Thursday, July 26, 2012

Answers Questioned

No therapy post.  I just don't know what to say anymore.  My individual therapy is tomorrow and I think there will be an update on that Monday.

Meg has been out a bit and I haven't written about it yet: I saw the new Batman movie, went to another clothing swap, wandered the museums of DC as well as the shops of Old Town Alexandria.  I'm organising my posts and I'll be writing soon.  A preview of my museum/Batman outfit appears here, but there's much more to this than a field trip to DC!

Today I'd like to address a couple of recent comments.

A week or so ago, Dani asked me how I weather the, um, weather.  It has been hot, in case anyone didn't notice, and dressing is definitely better in cool weather than warm.  Dani wrote:

Since I know the heat and humidity in DC is, if anything, worse than here in Philly, how do you deal with it when dressed?

She noticed I have switched to bare legs to help keep me cool, but wanted to know more about the layers dressing requires.

First of all, I'd rather wear hose.  I have a variety of flaws ~ spider veins is the biggie ~ which I'd rather hide.  But virtually no-one wears hose in the summer in this town.  I could go with a coloured tight as a fashion statement but any sort of leg covering in the summer here will attract extra attention.  But the real reason for the bare legs is, I had my toenails painted and I want to show them off.  I have many more closed-toed shoes than open but I'm rotating among my (three) open-toed sandals just because my toenails are pretty.

Yes, I'm that shallow.

Meg has not been out for very many years.  I used to consider Meg to be available when the temperature was above 50 or so (10C) since I don't own a coat.  I had a couple that I picked up via thrift shop or freecycle, but they take a lot of my limited closet space so I passed them on to someone else.  I also considered 80 an absolute upper limit for comfort: forms sweat, a wig is hot, makeup is heavy, and I usually have some form of shapewear underneath ~ most often, a waist cinch which is tight and heavy.  But I've also worn a cinch and shaping camisole, or at least a camisole to cover up the boning in the cinch.  I also like slips and often wear one... one more layer.

If you go back to the very beginning of my blog, I was ready to abort my airline travel if it was too warm.  It was really at the limit I had set.  I still don't know if I would have gone if the temperature would have been higher.  I now think I'll fly again, but on that day I truly considered this a once-in-a-lifetime event.  Cancelling would have been depressing.

And I was warm, but not horribly so.  I was OK, but I was also indoors a lot of the time.  And that kind of set the scene for my future outings.  Since then, I was out in Las Vegas when it was well over 100.  And that day when I had the flat tire it was around 100, if I recall correctly.

I'm glad I don't limit myself any more.

By the way, Stana used to be "put away" for the summer.  Not any more, and I believe her rationale was, other women don't lock themselves indoors during the summer so why should she?  I say, you go girl!

And for the dress in the picture, I skipped the shapewear completely.  The cami is because it's a tad plungy for me.  And I did the same for my "clothing swap" dress.  It seems a high waist helps.  I did not know that.

Karen also wrote and scolded me for sounding like a "cub reporter" and giving the who, what, where, when, and why of my weekend out and ignoring feelings and my personal reactions.  I frantically updated Wednesday's and Thursday's (UU church) posts per her suggestions.  I'm still not very good at writing the feelings behind my dressing, but I'll try to pay attention and improve.

I'd like to add a general "feelings" comment: before going out, I am anxious.  I don't lose as much sleep as I used to.  Once I start getting dressed, I get very calm and that usually persists until I get home.

I also was more anxious Wednesday (before Meg's therapy appointment); the calm that engulfed me while showering sort of persevered and kept me feeling good for the next outing; the new calm from Friday lasted through Sunday.

All of that said, I keep doing new things, stepping out of my comfort zone, and I can't tell if I'm nervous because I'm in unfamiliar territory, or if it's because I'm Meg in unfamiliar territory.

While getting dressed Sunday for church I suddenly got a little anxious.  I attributed that to going to church by myself for the first time ever in my life.  I was not particularly nervous going to synagogue Friday ~ it was new, but I knew what to expect there.  The therapist's office had the element of surprise (for her), which is, as I have said, a bad idea.  But I was fine.

When I got to church, they wanted me to sign a mailing list thing ~ I declined.  I also did not take a welcome packet.  I said "I'd rather look on the internet for the information than waste paper."  I did fill in a name tag and was suddenly shaky because my handwriting is horrible, for a female.  Using a sharpie on a name tag did NOT make it better.  I scribbled "Meg Winters" ~ it was barely readable ~ and I took it off during the service.  But other things, though outside my little closet, were expected and OK.  I expected to be greeted, to talk to someone about joining, and so on.

Like makeup, going out and interacting takes practice before you can do it without screwing up.  Or at least screwing up too badly.


  1. Meg
    Thank you for giving us a thumbnail of your outings. We now have a basis for holding your painted tootsies to the toaster as we await the play by play details.

    You really are a fine role model for other CDs. I suppose that what we need to get out and about is the means, motive and opportunity. Often there is a genuine basis for one of these elements to block an outing. You are showing us that that the most frequent block to getting out and about is a excuse. Often it is based on fear and concern.

    So far it seems like your 'house sitting' is more of a positive thing. I am glad that you have used this opportunity to give Meg some exercise. I think that if you simply sat home and did not get out than, at the end of the episode, you would see it as a missed opportunity.

    Thanks again for a good post and for being the reluctant role model that you have become.


  2. Thank you for a wonderful blog post. Dressing in the heat is tough but like you and Stana said, real women do it. Of course, we need more layers and, at least for me, it is not really dressing without hose and like you said you see only bare legs on GGs in the heat.

    I also surmise that in terms of getting out and mixing that this is something that becomes easier and more natural the more often that you do it. Your getting out and mixing with the civilian population is good for all of us.



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