M will be 3 in September 2010. Anyone who knows me in real life knows that I am not really a “girly girl”–whatever that really means–and you won’t find much pink among my threads. A few dresses hang in my closet, but the fine layer of dust gives away that I am not very comfortable wearing them often. So whether it has been a conscious or subconscious decision on my part, M has not had more than a dress here or there in her wardrobe over the past few years, other than those purchased for special occasions. Aside from my own personal clothing preferences, they just were not worth the hassle, what with the jamming of pudgy little legs and diapers into tights and all.
But about three or four weeks ago we were going through a bin of second hand clothes that had been hibernating under her bed and there was a floral seersucker dress in there–bright pinks and greens. Probably something you’d find on Lilly Pulitzer’s cousin’s bathroom walls or something. And M was immediately drawn to it…in a way that I had never expected. Here was a little girl who had never before expressed any interest in any particular piece of clothing now begging to put it on and wear it. Every. Day. She was using phrases like “it’s my favorite” and “I love that dress”. And you could see it in her body language and her eyes how amazing and confident she felt in it.
Being at such a young age, I did not expect her to have that same kind of feeling that I have had for certain clothes over time. You know the ones. Even when you’re feeling a little stout or blimpy, there’s that shirt in your closet that does wonders for your shoulders. Or those pants that somehow gracefully hide the mounds of ice cream you ate last weekend so that you can still walk with your head held high. Even the funky socks that you break out when you’re otherwise not feeling up to the task of impressing anyone, at least your feet will look fantastic.
Given that her father and I are really the only ones who say anything about what she’s wearing for the day, minus those days we’re with grandparents, I really think that this feeling came from within, and is her first foray into experiencing a boost of self-esteem purely based on what she’s wearing. And so, despite the fact that the dress may soon be walking on its own, we have been indulging her and thus the dress is being worn almost daily. We can have the battles about clothes later when she’s older. For now, if she’s feeling pretty who am I to tell her no…I hope she always feels that way.
What clothing makes you feel fabulous?