What Does It Matter Anyway?
This past Saturday, we went to a funeral at the Roman Catholic cathedral in Indianapolis. One of Harold’s former associate pastors died and Harold wanted to attend the service. Since Harold had returned on Wednesday from 20 days in skilled nursing care with the use of a walker and transport chair; the decision to attend the event caused me some trepidation and a very sweaty brow.
But we managed it with the help of an overnight downtown Indy stay and the awesome resources of the Archdiocese who made getting in and out of the cathedral and into our car easily attainable. And the old-fashioned Irish funeral reception made the entire episode well worth the extended effort it took to make it happen!
I share this slice-of-life vignette to set the stage for what I unashamedly share in this post.
Here’s the back story: I wore slacks that had some age on them and a sweatshirt with the logo and vision statement of a local organization. I needed to be comfy driving and managing a 200+ pound man with a walker and transport chair. But I packed a new pair of dress slacks, a colorful light weight top and new sweater vest. I was ready to be dressed for the occasion.
Come early Saturday morning and the preparations needed to get us going a few blocks up the street; the following sensible thoughts occurred to me:
- no one really knows me. . .
- does anyone care how I’m dressed, and if they do, does it matter. . .
- do I care what others think of my “Voices” logo sweatshirt (after all, it’s clean). . .
- is a funeral a place to get all gussied up in the 1st place?. . .
So the new slacks, colorful lightweight top and sweater vest stayed in the satchel while I consoled myself that it doesn’t really matter what I wear as long as it’s clean, comfortable and appropriate for attendance at a funeral.
One of the Joys of Vintage Years. . .
As we drove home later in the day, I thought about how I would never have dressed-down for anything at the cathedral in years past. I thanked God that at this point in life, I don’t have to bother myself with pantyhose, heels, girdles and all that accompanies youth and youthful concerns about matters of dress and other folks thoughts about the same. . . thoughts about how I’m dressed that is.
I delighted in the knowledge that with vintage comes realistic appraisal of what’s really important in life. Important in the sense of the grand scheme of things!
In other words, when I look at life in general and what’s really important; what I wear is somewhere near the back rack and almost not on any day’s radar. Neither are a whole slew of other items once thought to be important.
Take Makeup for Instance. . .
One of my vintage life joys is that I have no fear of stepping out in public without a stitch of makeup. When I want to get “all dolled up” (my Dad’s expression when Mother got ready for an evening out); I put a bit of concealer on the dark circles under my eyes that reveal I’m a vintage woman. A dash of blush on the cheeks; a brush of eye shadow and mascara which transforms me into a vintage femme fatale.
Most of the time I don’t take the time for such an extravagant operation. I just grab the lipstick and go!
There’s something freeing about not having to put on a made up face. Actually the freedom is in not being disturbed about others seeing the ‘real’ me; without blush, concealer or mascara.
I am who I am and I’m not young in body anymore; so why pretend I am while denying the fact that the rest of my world knows I’m not!
Late-In-Life Confessions Free the Soul. . .
It’s true. The more vintage we become, the more ‘baggage’ we are willing (and glad) to shed. What others think of us is no longer as important as once it was. And saying so is helpful. In fact, making vintage confessions a regular part of our lives frees our souls for the really important stuff. Like health and wellness – of self and those we love. Each day is a gift and for once in our lives we realize it’s so.
It has been said, “when I grow old I will wear purple and a red hat!“ Here’s my take on becoming a vintage dame. . .
- When I am vintage, I will let the natural beauty of slightly wrinkled skin be the face with which I face the world,
- When I am vintage, I will wear a bra only when it is contemporarily courteous to do so,
- When I am vintage, I will march to the beat of my own drum regardless of how slow the march may be,
- When I am vintage, I will say naughty words and make no apologies for doing so,
- When I am vintage, I will decide what is important in life, regardless of what others think of me for doing so,
- When I am vintage, I will determine what is the courteous thing to do in any and all situations. Others may think differently but that is there problem ~ not mine!
- When I am vintage, I will wear what I darn well please and if you don’t like it, stuff it!
- When I am vintage, I will say a prayer of gratitude each night as I fall asleep and rejoice in the Lord as the morning light breaks the dawn. . .
Now, what will you do when you become a vintage dame?
Linda S. Fitzgerald, M.S.Ed, CEO & Visionary Partner
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