It’s starting to sink in. I’m single. For some people that may sound like the kiss of death. For me, I’m starting to breathe for the first time. I’ve spent most of my adult life married or in relationships that were smothering me. I went from my parents home to my first marriage home. When I removed myself and my children from that situation I moved back in with my family. It was where we (me and my children) needed to be, surrounded by people who loved us. I bought my first home and moved there in 2009. I was single for the first time and made the decision to not date for a year minimum. I thought I would take the time and get to know myself. I didn’t. I at the end of the year through Facebook I found and married #2. It lasted 18 months. On the heel of that divorce I met #3. He was charming and waited out the post break up rebound and claimed me as his. I didn’t want to marry again but I did. He swept me off my feet and made me feel good about myself. What I didn’t see, was he was obsessed with me. He loved controlling me. It’s all good when you are on the same page. When you are so in love you can easily turn a blind eye to the obvious. I certainly did.
So, moving on, I am seeing that I have an opportunity now to reframe my life. As a three-time loser in the marriage arena I am not looking for a date or even thinking along those lines. I still love men. Don’t get me wrong, as Dorothy said in Jerry Macguire, “Maybe,Men are the enemy but I still love the enemy.” I’m just not up for the battle right now. I am up for focusing on that “getting to know myself” thing. I have discovered finally at age 43 I actually like my own company. I like my down time, no TV, no mindless lying about sleeping the day away. I haven’t been spending my weekends alone wearing pjs and not brushing my teeth until Sunday. (Yes, I have done that. No, I’m not proud of it.) I am writing, reading, planning, and keeping up with my chores. Once upon a time I was organized, ok semi-organized. I lost that somewhere along the way, but I’m slowly getting it back.
There’s so many wonderful books out there from authors of blogs. I’ve read two books by life style blogger Jennifer Scott of the Daily Connoisseur. She embraces all things French and has written Lessons From Madame Chic. In it she shares stylish secrets she learned while living abroad in Paris while she was an exchange student in college. Madame Chic was the inspiration for these lessons which range from eating well, cultivating the arts, living with and using the best things we have instead of saving them for only special occasions. I have adopted some of the lessons including those on cultivating a capsule wardrobe. While the idea of a pared down closet didn’t appeal to me at first, the idea of actually having a few nice quality pieces of clothing did. I have always said I would rather have a few nice things than a bunch of junk but I have never followed through on it. The premise in the book is to have 10 core items in your seasonal wardrobe. These items can be supplemented with accessories, t-shirts, cardigans, blazers and shoes along with special occasion items. I couldn’t do just ten items. There are a few reasons why I couldn’t get it down to just 10, the main one boiled down to I’m not able to do laundry often enough to keep that minimal of a wardrobe clean and ready to go. Still, I am pretty pleased with my results. Here are the before and after pictures of my closet.
It was a mess.
I was so proud of the empty closet!
Finally…. the almost finished project. I am still working on storing shoes and purging accessories.