Fire away with your political opinions on Facebook. These days my 59 year-old grannie panties are in a twist over Kallie Provencher’s post on Rantchic.com entitled “24 Things Women Should Stop Wearing After Age 30” Right out of the gate, I was fired up at #24 Graphic Tees because I didn’t get to wear them under the age of 30.
During my Wonder Years, printed t-shirts of any kind were banned from our wardrobes. It started one evening when all hell broke loose because the cute but trampy babysitter showed up in her Daisy Dukes and “69” football sweatshirt. A nosy neighbor saw “Misty” enter our home and instantly called the hotline to tip Bev off about the subliminal meaning of the number. The fun babysitter was never again gainfully employed by my parents, a decision that also sequestered me from my Yardley of London make-up coach. (See #22 Blue Eyeshadow)
That was not the end of the story. In order to ensure that no further covert symbolism sneak past the warden, all screen printing was banished. One would think that as a grown-up I’d be free to wear the branding of my choice, but that was certainly not the case. No matter what my age, printed contraband launched Mom into the icy death stare, rendering her incapable of engaging in reasonable conversation. All joking aside, I loved my Mom and therefore refrained from a jersey lollapalooza until she died.
With full knowledge of my screen-printing deprivation, friend Sondra smuggled a Batman t-shirt into my wardrobe shortly after Mom’s passing. I was giddy with excitement, Batgirl that I am, but to my surprise public debut was met with a startling response. My BFF Kim boldly confessed, “What bothers me about that shirt on you?” This reaction certainly gives credence to the fact that mothers are well able to speak beyond the grave and that I bore some beacon light alerting the world as to what my classy Mom deemed a fashion faux pas.
The good news is precious little slows down a middle child, and I assessed that the problem was observers could sense my lack of experience in swagging the symbol of superpower. The solution was to expand my Bat-drobe and at the age of 58, Wal-Mart’s $17.99 fleece hoodie joined forces with the Target T.
It’s been a few years in the making, but I now rock The Dark Knight sweatshirt to and from the gym. It’s just plain comfy after a grueling workout and it also serves as a conversation starter when I make that drive-home pit stop at Trader Joe’s or Whole Foods. “Why Batman over Superman?” is the ice breaker, and on cue I launch into hilarious fresh produce section stand-up comedy. More than once I’ve scored an executive business card and a “Call me if you want to go out.” I’ve put so much thought into my obsession with the Caped Crusader that I have added The Batman vs. Superman Caregiver to my public speaking portfolio. Bottom line…Wally World zip-up just makes me happy.
You should know RantChic, that clothing life changes when you become a parent. #24 Graphic Tees abound. I do remember in my 20’s the tight and sexy “Kiss Me, I’m Irish” v-neck that was worn with #5 Cheap Bras, but when you are a mom you trade that in for the “Ryan’s Mom” baseball team fundraiser shirt. Sultry bows out as a men’s size large neon yellow boxy tee moves in because somebody’s dad got a good deal on a one-size-fits-all lot.
Fashion does matter to me, but in my 35-year span of being a mom I’ve skipped on the trends so my son could have the light-up tennis shoes. I passed on the latest jeans to pay the plastic surgeon after five-year-old Ryan swung like Tarzan on the shower curtain into the tile wall. And I just said ‘no’ to that new eye-shadow because I spent my wad at the Mac Counter so my junior high daughter could feel beautiful in a world that often says otherwise. One thing I never passed on was wearing my Mother’s Day Fruit Loops lacquered necklace. My eight-year-old son gave it to me with his million dollar smile and said, “I picked colors that will go with all your outfits!” I wore it so very often, without hesitation.
I publicly confess that I have violated Rantchic’s #17 Non Matching Socks and #6 Old Sneakers. My girl was in Hospice at home, but wanted new Adidas. The purchase was against all sound reason and my financial budget; my girl was all but paralyzed from spinal tumors. Nevertheless, a pair of running shoes were a symbol of hope that she might run again. I bought them. Megan never wore them. After her death I lovingly saved them, untouched in the original box. Seven years later I pulled them out of hiding for my first workout with nutrition and life coach Matt Jackson. I had spent that morning in front of my make-up magnet mirror that has #4 Glitter Eye Shadow and #22 Blue Eye shadow adhered to it telling my tubby self “You got this…You can do it!” It was ‘get busy living or get busy dying.’ Choking back tears, I laced them up thinking, “I’m going to run in my daughter’s shoes and fully live a life she never had.” Time stood still when Megan died, and I didn’t realize the style was outdated and the trends had changed. Like all moms, fashion is a decision often made with the heart and not the RantChic handbook.
