Get up, get dressed, and get going (whether you leave the house or not)

I’m taking a risk by saying what I’m about to say or, rather, to disclose what I’m going to disclose. It feels particularly risky because there are a number of exes who read this blog – not only my exes, but my new husband’s exes as well.

About a week ago, I went for a long walk with a friend and about 3/4 of the way through it, she laughed nervously and blurted out: “I’ve stopped showering.”

What?

She went on to explain that she had stopped showering. In fact, she was down to pretty much once a week, though she assured me that she didn’t smell bad. And that her hair actually looked better when she only washed it once a week.

Okay.

To each her own.

And given that her hair did look pretty darned good, who am I to judge?

Yesterday I came home from a day of running errands and when Michael saw me he said, “Didn’t you sleep in that last night?” The words (and the night before and the night before that) hung in the air between us, unspoken.

I thought about it; and much to my chagrin he was right.

I also hadn’t taken a shower in three days.

Granted, I’d been working – hard. But that’s no excuse to go back to graduate school levels of hygiene (though I will swear to my dying day that I didn’t smell, either, though I will admit that my hair didn’t look nearly as good as my friend’s).

So last night, I took a shower, washed my hair (my grandmother is turning in her grave at the thought of any granddaughter of hers washing their hair at night) and fell asleep, exhausted, on a damp towel, dressed in a t-shirt (albeit a clean one) and a fleece.

This morning, I woke up feeling better than I had in, oh, three days. Go figure.

I also got up and, gasp, got dressed.

I pulled on a new pair of Gap Carpenter jeans (there’s a story there as well) and a new red sweater that is so friggin’ comfortable that I feel like I’m wearing a sock. It’s great. Not only would my grandmother approve – as she loved red – it’s so much better than sitting around in the same clothes that you slept in, and sat around in the day before, and so on….

So, what’s going on? What is about winter that reasonably outgoing women – reasonably successful women – stop showering, stop dressing not only for decency, but for pleasure/entertainment? And as I’ve heard from other women who live where I live, stop shaving their legs?

1) It’s cold (at least where I live) and sometimes staying in your clothes is simply more comfortable than changing them.

2) Today marked the end of Daylight Savings Time. Although I actually appreciated the extra of work time that comes along with Spring Forward/Fall Back today, it also means that the days are getting shorter. More to the point, people who live in the region of the country where I live (particularly if you are a transplant, like many of us are) have a tendency to get depressed.

For me (I am not speaking for my friend) my lackadaisical approach to appearance and, admittedly, hygiene, was a warning sign. Essentially, as we continue to barrel into winter, I need to start taking better care of myself instead of engaging in a marked lack of self care.

From now on, no matter how cold it is: shower, clean clothes, and accomplishing something, even if that something is nothing more than spending an hour dancing in the living room accompanied by Tori Amos and being gawked at by a very silly cat. Hopefully if I can manage those three things, everything else that needs to get taken care of will follow.

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