Well, since I finally made it home this weekend I got a chance to find a couple more 80’s pictures … including that one picture of me in a dress that reminded me of this one … the one I wore at the Addy Awards last weekend.
It’s actually quite funny, when you think of it. Because both dresses actually are a mod dress inspired from the 60’s fashion styles. And yet … here I am wearing one dress in the 80’s and another one, some 20 years later again. Amazing how fashion styles recycle.
Anyhoo … Pretty scary that I was only 14 years old in that picture. And I seriously can’t believe my parents let me out of the house in that dress. What’s even more “scandalous” (well, at least in my eyes), is that my Mom was the one that picked this dress out. Because looking back at this picture now … it’s a pretty sexy dress for a 14 year old to wear, don’t you think?
But I remember the occasion at which I wore this dress for, which was a family friend’s 18th Birthday/Cotillion. It was during the summer before starting high school and I remember feeling quite self-conscious in the outfit. Which is probably why I can recall how socially “awkward” I felt that night.
And I realized this past weekend how some things never change. Hubby & I had some time to spare before heading over to my in-law’s house to celebrate my nephew’s 13th birthday. So we headed to the local mall just to walk about. (It was such crappy weather all weekend long, that doing anything outside was useless …)
Anyway, as we were there I headed into the local Sep.hora to look at some body lotion that a co-worker recommended to moisturize skin, but not leave it all moist and clammy especially when in the midst of a hot flash*. Now, I’ve never been inside a Sep.hora before; the reason behind it pretty obvious to anyone who knows me. I’m just simply not into make-up and dressing up.
I mean, I’ll dress up … when the occasion calls for it, I clean up quite nicely … but on an everyday basis? I’m the type of gal that’s more comfortable in a pair of jeans and a tshirt. And coming from a company where we could wear jeans daily to a company that requires leadership to dress business casual every day … well, that’s been a challenge.
So getting back to Sep.hora, I figured that while I was there I’d get some lip gloss to moisturize my lips … and maybe add a little color to it. Except I couldn’t believe how many choices were out there and I simply became overwhelmed. I mean seriously … all I wanted was a “leeetle” plum-rose color to my lips and what I saw was 50 zillion different varieties of plum or raspberry. I ended up just walking out of there with nothing.
But going back to the “some things never change” bit … I’m just not a “girly” girl and I never had been. I was the girl that climbed trees and ran her bike through muddy trails. I was the same girl who loved walking through puddles at school (seriously … whenever it rained, there would be this huge puddle in the middle of the parking lot that I believe I named “Lake St. Vincent”). I was that pre-teen (or “tweenager,” as they’re now called) that still loved to stay up and watch the movies at slumber parties rather than play dress-up or put on make-up.
For that, I still believe it’s because I never had that consistent female “bond” with another girl … a sister, or a mentor that could coach me through some of those things. And I still believe it’s because I was that first-generation Filipino-American; my parents not quite familiar with what typical American things that pre-teens (or even teenagers) do.
I give my parents credit though. They did the best that they could do. And they, particularly my mom, did try to encourage me to do things that most teens might do (within reason, of course). One of them was signing me up for modeling classes after I turned 16. Now, I must be honest … this would have been something I would totally wanted to do at the age of 13 or 14. But by 16, my personality was such that doing anything that surrounded using your “looks” to get ahead with anything was something I was SO against. (Helloooo .… New Wave/Goth chick, here!) But I faithfully went; partly out of obligation, as my Mom shelled out a lot of money for these classes. And partly out of sheer curiosity. Because, the girls that were in my class … they were the antithesis of who I was.
And what did I learn from these classes? Posture (which still sucks), poise and grace (which doesn’t work with my two left feet), and that I look best in “Summer Colors” when it comes to clothes and makeup. I think that last thing is the only lasting impression from that class … because I realized recently (after years of simply wearing black and/or white) is that I do like to dress myself in those “Summer Colors.”
Not that it matters too much anymore … but sometimes I wonder how I come across to other people, looking the way that I do. Given that I tend to wear my hair pulled back in a ponytail (or even piggy tails … not. kidding. you.) and I am one for sacrificing fashion for comfort, I think people think that I’m young and immature. (Which I can be … ) But after talking to me for any length of time, these same people tend to realize that I am older and more mature than they originally thought. That I’m smart and intelligent. That I’m knowledgeable in certain areas. But that’s only after they get to know me. And probably after they see how much grey hair I actually have.
In any case, going into that Sep.hora brought me straight back to those days of self-consciousness. And back to such an awkward phase in my life.
But enough of looks and awkwardness and fashion and lack of make-up. Let’s talk about how much fun I had being back home this weekend. We celebrated my nephew’s 13th birthday on Saturday and I still cannot believe he’s officially a teenager now (well, really he’ll be one officially on the 12th …) by having dinner at a local restaurant and then heading over my in-laws afterwards for birthday cake. From the moment he saw us, my nephew didn’t want to leave our side. And as I know those moments are going to start to be few and far in between, I relished every moment of his closeness. I also got to see my niece for the first time since December and I can’t believe how much bigger she’s gotten. She’s now 6 months old and her personality has definitely started to develop. My favorite moment of that night was this following video.
This video was taken while my SIL and I were “video chatting” in iChat on our laptops. We were both in the dining room facing directly across from each other. And when my nephew sat down to chat with me, he took his baby sister with him who, of course, was fascinated by seeing me (and herself) on the computer screen. I wish we started recording it sooner, because the first few times were priceless … but this video is still awesome. She (and my nephew, of course) is such a cutie!!
And Sunday, I was supposed to meet up with a couple of grade school friends for brunch. Unfortunately, since the weather’s been sucking a$$ right now I think we’ve all come down with some sort of sinus thingy; one of my friends worse than myself and my other friend. It would have been great to see them both, as I haven’t seen them since … like, forever … but we’re going to reschedule for the end of this month when I should be back in town to help Hubby move.
Instead, Sunday was spent going for dim sum with my parents. It was nice to sit and talk with them; and I think I genuinely surprised them by making the time to see them during this weekend home. The truth is, I would have made the time anyway … I just didn’t have a chance to call them until I got into town.
And while at that restaurant, I ran into one of my best friends from Nursing School. He’s now working as a professor for a local University and we’ve recently caught up in Face.book. But nothing beats actually seeing him and hugging him in person. We managed to make plans to catch up next time he comes into my “neck of the woods.” Can’t wait for that.
And now … about 6 hours from now, I’ll be boarding the train back to the City. Another weekend home gone so quickly. This being the second time I’ve been back to Detroit since moving, I realize how much I miss parts of this area. I miss all the shops and the ability to jump in my car and find parking anywhere. I miss how much cheaper going out to eat and/or seeing movies are. I miss seeing Sabrina on a daily basis. But the thing I miss the most? Yep, my family.
But the good thing is … we’re never that far away by email or phone. And not even by physical distance.
* Nope, not having hot flashes so much anymore. But when walking the distance I do from the train to my office building every morning … I do tend to work up a sweat. It usually is worse whenever I take a shower in the morning (and therefore putting body lotion on at that time) … Anyway, I’m sure this was more information that y’all needed to know.