I’m In Chains: The Dress That Has Come to Represent My Early-Mid 20s
When I first saw this dress, my first thought was, “OOOOOooooOOOOOoooo. So many colors…” Like most days, I was checking out Nasty Gal (don’t worry — I’m almost always just checking) when I stumbled across this funky number by Lazy Oaf. The colors, the bold chain print, and the form-fitting, figure-flattering, flirty, feminine cut were enough for me to click on the picture for a close-up. What did me in, however, were the “Lazy” tags that were part of the print. This dress reminded me of what life had been for me up until now: I had been chained by what many had perceived to be laziness, but what I knew was actually fear of failing miserably.
I recently came to the realization that anxiety over the prospect of failure is not my only problem, nor is it my biggest problem. My greatest issue is fear of commitment. I’ve come to understand that, like many people, I am not a talentless loser who fails at everything. Rather, I actually have many talents and, if anything, I’m overwhelmed by opportunities for tremendous success. However, being that I’m afraid of commitment, I’ve shied away from many opportunities for success precisely because of the presumed commitment to continued good work in that particular area in which I would have realized success. In a nutshell, if I decide to pursue taxation and I become successful in that field, I am afraid that I will be locked into that field forever without any way out.
You must understand that this realization is a huge step forward for me. Not only have I accepted my real shortcomings, but I’m beginning to accept my talents. Let me tell you, it’s been extremely liberating and empowering to finally look at myself in the mirror and see the reflection of someone capable, rather than someone who constantly fails. I’m finally freeing my true self from my old, toxic self-loathing self. I’m sawing off the rusted chains and shackles that have kept me from soaring into space! Needless to say, I bought the dress, and am thrilled that I did.
Anyway, I wore this last Saturday night under the faux fur vest my brother gave me. I wore it with some of my mom’s jewelry from the 70s: a colorful silver scarab on a silver chain, and the “shield” ring with her first initial on it. I also wore a silver coil bracelet with brass balls threaded through it that was given to me by a family friend eons ago (pictured above).
I mustn’t forget my favorite earrings! I had purchased these a few years ago at some thrift store on Orchard St. I had to haggle with this loaf of a man with Jerry curls for about ten minutes before reaching an acceptable price, but I got them. I love their whimsical design; the flourishes and the dangling “carrots” are so magical!
I think that I looked great. I did, however, make one major rookie mistake: I layered a form-fitting polyester dress over a Spanx slip over tights. My dress was riding up my thighs for most of the night. Also, my shoes kept on slipping off of my heels as I walked. Sigh. It turns out that wearing this dress is like wearing the chains that were keeping me from living my life until recently!