an alternative to ennui
I’m going through a phase. I know it’s a phase because I’ve been in this head space before. My tastes are changing. I’ve been dressing with purpose and listening to particular music. What should I call it. This is rhetorical; no need for a question mark. How about… Grandma Grunge. Haha, I definitely like that.
My brother and I decided to label our fashion styles and that’s how Grandma Grunge was born. In high school, I prided myself on confusing stereotypes within my wardrobe. I’d wear something like black army boots, skinny black jeans, and an argyle sweater. Or my baggy KISS t-shirt dress, flare blue jeans, and Converse. I like black. Black something with a coloured something. I guess I was going for a punk(ish) look. I clearly didn’t pull it off.
I started thrifting when I was in high school too. I thought it was cool and frankly, I couldn’t afford (nor did I want to pay) for the clothing sold at regular retailers. I wanted pieces nobody else had. I wanted old, moth eaten sweaters that would make me look like a spider – boxy on top with long, thin limbs. Or, not as thin as I had thought.
I was on the pill for acne. It helped. Sort of. I no longer had a sea of little bumps across my forehead, albeit I’d get an occasional HUGE puss-popping pimple right between my eyebrows. My friends warned me that I may put on some weight, but I never found that to be the case. When I was swimming competitively, I weighed about 127 lbs. Once I stopped and stopped exercising all together, I dropped to about 123-125 lbs. I thought I looked good. I’d compare my flat stomach to other girls’ little poochy bellies and feel great about myself. But, then again, I had linebacker shoulders and needed to go up up up a size in pants to compensate for my big hips. Needless to say, throughout the majority of my high school and University experience, I thought that that was how my body was. Done. No changing. Hammered into that shape. Forever. But, October 2013, I went off the pill I had been on for nearly five years and simultaneously experienced quite a bit of anxiety. My eating habits changed and for nearly a week, I lived exclusively off fluids. I dropped from a size six at American Eagle to a size two. People I hadn’t seen in years would tell me I lost quite a bit of weight. My friends asked if I was anorexic. I’m not, I promise. I ate a whole bag of chips last night and I still look and feel the same. I don’t exercise. I don’t watch what I eat. This is clearly me, me off estrogen fuelled drugs.
So my body is a balloon – coming down from its helium high. Slowly, slowly deflating. There are days when that hole is taped shut. I’m a good weight. Any more and I’ll be too thin. But, there’s something obsessive about numbers. 115 is a nice number. 116 isn’t. 110 is even better. So, I quietly peel the tape off and watch as more helium escapes from the balloon. Eventually, it will go limp and be thrown away.
This metaphor is making me scared.
I still like my old lady blouses and black skinny jeans. I like my hipster glasses and my hipster bangs and my grungy boots and my grungy plaid shirts. I like Pop Punk and Alternative. I’m thinking about dying my hair pink again. Or blue this time. But, I also like my blazers and blue jeans. My blonde hair. My hemp bracelets. My crochet purse. My overalls. My Superman boxers. My black mascara. Indie. Rock. New Wave. Metal.
I’m going through a phase. I know it’s a phase because I’ve been in this head space before. My tastes are changing. I’ve been dressing with purpose and listening to particular music. What should I call it. This is rhetorical; no need for a question mark…
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