Ever slip out of the house on sunday morning in baggy sweats, bra-less, a paint-stained T, sleep wrinkles on your face and your hair a mess just to grab a quick cup of coffee? Standing in line behind you is your husband’s (or wife’s) boss, in front of you is the hot guy from work, and running the register is your teenage son’s friend. At the ATM machine stands that condescending PTA bitch, dressed in her “7” jeans, a crisp clean T and the cutest little flats you’ve ever seen. Her hair is in a neat ponytail and her face is fresh and perfect.
You quickly take note of your appearance, run a finger across your un-brushed teeth, wipe the sleep booger from your eye, and cross you arms over the ketchup stain on your shirt. Then you pray none of them notice who you are. You feel less, lower, a mess.
WTF! What were you thinking? Impressions are important, no matter if they are the first or the thirty-first! Aren’t they? Well, let’s debate.
On first impression, what would you think of these people? Would you hire them to work for you? Would you tend to respect their opinions? Would you think they were intellegent? Worth getting to know? More importantly, if you sneak out of the house, looking like crap, how do YOU feel about yourself?
Now these photos are a little over the top, but visual impressions are important. Not so much to the people we meet, but more importantly, to ourselves, to our self-esteem. Of course, this doesn’t mean we have to dress to the hilt and become a movie star every time we leave the house, but don’t you feel better, more confident, more approachable when you look better?
I know I do. Many days I get up and rejoice that it’s a sweat-pant-no-bra day, and almost always, I regret it. Someone stops by, or I have to run out, and I get caught with my ‘pants down.’ I feel gross, sloppy, and unworthy. My confidence goes into hiding, and my self-esteem gets knicked.
So, I suppose my question would be (in Misty’s words) How vain is too vain?
A few posts back, I bitched about the media and their influence on external beauty. I’m 49 today, and my dear mother pulled some pictures out of me when I was 25. Ughhhh! was my first thought. My forehead is all wrinkled now, when once it was smooth. I have ‘jowels’ where once I had cheekbones, and these horrible lines stripe my top lip! Everything is going south! I don’t like it. I feel self concious…and it’s only going to get worse.
Should I consider plastic surgery? Should anyone? Is this vain, self-centered?
I have to confess, I have had plastic surgery. A year ago. It changed my life. I had an abdominoplasty, aka. tummy tuck. I’m a normal-size gal (10-12), but from birthing two 12lb babies by c-section, I had this obnoxious pouch that never went away. Dr. Glassman did my surgery, awesome man. His words to me during my consultation? “I’ve never seen anything like that!” Now imagine my embarrassment and my elation.
My embarrassment: because he also did Kate-Plus-Eight’s tummy tuck so I’m assuming my pouch was worse than hers after eight babies? My elation: I wasn’t just copping out or taking the easy way out. I had done all the exercise and eating right that I could, but this pouch was never going away on its own, according to him.
Before my surgery, I was self-concious, my clothes always looked sloppy, and I refrained from ever doing anything that required a bathing suit. All my clothes had to be baggy and oversized to hide my ‘fupa'(mature rating ahead: fat-upper-pussy-area, yes…it’s a real slang name for the stuff). I felt sloppy and dumpy everyday. My family suffered from my insecurity about my body because I didn’t participate in a lot of things an active family does. Money was an issue, but I took on a part time job for a year to save up.
Was I too vain? I don’t think so. I stuggled for a long time with my decision, but I believe feeling better about yourself does wonders for your outlook on life and for your relationships. I’m a better person now. Sad to say, it was an external thing that held me back.
Do I still think the media sucks when it comes to beauty image and young girls? You’re damn right! They are unrealistic and relentless in their expectations. Do I think it’s wrong to take pride in how you look? No way!
Will I get the Lifestyle Lift someday so I don’t start looking like a bassethound? Maybe. I’m feeling old and worn out. I don’t want to look different or beautiful or like Angelina Jolie. But I do want to feel good about my first impression and my thirty-first impression. I want to feel good about myself, inside and out.
In the words of Katy Perry ‘Baby you’re a firework, come and let your colors burn.’ …inside and out.
Am I wrong? When is plastic surgery okay? When is it too vain?
I’d love to hear your opinions.