I have issues. About my femininity I mean.
In my twenties, I wore dresses to work everyday with three-inch heels. When the transit system went on strike, I walked three miles each way in heels because sneakers and dresses looked tacky.
I think I was trying to make up for the fact that I wasn’t dainty or pretty. And like many people, I wanted most what I couldn’t have.
As I’ve gotten older, I thought I was past all that.
I wouldn’t wear heels for a bet. I don’t even own a dress. And my last pair of stockings is dry rotting in a drawer while I hang onto them “just in case.”
But then I ordered a pair of sailing gloves.
The company instructions told me to measure the widest part of my hand and check their sizing chart. The women’s glove sizes didn’t go up high enough to fit my hand. I had to buy a men’s large.
And I’m also having a tough time scheduling a hair cut. Shoulder length hair doesn’t go well with sailing, humidity, and limited fresh water. So before I leave for Panama, I’ve decided to cut my hair short. But then, I worry, I’ll really look like a boy.
If only I were as unselfconscious as Honey.
She is pretty and dainty. Everyone says so. But she doesn’t mind looking like a boy.
Strangers on the street call her “Buddy” (because, you know, all dogs are boys and all cats are girls, right?).
Honey throws herself into a game of bitey face with wild abandon. She doesn’t care who’s looking and she never worries about getting slobber in her fur.
Isn’t that one of the best things about dogs? Their lack of embarrassment or self-consciousness?
I definitely need to learn that from Honey.
She’s happy sitting on her pillow looking like Cleopatra on her barge. Especially when I toss her nibbles to reward her for sitting pretty while I’m making dinner.
She’s happy rolling in stinky things with her legs splayed.
Honey embraces her inner lady and her inner tomboy.
My inner lady is not as pretty or as dainty as Honey’s. But I can embrace the inner lady who is nurturing and caring. It might be more of an iron lady, but a lady nonetheless.
And my inner tomboy gets me all over town on a bike, finds me hauling heavy groceries home on the bus, and keeps me from falling over from overly enthusiastic dog greetings.
Maybe embracing my inner lady and my inner tomboy has nothing to do with looks. And once I learn that, I’ll be half way to being as good a lady and as good a tomboy as Honey.
Your Turn: Are you self-conscious about something? Is your dog?