Day Four: Dolled Up
Even before Cory and I got engaged, my mom kept insisting that he and I already acted like we were married. Contributing to this hypothesis was the fact that we started a daily routine: I get off work, I go work out, I go over to Cory’s apartment, I eat something, I shower, we talk and watch TV, we end the day.
But the devil, as they say, is in the details.
I get off work (usually wearing a dress and makeup and with my hair down), I go work out (with no makeup, wearing shorts/compression pants, tank top/T-shirt, tennis shoes, stretchy neutral-colored headband and a barrette to fasten stray hairs of my ponytail in place), I go over to Cory’s apartment (sweaty, stinky and haggard, wearing sweatpants and an oversized sweatshirt over my workout clothes), I eat something, I shower (and put on sweatpants and a T-shirt with my hair up in a towel), we talk and watch TV (for one to two hours), we end the day.
Cory affectionately refers to the state in which he most often sees me as “ratty Monica” (some of you are recoiling at that line, wondering how I could marry a man who says such things about my appearance, but trust me, that’s just the way we communicate, and I can dish it out just as easily; we’re a unique couple). He sometimes comments that everyone at work gets to see me every day in a dress and all dolled up, but he rarely gets that opportunity.
I don’t think this has anything to do with a “slump” or becoming so comfortable with each other that I don’t feel like trying. So today’s Alphabet Series segment is about a characteristic of singlehood eking over into relationship/married life: getting dolled up.
I’ve always dressed appropriately for work – single or in a relationship, it didn’t matter – but when my work day was done, it was Monica Time, which meant either a run around the neighborhood or hair up and comfy clothes on in front of the TV with a jar of Nutella by my side. Or both. I’m all about balance.
But if I was going to a concert or out to dinner with friends, I got dolled up. Like I think is the norm for single young women, I had visions of looking fine, just sitting at dinner chatting with friends, and a gorgeous stranger locking eyes with me, striding over and inviting me to dance, even if we were at the Buffalo Wild Wings where there is neither a dance floor nor music. Somehow, I believed that the perfect combination of eye shadow would turn my evening into the climax of a romantic comedy.
Cory and I still go out to dinner, usually on a Friday or a Saturday, or to concerts, and I like to look nice for those occasions. Seldom, however, do I have the time between work and our planned event to shower, dry my hair, get dressed and reapply makeup, so I usually roll with the remnants of my workday attire, plus a fresh application of deodorant. When I was single, I may – MAY – have tried to squeeze in the time to gussy up, but now if I don’t have the time, I don’t fret. Which I guess isn’t much different from B.C. (Before Cory).
When Cory met me, we were sitting under a tent on the asphalt by a shiny airstream trailer, on a June day when the heat index was probably 100 degrees. My curly hair was wilting, my makeup had melted off, sweat plastered my red dress to my skin and my eyeliner was giving me the Raccoon Look. I wasn’t dolled up, but he still liked me.
All that said, I still enjoy getting dressed up and going out. There may not be a stranger whisking me around on a dance floor, but there’s someone sitting across from me who won’t judge my mountain of fried rice from the Asian buffet and says I look nice in a pink T-shirt and jeans. And that’s so much better.