Every now and then, I have the opportunity to watch myself, from the viewpoint of the guardian, while my Inner Child is doing her thing. When I catch myself in a moment like this, I usually get a good giggle out of it, but today, I was a little concerned. During my lunch break, I wandered over to Winner’s, a popular Canadian designer discount chain where both the Inner Child and I were taken by a pair of very cute although highly impractical leopard print Betsey Johnson peep toe stilettos with platinum heels. The “guardian me” looked at the price tag that read $129, meanwhile, the inner child made pretty faces at the shoes and proceeded to pet them, with the grain of the fur, of course. That’s when I started to wonder if the fashion deprivation I’ve been going through lately was akin to cutting off the oxygen to my Inner Child’s brain.
Since the end of summer rudely ushered in the realization that none of my fall clothes fit me anymore, neither me nor the child have been happy campers. With one skirt, one pair of black pants and a pair of jeans to my name, my wardrobe options have been pretty limited when I’m faced with occasions where my legging clad butt just isn’t appropriate. And thanks to all those pull-ups I’ve been doing at the gym, a slew of my tops, my favorite dress, my fall jacket and even some bras don’t fit anymore. I’d rather have the muscle than a tag with a smaller size in my clothes, and have since brought a good portion of my wardrobe to a consignment shop to see if I can at least raise a bit of cash to buy a few new things (the bras aren’t for sale though, sorry), but in the meantime, it’s slim pickings for me. And it sucks.
The fact that my fashion personality can change from one hour to the next makes it even worse. One day, I’ll feel like dressing in a respectable, classy outfit only to throw it off a few hours later for something inspired by Peg Bundy (hence the love of all things leopard). I’m in need of some intense fashion therapy, but unfortunately, if there is a medical benefits program that covers it, I’m not aware of it or else I would have signed up ages ago.
I know that clothing – as in the kind that keeps you warm and on the legal side of that fine line that separates us from indecent exposure – is on the list of basic necessities of life, but what about cute clothes that fit well and make you feel good? When I started exercising and went down a few sizes two years ago, buying a whole new wardrobe didn’t seem unreasonable at all, and in fact, it felt quite necessary with pants falling off of me. But this time, I feel guilty about it. Perhaps it’s because the difference between then and now is that last time, I had the money to buy such things. But if clothes don’t fit, they don’t fit – whether they are one size too small or 5 sizes too big. And there is apparently no correlation between the size of my butt and the amount of cash in my bank account either.
While we are on the topic, I’m starting to think that I have guilt issues that need some resolving. Not only am I feeling bad about this impending mini shopping-spree, but I noticed today that I can feel guilt at the drop of a hat when I’m at work. And I would really like to rid myself of this icky emotion. Now that I’ve had a week back in my old office environment, I’ve been able to examine what makes my work brain tick from a whole new perspective. I’ve found that I very much like getting things done. Being busy? Awesome! Keeping the ball rolling? Woohoo! Waiting on email replies? Ok…. I’m starting to get edgy, but I’ll be ok. Having to push the pause button on a project until I hear back from a third party? Why, no, I’m not PMSing, that’s genuine irritability you’re sensing there. What’s this, now everything is at a standstill until I hear back from my contacts? So I can’t get *anything* done? Although it may look as though I have ants in my pants, it’s just me feeling extremely uncomfortable with the fact that I’m not being productive, which leads me to feel – yes – guilty.
I’ve had it hard-wired into my brain that when I am at the work, I’m supposed to be working. You know, getting stuff done, making things happen. So what happens if nothing is happening? If I’ve done all I can and all that’s left to do is wait? I seem to equate this with doing a bad job, and I really don’t like doing a bad job. Nobody else thinks I’m doing a bad job though, but I do, and it makes me feel horrible. Guilty. And very stressed out. And all over nothing! In fact, I’m getting stressed just writing about it now. And while I do, my guardian, the observer hidden deep down inside of me, puts on her spectacles, leans in and lets out a “hmmmmmm…” as she bites down on the nail of her index finger while taking a good, close look a me in all of my freakish, guilty glory.
So if I realize all of this and see it happening, shouldn’t I be able to just talk myself out of it and spare myself the expense of a therapist? So far, it’s not working. I seem to have this need to please people and not only meet and exceed their expectations, but also my own. In most other areas of my life, I’ve been able to relax and ditch this guilt, but not at the office. Not at this office anyway. Bespectacled Sylvie wonders if it has more to do with the fear of letting down co-workers who feel like family than it does with being a productive little worker bee. But she has to stop examining me for now – the Inner Child, fascinated by her glasses, has nicely asked to try them on and is busy getting finger prints all over the lenses. Well, at least my wallet is relieved that she’s gotten her mind off of those shoes.This post may contain affiliate links.
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