Then I realized if I want to get full time work, like the others in the office, I should get nicer clothes. Fix my hair. Wear high heels. Look more ‘professional’.
Nicer clothes, okay. I’ve done that. I have acquired some nicer blouses, rather than sleeveless pullovers and worn-out sweaters. I only wear jeans if they are nice jeans, like everyone else does.
But what about the rest? I’m not going to cut my hair, or color it. Or curl it. Or spend hours and hours with a blow dryer every day. My hair is clean and evenly trimmed. I don’t want a conformist haircut. I want me.
Besides, if I fix my hair, won’t I have to start wearing makeup? My eyes itch just thinking about it. Pantyhose? Forget it. I’ll wear tights when it’s cold, but not pantyhose. On principle, if not because of the discomfort.
It’s depressing for a minute to think I will never get a full time job unless I look like them. Why do I have to look like them? Not everyone dresses like that, and plenty of people succeed. In the past couple of days, I have watched a video of The Artists Formerly Known As Level 80 Elite Tauren Chieftain – look at all that hair!. I saw a large girl with bright blue hair and mismatched clothes at school. I heard Janis Joplin on the radio. There are lots of people who don’t fit what they’re “supposed” to look like, and still succeed. Okay, maybe they’re not working as office help, but the principle is the same. I think the whole point behind this is not so much to be yourself. I’ve heard that enough.
The point is NOT to apologize.
I’m not sure anyone told me that before. “Be yourself”, “follow your own path”, “chase your own dreams”, “march to your own drummer”. Yeah, I’ve heard all those. But, as usual, people tell you what to do but they never tell you how.
This is how.
I wish I could still wear high heels. I always loved them. If my toes would ever wake up, maybe I could again. I’ve worn makeup before, but it’s always seemed a pain and a lie. Put it on, wash it off. Disguise who you really are, because you are not acceptable. And I just don’t have the strength or the money to invest hours in hair care every single day. Especially not when the wind and the heat are going to have their way with my hair, no matter what I do. And the gray roots show more and more, no matter how often I dye it.
You don’t need to tell me: “Go ahead. Be yourself.” I will, anyway. I yam what I yam, regardless.
I just need to stop apologizing.