I have a Girls Trip to Chicago this week with my girlfriends from college and I am SO EXCITED!!!
We’ve been texting back and forth trying to plan fun things to do…spa day, shows, shopping, clubs.
I have been looking forward to this trip for MONTHS!!
But then today out of nowhere…I spiraled.
Now, let me just preface the rest of this story with the following information:
These are the girls I lived with in college and they are BEAUTIFUL. Like a we-could-go-to-the-bars-in-college-with-roughly-$1.47-in-our-pockets-and-still-have-a- wonderful-time-because-we-never-had-to-buy-our-own-drinks kind of smokin’ and I have always felt a little ‘girl next door’ beside them.
Now here’s my downward spiral…
I have NOTHING to wear.
Anyone who knows me knows I wear the same five or six t-shirts with jeans or joggers every single day.
WHAT AM I GOING TO WEAR IN CHICAGO???
I need to buy ALL NEW CLOTHES!
Where am I supposed to SHOP??? I’m too young for Mom Stores, aren’t I? But surely I can’t shop in the Juniors Section!!!
I DON’T EVEN UNDERSTAND FASHION!!!
You know why my jeans look like mom jeans?? Because I’m a chubby near-40-year-old MOM shoved into these jeans!!!
Why didn’t I stop eating bread a month ago??
And this HAIR! It’s at least six weeks overgrown and I’m pretty sure it’s not even a ‘style’?!
WHAT IS THE MATTER WITH ME??
Why can’t I pull it together???
I am so uncooooool!!!
I. CAN’T. GO!!!!!!
Whyyyyy do women do this??? Why do we worry so much about what other people think (especially other mom friends)? Why do we attempt to look like we have it all together? Why do we get so concerned about ‘looking right’ or ‘fitting in’? Why in the world are we always so self-critical? Why do we lend any headspace to worrying about silly things like a little tummy roll or WHAT TO WEAR????
Luckily, I am growing up (a little).
Luckily, I only allowed myself to be unreasonable for about two hours.
Luckily, I managed to GET A GRIP!!
And somewhere in the middle of my spiral I had an epiphany (or two).
Epiphany #1: The REAL truth is…college was more than 20 years ago and A LOT has happened over that time.
I got married and finished residency with about a million 30-hour overnight call shifts.
I birthed and nursed and raised five babies.
I visited my husband in drug rehab…twice.
We moved a total of six times including a move to a new state 1,000 miles away.
We’ve taken vacations and celebrated holidays and mourned the loss of pets and struggled financially and generally just LIVED this good, hard, ordinary life!!
My near-40-year-old body is SUPPOSED to look different from my 18-year-old-body!
Epiphany #2: The REAL truth is…my beautiful girlfriends for over 20 years love ME!
Not the memory of my once-perky breasts or smooth thighs…ME!
These are the women who celebrated my engagement and pulled my hair back when we celebrated a little too hard (hee,hee).
These are the women who stood with me on my wedding day and held my dress up so I could go pee.
These are the women who looked only slightly embarrassed as I attempted to get my first newborn to latch onto my exposed-to-the-world boob while they visited me in the hospital or sent me a Birth Day cake from afar.
These are the women who sat next to me on our friend’s patio the night my husband went to rehab because I just couldn’t stand to be alone.
These are the women who were first to find out about my third child because we wanted to have wine at dinner (what a lovely Target-bathroom-stall surprise!).
These are the women who celebrated surprise 30th (and now 40th) birthdays together.
These are the women I plan to meet for a Girls Trip EVERY SINGLE YEAR until we die!!!
These are my GIRLS…and they love ME!!
The REAL truth is I already fit in!!
So, you guys, here’s what I’m proposing.
What if we just show up??? What if we tossed aside that fear of not looking right or not fitting in or not wearing the right thing or not saying the right thing or not being cool and just SHOWED UP ANYWAY?? What if we stopped to really realize…really, truly believe…that the way we look is not the best thing any of us have to offer???
That’s what I’m going to do this weekend.
I’m going to pack up some clothes I feel comfortable in and JUST SHOW UP.
I’m going to be ME…saggy chest and beginnings-of-a-BIF and all.
I’m going to hug my girls and laugh and drink wine and sing karaoke and enjoy a nice long massage and relish in a few days away from my everyday madness.
We’re going to talk each other’s ears off about our husbands and kids and dogs and jobs and workout routines and recipes and anything else that crops up.
We’re going to reminisce about those years back in the day when we turned ALL the heads and managed to have a great time on $1.47.
I can’t wait, you guys.
I’m going to show up and be ME!!!
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