I swore I going to remain hip and fashionable until I died. Then I got old.
It started in my thirties. Suddenly I felt self-conscious going into stores with names like Forever 21. Would they laugh at the middle aged lady who didn’t even know how old she was? I persevered—thanks to online shopping—and I liked to think I was still relatively cool. I even refused to buy mom jeans.
I was late to some trends. I resisted leggings for as long as possible.
If you were old enough to remember wearing it the first time around, you are too old to wear it the second time around, the old adage says, and I definitely remember leggings, though we called them stretch pants. But once I succumbed to the bliss of them, I chided myself for my reluctance. I was going to live in leggings and/or yoga pants until I died—or so I thought, until I discovered joggers.
Like leggings, I had initially resisted joggers, but December hit and I am a colossal baby about being cold and I needed something thicker. The moment I slid the fleece joggers on I was in love. They were soft. Warm. Perfectly delightful. The tapered leg was slimming. The loose waist was not only comfortable but completely annihilated any muffinage. I was going to wear nothing but joggers for the rest of the season.
I wore them proudly to my son’s hockey game, but once he was on the ice and I was walking by myself all I could focus on was how baggy they were. I went into the bathroom and rolled up the waistband, but unfortunately my hoodie was a slim-fit and didn’t disguise the newly created lump at my waist. I put my hands in the pockets and tried to hold up the sag, to eliminate my trampoline crotch. I wished I had worn a longer jacket, or better yet—resisted the irresistible lure of the joggers and stuck with my faithful yoga pants.
I had thought I was ready to wear joggers in public. I was horrendously mistaken. Luckily, watching a hockey game is a sitting down experience. No one had to know about my pants regret. I didn’t go to the concessions stand, and ran quickly to retrieve my child as soon as the game ended.
I still love my fleece joggers, but I plan to love them at home, or while wearing a very long jacket. I realize my fashionista status—which was only ever dubious at best—is far behind me. The fashion elevator has binged at my floor, and it’s time for me to get off of it before I start thinking I'm not too old for high-waisted jeans.
All is not lost, though. There is freedom in being fashionably irrelevant. I can frolic unconstrained by trend. I can devote my life to the pursuit of 1980’s slouchy socks. If I can admit that my hip years are behind me, I can wear the same clothes for decades and take all that money I save and spend it on books and chocolate—two things that never go out of style.
Copyright © 2023 Lara Lillibridge
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