I never wear white after Labor Day. It’s a thing that has followed me from childhood. Not sure who wrote this into official fashion law, but as a good, southern girl who cared (too much) about what others thought of me, well, I followed the rules. Sure, there was the semi-alternative “I want to be Molly Ringwald” phase that rounded out my college experience but by the time my early to mid-twenties rolled around, I wore a most professional personae to match my Casual Corner “Dress for Success” wardrobe.
Then somewhere on into my 30’s, I lost the rule book. While most of my old friends were dealing with potty training and pot luck dinner clubs, I was on a different path partly by choice and partly by happenstance. Nevertheless, it was a time in my life where I explored the person I was both professionally and personally and began to get a clearer sense of the person I wanted to become as well as the person I did not want to be. It was an often unpredictable and exciting ride. For the most part, it was a series of hits and misses and a few course corrections. I made some good decisions. I made some poor decisions and they all bounced off each other like bumper cars.
Some years ago, I recall hearing a statement attributed to George W. Bush about feeling like he didn’t reach adulthood until around the age of 40. To some extent, I felt similarly, although for me it was not about reaching a specific age per se, but more about reaching the milestone of motherhood, which I did just nine months and one week after marrying my husband whom I met through (surprise!) Match.com which in 2002 was anything but mainstream.
Fast forward to ten years later. On most days that pendulum of life can be found balanced in all of the predictable and yes, conventional spaces that go along with an 11 year marriage and a 10 year old son. Life is not as exciting as it was a decade ago. But it is more grounded, more authentic and certainly more meaningful. The ride in the dark thrill ride has been replaced with a carousel that becomes more nostalgic and endearing with each passing year. And if you look closely, you realize that while the carousel does keep turning around and around and around, the scenery seldom stays the same. That’s enough excitement for me.