I’m Not Sorry You Had to See Me Like This

“I’m sorry, I’m not wearing any makeup.”
—I’m not sorry, though. This is my face.

“I’m sorry, I didn’t get dressed up today.”
—No, I’m not. I’m comfortable in this.

LET’S STOP APOLOGIZING FOR EXISTING, EH?

I refuse to continue to operate under a false pretense of “presentability.” I don’t have to look “pretty” at preschool drop-off OR pick-up. I don’t need to spend two hours grooming before I go to the grocery store. Don’t get me wrong, I occasionally squeeze into my shapewear and get all lacquered up for a special event. I just don’t feel the need to impress anybody on the daily. My appearance is not an accurate indicator of whether I am still possessed of my dignity and self-esteem, and the UPS driver doesn’t give a damn anyway.

In fairness, I work from home, so my professional dress code involves a doorbell protocol and the occasional “nudist Tuesday” when we want to lighten up the atmosphere at the office. If you do indeed have to dress to a certain standard for work, then you have my deepest sympathies, although I do think my unsolicited advice will hold true for you, too. I am sorry that you’re forced to wear pants—there’s not much I can do about that part—but keep this wisdom in mind when you’re painting your face and plastering your hair tomorrow morning. 

Now, there are those who would argue that you should look like candy and smell like flowers every day entirely for yourself. Here’s me telling you that if that kind of energy expenditure makes you feel like a million bucks, then you have my sincerest blessing! It makes me feel like that one moldy penny trying to blend in with all the shinies like everything’s fine and my insides aren’t corroding, so… no, thanks.

There’s a bit more to my story, and I think it bears explaining. I have an anxiety disorder. When I get in the shower knowing I have to be somewhere soon, I inevitably sweat for the next two to three hours. I have to leave time to cool off between attempts to adorn myself. It usually goes something like this…

  • Cold shower, towel dry
  • Change mind about previously selected clothing
  • Stand in front of tower fan for 20 minutes 
  • Apply deodorant and moisturizer 
  • Sweat for 20 minutes
  • Blow dry and style hair
  • Sweat for 20 minutes
  • Apply primer and foundation
  • Sweat for 20 minutes
  • Apply powder and color, etc
  • Sweat for 20 minutes
  • Blot makeup, blot armpits
  • Put on undergarments 
  • Sweat for 20 minutes
  • Put on clothing, question life choices
  • Finish mascara and lipstick, etc
  • Put on jewelry, initiate shoe crisis
  • Continue sweating for an additional 30 to 60 minutes before I can finally relax and enjoy my outing

It doesn’t matter if it is 5 below Fahrenheit, this happens every. single. time. I used to just not go out. I used to panic and cancel. Now I give myself extra time and an additional towel. I hope this helps you understand a little better why I’m not sorry that I didn’t get dressed up for our play date. Everyone’s process is unique, but I would hazard a guess that there are a LOT of women out there with routines similar to mine.

Here’s the thing: we shouldn’t need a doctor’s note to excuse us from spending our precious time and energy getting dolled up. And for what? To impress my other mom-friends who also wish they weren’t wearing an underwire? Nah.

CAN WE ALL JUST COLLECTIVELY GIVE EACH OTHER A PASS?

Don’t be sorry. Just be you.
I like you.

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