Behold THE shoe.
I spent a total of 10 hours over 3 days shopping for the perfect shoe to wear to my cousin’s wedding that would complement my vivid blue dress. (There is a whole saga surrounding the acquisition of that dress that I won’t delve into here. Suffice it to say that it encompassed 15 hours, 3 stores, many tears, group texts, despair, perseverance, redemption, 4 purchased dresses and 2 returns, before finding my perfect dress, as well as a bonus dress just because a gal can never have too many dresses. Hollywood material, right there.)
I then spent a couple of hours hunting for the right accessories to go with a blue dress and red shoes. Red purses are not pervasive fashion staples, surprisingly. Anyhow, the day before the wedding, I had finally accumulated all the bits and pieces required to look FANTASTIC at the wedding. Every detail would be perfect.
Every detail WAS perfect. I looked amazing. The dress was the right mix of sexy, unique, unexpected and questionably appropriate for a civil wedding. Following the upload of pictures onto Facebook, the universal response was that I looked fabulous. My response alternates between “thank you” and “I know, right?”
That sounds vain. Because it is vain. I will hold onto my vanity with a death grip. It is my psychological protection against the gnawing pit of doubt and fear of my perpetual single state, and advanced years.
I have 4 weddings this summer/fall. 5, if you count the civil one today that I am not going to. I’ve been invited to a total of 9 weddings in 2015. Barring my young cousin, all these weddings are for friends in my age group (early 30s), some of whom are my besties. I am happy for my friends, I am. I have never been to a wedding without crying from the sheer beauty of the vows being made. It’s a wonderful thing when two people are willing to make that kind of commitment publicly, to be witnessed by their friends and family. I am delighted for every couple that is lucky enough to reach that stage.
Nevertheless, I can’t help but compare the state of my friends’ lives with my own. For all my endless rants and jokes about the failures of the male species to interact with the opposite gender, I can’t deny that my own baggage, insecurities and anxiety play a big role in keeping me in a single state. I am working through my issues diligently (and expensively – a good therapist ain’t cheap!) but man, is this ever slow-going. This leads to a feeling of shame for being the root cause of my own unsatisfactory life. While I struggle to keep these negative thoughts under control, I find it especially hard when faced with back-to-back celebrations of others’ happiness. Especially when I haven’t been on a real (not Tinder) date in over a year – I literally have not met anyone that is a dating prospect; I haven’t even met many non-dating prospects. My world is surprisingly small. Panicky doubts frequently bubble up, as I ask myself “what I am I doing wrong?!”
Well. I might ask myself that question, but I will be damned if anyone else has the right to ask it of me, or speculate behind my back. That is why, ladies and gents, I make sure to look absolutely spectacular at every wedding I attend, so that no one looking at me will ever assume that my single state is my own fault. They will see what I wish to project: a beautiful, happy, outgoing and charming woman.
I am vain, because I know exactly how hard it is for me to successfully achieve that image. I enjoy every minute that I play that role. Escapism is a thing. A fun thing. Especially when it involves sexy, fierce shoes.