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Dress shopping & body image

April 23, 2011

Today I am going to go shopping for a dress to wear to the finale party.

This brings up a lot of issues for me. For about the last five years, every time I’ve had a special occasion to go to, I buy something that is:

1. Cheap. Not so much in quality, just price. So clearance racks, op-shopping for brand-name dresses in good condition, you get the idea.
2. Just okay. Fits me, doesn’t gape or bulge, doesn’t emphasise the areas I was most unhappy with (legs, tummy), but doesn’t necessarily actually flatter me.

Part of this is because I don’t really have the time for shopping, at least not child-free, and anyone with kids understands that clothes shopping for oneself with the kids in tow is not easy. Evie is pretty patient, but there’s still the problem that nowhere posher than Target actually has room for a stroller or trolley in the changerooms, heck, many nicer shops I can’t even really fit a stroller in the shop without feeling like Evie is probably putting vaguely sticky 2-year-old hands over everything.

But part of it is because I don’t feel I DESERVE something really gorgeous. If I’m not going to look great, I shouldn’t be spending much money. I’ve been a SAHM for five years so there’s also the notion of my value tied up in that, i.e. I don’t earn any money so I don’t deserve to spend much on myself. (Please note that this idea doesn’t come from my partner, it’s self-sabotage.)

So today I am going to go shopping, by myself. I am going to look at the sale racks, sure, but I am not going to buy something simply because it’s on sale. I’m not going to settle for ‘okay’. I’ve still got two weekends to go, so if I don’t find anything today, that’s okay too.

(The cheapskate part of me is not happy because I will probably also need new shoes and a new bra – my boobs have shrunk along with the rest of me, and the only ones that fit properly at the moment are sports bras.)

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