Wednesday, January 6, 2010

The Difference

I guess that I did make a couple resolutions for the new year. I didn't really think about them as resolutions, but something that I'd come to know, and begun to incorporate into my life. The fact is, I feel very different when I wear high heels and dangly earrings. Don't know why exactly, but I do. So I decided not to analyze it. What the hey...I've resolved to wear these things a little more often.

Now, since I haven't worn things like this in many, many years (too self conscious, afraid that people would think that I was trying to be 'all that', or attract attention to myself or something), this requires buying shoes for myself. I am a tightwad. Unemployed and frugal. I drop in to the Goodwill on a fair regular basis, checking to see what they've got. I hit it right today. I got two new pairs of expensive leather heels. I got a pair of leather clogs. A pair of jeans. A Braun hand mixer. A Clarion University sweatshirt (Cara's school). 'The American' by Henry James. Spent a whopping $7.52. I was darn pleased with myself, believe you me.

Anyhow, while I was waiting in line. I saw a small woman, poorly dressed, white shoelaces in her black boots. She had a pinched face, and her gaze stayed down. She met no one's eyes. She looked like a woman with a hard life, and I felt sorry for her straight away. Out of the blue, the thought came to me. What is the difference between her and I? I mean, really. I'm not a person who can throw money around either. Cancer crap. Unemployed. No education. I gathered my bags, and I left the store thinking hard about this one. What is the difference? And I did not know.

I stopped into Walmart. I still had to get Trevor his Christmas gift. He's been traveling, and there was no sense to send it before he arrived back home, so I had some time to think about this one. He's hard to buy for. I know that he is a stubborn luddite, and unhappy with most modern gadgets. I'd seen an interesting thing ~ a percolator. A 12 cup percolator. The cool thing about it is that it had no buttons. Nothing. Just plug it in, and it would brew your coffee. I knew that his coffee pot had broken some time ago. Even though Cara had specifically recommended not buying the coffee pot, for her grandfather, I couldn't think of anything else. So I stopped in to the Walmart to by this very retro coffee pot at the very unretro price of $43.

As I was striding through the store with my earrings swinging and my high heels tapping, I saw an acquaintance, one that I'd not seen for a while. Allan's head turned, and he did a double take. "Man," he said, "you're looking great! How are you?" and we visited briefly. "I'm good," I said. "It's really is all about learning to deal with the head games. I made up my mind, and really, I think that I'm good." And he nodded his ponytailed head, smiling. "You really look great," he repeated. He's probably the most sincere person that I've ever met in my life, very zen, so you know, because Allan said it, I believed it, and I walked away thinking, "Wow. These high heels and earrings really, really work..." laughing to myself a little bit.

By the time that I got to the car, I'd figured it out. Me and the woman in Goodwill are probably not all that different, not at all, at least not as far as our circumstances. What is different is that our attitudes. Life sometimes kicks my ass, but it has never beat me so far down that I can't get back up. I get discouraged sometimes, but it's not a permanent thing. Never. Some people, well...I guess that life defeats them. Life wins. They become the losers. It's another head game, just like I told Allan. By the time I was putting my stuff in the car, suddenly, I was very glad to be me.


quid said...

Outlook on life. Makes a vast difference.


Anonymous said...

None of us knows the journey another person has had do we, although we should all be born equal? It is such a blessing when we can really help ourselves to realise it isn't it?

Lucky you being able to wear high heels too! Good for you Deb.My feet swear at me these days if I do. Wish I could though at 5'2". Tall people don't know how lucky they are.

Keep on enjoying it Love Barb

Karen said...

Amen to your post. Most times, we can't change our circumstances, only the way we react to them. Blessings to you this new year! :)

Mrs. Spit said...

I am a huge, HUGE fan of the idea that how we dress influences not only how others treat us, but how we feel about ourselves. About 6 years ago I decided that I would start dressing nicely, and wearing light make up to work. Suddenly I was treated with respect and listened to.

When those things happened, I had more confidence and realized that I had something to contribute. It's a cycle that builds on itself.

Glad you've discovered.

Shoes are one thing I don't scrimp on. I buy very good heels, paying upwards of 200 for them, but they last for 5 years, and my feet down't hurt. Worth it to me.

Kelly said...

No substitute for good ole "positive thinking"!

Lydia said...

Amen, Sister. That is the absolute truth. Hope and Faith are wonderful things, and you have them both.

OK, now here is the request from a beleaguered South Dakotan who has apartment buildings with heat problems and -12 degrees just around the corner.

Would you be willing to brighten our day with a photo of your hot self? lol


Debby said...

Hot stuff?!!!!!! Oh, Lydia. Bwahhahhahahahhahaha!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Lori said...

Reading your entries always makes my day!
You know another difference between you and that lady could be family and/or friends -- you have a close support net and perhaps she has no one who is "on her side".