The Hardest Goodbye

As women, we all know that red strapless dress, we have at the back of our closet, well… It may not be red, it may not be strapless, but you’d know the one I’m talking about — the one which we’re saving for when we get thinner, fuller, a better complexion or skin tone — THAT one! It’s our goal dress and there’s not just one of them, there are a million! The jeans we wore on the first day of college which we want to fit back into, the dress we wore for our best friend’s wedding, or the one we wore for one New Year’s eve which was the BEST ONE EVER! It doesn’t matter what the outfit is, what it looks like, or whether we will ever be able to fit into it again — it has to be saved!

Today was a hard day for me. I just got rid of my red strapless dress. I’ve had it for 13 years (wow, the number is really unlucky — even for dresses) and it’s been with me through some wonderful times. It’s even met a cute guy back in the day! But the time has come to finally come to terms with reality and know that dress is never going to look the same on me as it did when I was in college (i.e. if I ever manage to squeeze all my flab in it). After the initial (4 hour) struggle with myself whether to “keep” or “give” one of my most prized possessions, the decision which came out was sort of liberating. I have not worn the dress for 10+ years but have constantly berated myself for not being able to fit into it. Today, I let go of not just a dress, but of an idealistic version of myself which even I couldn’t live upto.

More importantly, once you’re able to give up the dress, the rest of the stuff is a piece of cake. So my spring cleaning this time (yes, I’m aware of the fact that I’m two seasons late) is a huge success. I’m freer and lighter and hopefully would be able to dress a lot faster for the next outing — I’ll actually be able to find some clothes in my closet rather than trying to dig through a maze (it would be easier to find a ring in a ball pit than to find a particular top in the heaps of clothes piled on my bed!)

In no way am I giving up on my goals of having the body I want, I’m just “adjusting” the goal to better suit reality. As women, we often kill ourselves trying to be this perfect version of ourselves which we’ve dreamt up in our heads – be it a physical aspiration, a mental prowess or an emotional stronghold we crave for. It’s time to let go of the immaculate image we are trying to attain and embrace the everyday spirit. Set goals, have big dreams, aspire for milestones, but don’t lose yourself along the way to a pristine image of what’s been in your head the past 10 years. Update the image, allow it to have flaws. Someone once said, the scars that remain are a sign of character and maturity. So, ladies, get into your closets, find those “goal dresses” hidden at the back of your closet and re-evaluate. If they really are achievable and attainable, by all means, go for it; but if they’re past their expiration date and are due a separation, then part with no guilt, a touch of sorrow and good memories of the past. The worst that can happen is you may actually have a closet which looks somewhat organized and a bed you can see once again! 🙂

My wardrobe after the cleaning!



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