Ok, this post is about me this time. I'm thinking there must be at least a few other moms who feel the same way as I do.
I used to love shopping. Like, clothes shopping. Well, I used to really enjoy grocery shopping too, before it was such a chore. I used to be able to go into a mall and peruse for hours. I had no problem trying on clothes and buying new outfits for myself.
That was before I had kids.
Now, when I go to a mall, I'm usually there for the boys, or on the rare occasion, for DH. But it's almost NEVER for me.
I love shopping for my boys. I could spend hours picking out outfits, although they couldn't stand that. They hate shopping. I don't like shopping for DH though. It makes me feel resentful, like, why should he get to have new clothes when I don't? I know, I shouldn't feel like that, because its not like he is a clothes-horse, or even has much sense of fashion at all, and he does need more presentable clothes for work than I do. But that's not the only reason. He is also very picky, and will try on item after item of whatever he's looking for, and it's sooooo boring!
But my title is overwhelmed, and I put that for a reason, because you see, when I enter a mall or department store, I feel completely overwhelmed! It's like, I don't even know where to begin, and I start to shut down inside. If I'm there to actually buy myself something (like that EVER happens!), I feel awkward and stupid. I look around me at all the people who seem to know what they're doing, and I feel lost. I don't know what's trendy anymore. I enter a store and I'm afraid to touch anything. I can't tell if something looks good or not. I can't figure out if I'm looking at something that's WAY too young to be seen on an almost-forty-year-old, or if it belongs on a 70-year-old. Especially when it comes to shoes! Give me runners any day!
We were at the mall today. DH needed to return a shirt his Nan bought him (size XXL, what was she thinking??) and he insisted he needs work pants. I also needed underwear. Not a difficult task, since I always buy them from LaSenza with the 10 for, or in this case, 7 for $xx deal. Most of my underwear was embarrassingly (well it would be if anyone saw them!) holey.
I was looking around at the people, and I couldn't believe what I saw. Many of the young girls, who looked like they were too young to be wandering around on their own, were wearing clothes from the 80's. Tight-legged, brightly coloured pants, neons, big bows in their hair. The eighties always seemed to me to be an era of fashion we should have left behind permanently, but not so, it seems. The clothes in the stores were such a mish-mosh of things, I wouldn't know if something made an outfit or a fashion eyesore. Any pre-conceived notion I had of actually maybe picking something up for myself was laughable the moment we walked through those doors. I instantly felt like I shouldn't be there, that I was out of my depth.
And then there's the guilt. Oh, the guilt of spending money on myself. We've been in "we-have-no-money" mode for so long now, that my brain is pre-programmed to abhor the thought of selfish spending. There's always someone else who needs something more, like the boys need shoes, or coats, or underwear, or whatever.
I did pick up the underwear, but we left the mall in less than an hour after arriving. Gone are the days of spending a whole day shopping.
My sister S is actually the only one that seems to be able to get me in the mood for shopping and buying something for myself. But we haven't had a spree since she had her first child, three years ago. I think the last new clothes I actually bought for myself, aside from the undies, were a couple of t-shirts from the grocery store. Yeah, the grocery store. And that was about a year ago.
It's a good thing I stick to fairly neutral clothes - jeans, t-shirts, hoodies, all plain. If you were to look back on pictures of me (what few there are, but that's another story) over the past ten years, you wouldn't be able to tell what year it was from my outfits, or haircut, lol.