Thankfully, it doesn’t suck that my best friend is Mrs. Continents 2016, a beautiful woman close in age to my daughter. She stopped in for that fashion offending workout and by week’s end new Nikes and socks politely swooped into my wardrobe. The Adidas and their sad little story scooted on over to the Goodwill.
In the last 10 months I’ve lost 45 lost lbs. and gained the figure and the freedom to wear whatever the heck I want. I’m worried Rant Chic has confused #23 Bedazzled with the very beautiful and classy Belldini, a brand that heavily populates my wardrobe owned by a man who may be the very reason I’m alive today. As for #12 Short Dresses and #11 mini skirts, my guess is you haven’t taken note of 78 year-old Tina Turner and her gorgeous gams. I have that same powerful physical attribute from my Mom; I got legs and I know how to use them. And the #20 Leopard print – Here’s the deal, Rant Chic. There was a day in my life that I had to drive to Von Maur Department Store and tell the sales clerk in better dresses that I needed a little black dress to wear to my daughter’s funeral and she didn’t want me dressing like Barbara Bush. It took me years to move away from the sorrow of that moment and a platoon of black clothes, so if I want to wallpaper myself with leopard, I will. Consider Poshmark swing coat from @janicegw on Poshmark.com. It’s a whole lot of #20 leopard print that I wear with my #12 Short Dresses and #23 Bedazzled Belldini leggings, but I’m stopped by women of all ages asking me “Where did you get that coat and where did you get those leggings?”.
Mrs. Continents Kim makes herself available to answer the “Is this cute?” text with photos. Sometimes recovering fashion moms just aren’t sure. But of this I’m absolute; My life has moved beyond a slew of restrictions and I have the great adventure of discovering myself beyond Mom-Style. Please applaud me in that. My daily workout wardrobe is now filled with #24 graphic tees designed by Marin in #23 Bedazzed glitter vinyl. I wear Joan Rivers Classic Collection #16 Hoop Earrings almost every day of the week, and I want to be buried in them as are we absolutely sure ‘you can’t take it with you.”? I want to approach Armageddon and eternity wearing #16 Hoop Earrings and Mary Kay Ultimate Black Mascara.
Taking fashion risks is the essence of individual personality. Good luck with those rules, Miss Kallie. Not sure they will serve you well into your 60’s. Nevertheless, wishing you the very best, Kallie Provencher – you’re a interesting and provocative writer. Thank you for enabling me to rant about something other than cancer.
Wildcat Leopard Print Wearer,
- Rantchic.com, please tell the capacity crowd of 90,000 at Memorial Stadium on game day that they must be under the age of 30 to wear #24 Husker Graphic Tees.
- My magnet makeup board includes Urban Decay Peace Blue. #5 Blue Eyeshadow. I never wear it, but it reminds me of where I came from and all the possibilities now available.
On A Lighter Note:
- You have been ticketed by the fashion police if your adult children say to you, “Do you still have the receipt?”
- That piece of wisdom is courtesy of my 27 year-old Rowing Coach, Trevor Fleming.
- Socks, universally, have never really adhered to the buddy system in the dryer. Ask any mom who matches them.
- Do we get our panties in a twist or a knot? I’ve had mine twist, and not sure how they can knot.
- I asked the boys at the gym for a trampy, fictitious girls name for the “69” babysitter. Chastity and Candy were on the list, but Misty was the winner, compliment of my trainer Matt Jackson.
- My daughter told me to never wear #4 Glitter Eye Shadow. I rushed out to buy Urban Decay Midnight Cowboy and have it on my magnet board. Sometimes a mom just has to jack with her kids. Don’t tell Mrs. Continents 2016!