occasionally Target. But these were great jeans. My butt looked twenty years younger. I planned to pair these jeans with a cute silky top, which I bought two years ago at an outlet, and sandals I’ve owned for several years, also purchased at an outlet – because, you know, I’m not vain or anything. I’m not going to spend a lot of money on an entire outfit to wear for one evening. Just one great pair of jeans.
That – again – were still at my house. An hour away.
Before we left our house that morning, I brought our hanging clothes from the closet to my office door, which is mere steps away from the back door leading to the garage. We would spend the night at my parents’ house, so we had all of our suitcases and pillows and movies and books in the trunk.
But not the hanging clothes. Not my hot, sexy jeans. A small detail that escaped us until 7:30 that evening.
So I stood frozen, face scowling, fingertips rubbing my throbbing head. I couldn’t speak, I couldn’t think, I couldn’t move. I briefly considered not going. It was too late to go shopping. I couldn’t wear what I had on.
This is bad. Bad, bad, bad.
Michael – practical, reasonable, sensible Michael – carefully and quietly (so as not to receive a fierce tongue-lashing) spoke up.
“Why don’t we see if your mom has anything you can wear?”
Fabulous. I’m going to wear my mother’s clothes to my twentieth high school reunion. As if I didn’t humiliate myself enough by wearing her clothes when I was actually in high school.
But my mom has great taste in clothes. And for a member of AARP, she has a killer figure. I hope I can look that good when I’m her age. So, sulking and fuming, I followed her to the closet.
She pulled out a few things – a pair of skinny CK jeans, a few tops, a couple of short skirts. Some were too…um, mature for my taste, others were something I would have picked out myself, but not necessarily for my reunion.
I was certain the jeans wouldn’t fit me because they were two sizes bigger than what I normally wear. But I tried them on anyway, just to humor my mom.
Y’all. They fit perfectly.
So do I get excited because I have something to wear, or do I throw myself down on the floor and pitch a hysterical tantrum because I fit into jeans two sizes bigger than I’m supposed to fit into?
(Though I’m convinced Loft sizes their clothes down and tricks you into thinking you’re a size smaller than you really are – and therefore buy more clothes. Evil.)
No time for a tantrum. I decided to be happy. I found a nice blouse and a coordinating necklace. Good enough. Michael, whose clothes were also hanging on my office door an hour away, found a shirt and a pair of flip flops in my dad’s closet to wear with the shorts he had been wearing all day. Then I walked stomped back through the family room, and Griffin said, “Mom, don’t be mad.”
“I’m not mad,” I told him. “You know how you expect something to go one way, and it totally changes, and you get upset?” (ooooohhhh, he should understand that completely) “That’s where I am. I’m fine. Really.”
And I was. We had a wonderful evening. Twenty years’ separation between high school and adulthood creates healed, whole people who can reconnect with each other without pretense. One of our classmates eloquently told us, “I think I had more fun with you over this past weekend than over four years of high school. Gone are the days of popularity and cliques. It was great to hear all of your life stories and witness the amazing human beings you have become.”
We’ve grown up – and out. We’ve enjoyed success and marriage and kids and careers. We can celebrate each other’s company without worrying about impressions. We are (gulp) adults.
Appearances and associations don’t matter anymore. I truly enjoyed catching up with everyone, regardless of whether we were close friends or mere acquaintances twenty years ago.
Which is precisely why God delivered a swift kick to my thirty-eight year old butt when I became overly concerned about what I was wearing. I totally deserved my absent-minded moment. I needed to be taken down a notch and handed some perspective. I needed to remind myself of what I’m trying to teach my daughter. I don’t have to work so hard anymore. I don’t have to worry about my hair or makeup or what I’m wearing. I can be myself. I can feel good about who I am simply because I am me.
I can return the full-price black sexy jeans because I don’t need them.
HA! Wouldn’t that be a touching, profound ending for a post? I have no intention of taking them back! My thirty-eight year old gluteals need all the help they can get.