Yesterday, I found my favorite pair of sweatpants while decluttering my bedroom.
Now, if you’re the kind of person who read that and wondered how anyone could possibly be so cluttered, so disorganized that they actually lost an entire pair of pants, you should probably leave now. We will most likely never be friends, and I doubt that you’ll enjoy the rest of this.
For everyone else, let me just say that they were neatly folded up in the bottom of a Rubbermaid tote filled with off-season clothes. I’m not sure how they got there, but I was thrilled. So thrilled, in fact, that I stripped right out of my other pants, stepped into my faves, and did a little happy dance.
At which point, the reality of the situation hit me.
I have a favorite pair of sweatpants.
I’ve never exactly been a shining example of fashion at its best, but at least I managed to dress myself. In real clothes. I was a professional hairdresser – I wore heels and dressed up almost every day; I never left the house without make-up and big hair (hey, the higher the hair, the closer to God). I had favorite jeans that made my butt look good, a favorite blouse that showed off my cleavage, my favorite pair of black strappy dress shoes with two-inch spiky heels.
Now my clothes are all stretchy and comfy, and I am not sure how long it’s been since I last put on shoes. Winter boots, yes. Shoes, not a clue.
What the hell happened?
It started after my accident, when I had to spend three months in tank tops and elastic-waist garments to go around my brace. Three months without a bra! I called it my Double-D Vacation. And since I couldn’t reach (or see) my own feet, I got into the habit of wearing flip flips and step-in shoes.
Then came the moment when I had to accept that this is as good as it is going to get. Even without the brace, I’ll never work in a salon again. My future, from this point on, is going to have to involve sitting. Whether I make it as a writer or end up doing some other kind of work from home, I will never again have to dress up pretty for work.
So I’m not sure if dressing like a schlub has made me depressed, or if I dress like a schlub because I’m depressed about my disability. Either way, I look and feel like crap when I dress like this. Being able to work in one’s jammies may seem appealing, but it loses its magic after a while. Trust me, by month twenty-one, it’s just embarrassing.
I’d like to hear from some other writers who work from home. How do you dress when it’s just you and your computer all day long? Comfy jammies, or dress for success? Does anybody really do up the hair and make-up and treat the home office as a real office?