Truth in AdvertisingPosted: February 24, 2014
<disclaimer> All the narcissism and navel-gazing and appearance questioning stuff ahead. </disclaimer>
I don’t dress like the other moms I’ve run into in our new town. When genetic gifts were handed out, I was so busy running to the front of the “MAKE ME TALLER” line that I completely skipped the “put an outfit together” and “master the 5-minute face” lines. Which has never really bothered me before – I’ve got a nice working wardrobe of unisex athletic/sweat pants, plain t-shirts and ponytail holders, and am slowly learning that there CAN be a middle ground between full-face-makeup and oh-my-god-are-you-ill.
The rub? In our new location, meeting people on my own without a tether to a job, I am realizing that this uniform invites certain… assumptions regarding my athleticism. In that people assume I have some. Not unreasonable – six foot tall, skinny, dresses like a jock… But I don’t. Have any athletic ability – not even a little. So when the coach of Little Scientist’s bumblebee basketball team tosses me the ball and asks me to help run drills, what do I do?
And here’s my dilemma – right now, I fake it. Turns out, I kinda like being sporty. I like the ease of conversation it affords, the automatic team camaraderie that gets tossed around. It gives me a way to relate to the other moms and dads without having to figure out how to dress / talk / look like them. I don’t exactly SAY I played high school or college ball, but I definitely don’t disabuse folks of that notion. And it’s starting to feel a little bit like lying.
But it’s also part of a bigger problem, foisting my comfort in appearance onto other people. Poor Nerddad’s been bearing the brunt of this one for over a decade. Case in point: I like my hair short, he likes it long. Not in a creepy I’MCONTROLLINGYOURHAIR way, but in a “well if you ask my OPINION” way. So why do I make him feel guilty when I want to cut all my hair off? Why do I put him in a position of having to lie to me or uncomfortably voice his opinion, when we both know (a) that he really doesn’t care about my hair and (b) it’s my hair. Why can’t I just own it?
And there it is. What is my problem in OWNING how I appear to the world?
Today’s deep thoughts brought to you by my 18th load of laundry. And a looming haircut. Sheesh.