I keep buying dresses. But dresses aren’t for me.

Other women wear dresses like it’s no big deal, but it’s a huge deal for me. It used to be that way with hats, too, but I had a breakthrough with hats. So I’m good with hats but still stuck on dresses.

What differentiates people who wear dresses from people who don’t? I used to think it was a form of fashion superiority, a deep, probably genetic, confidence in one’s own taste and looks. Dress-wearers have a little voice that tells them, “If I wear this, I will look cute.”

What I hear is my own voice saying, “Why aren’t you like a normal person who can wear a dress without becoming a head case about it?” I don’t even get to the part about looking cute or not. To me, wearing a dress is a sign of fashion normalcy, fitting in, being more mainstream, less conscious, less concerned, more comfortable in my own skin.

I think the last phrase there is the truest and most telling. I think people who wear dresses are more comfortable in their own skin. I really do. I think yearning for a suit is evidence that I think I have something to hide.

Last year, I went to a relative’s wedding out of state. When I packed, I decided to take a single dress so when I got there I would have no choice but to wear the dress to the wedding. That or my jeans, not even my dress jeans.

So I pulled it off (not the dress, the feat) and wore the dress to the wedding. My arms ached for a jacket or a sweater or a shawl, anything to give me that suit-like security. People tried to talk to me but I just had to be about the business of wearing my dress; human discourse on top of that was just too much. As a consequence, I don’t remember much about the wedding except I lived through my nutty, little fashion angst.

This groundbreaking dress now hangs in my closet next to several others, never worn, feeling superior for making the cut and waiting for the next wedding.

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#62/100: 62nd in a series of 100 in 100