My grandma. So sweet and helpful. If you ever wore a necklace in her presence and the clasp slid around toward the front, she was your girl.
“Oh here, honey, let me help you. Your hoopie’s showing.”
I naturally learned from an early age how hoopies should be on the back of my neck and only the back. Letting them rotate to the front looked unkept/disheveled.
I also learned wrinkled clothing was a no-no. From t-shirts and jeans to knickers and parachute pants, everything qualified.
Does this give you hives?
Let’s be clear though: I’m still a fan of ironed clothes if I’m going somewhere that demands a grown-up look, but less time with a tippy, squeaky board and a scalding metal plate is fine by me.
A huge portion of younger generations refuses to put the emphasis on outward appearance as much as the people of the ’80s did. Refreshing, right?
Exhibit A: We went to a party recently and my friend’s 10-year-old didn’t know what an iron was.
People of the older variety might shake their heads in disgust, but younger ones might applaud the fact that today’s clothing includes wrinkle-free options and a more casual look. One less chore? I’m in.
A few years ago our oldest tween started revolting against doing dishes. With no dishwasher and no earbuds yet, boredom set in. Plus he got tired of hearing his mother chide, “Can you please be a little more careful with the glass stuff?”
So he switched to ironing. Dad’s work clothes, school uniforms, mom’s whatever. And just like in 1996, if I saw missed wrinkles, I caught myself caring about what others might think.
It’s not just clothing though. I don’t own much cool jewelry, I’m usually about eleven months behind the latest tank top trends, and I still can’t figure out why I need eight different makeup brushes.
I’m fairly rebellious by nature, so I only use two.
Depending on the event, I don suede booties, bright kicks, or fun flip-flops. But confidence fades when I arrive.
Did I wear the right thing to the right place?
I thought I loved my shoes, but hers look so much better.
Is being underdressed or overdressed worse?
Leather cuff, bare chest or dangly earrings?
Does it matter?
If you want people to know you’re not stuck in the ’90s it does!
Oh, holy night… what if my friends turn me in to “What Not to Wear” and I get chosen?!
I never felt this way in our dinky, dirt-road, poor town of Baja, but up here in the States I can become so preoccupied with how I’m fitting in based on the vibe I’m putting out.
Really though? I’m a stay-at-home mom in my early 40s with a writing dream. My hair usually gets pulled back in an awkward direction, my clothes are beyond comfortable and therefore unworthy of certain establishments, I wear a back brace vest, and I sit on a therapeutic pillow with a hole for my tailbone, typing, typing, typing.
If I’m putting out any vibe at all, it looks more like a shout out to all the middle-aged P.E. teachers at junior colleges.
So, yeah. My hoopie’s showing. And my face breaks out when I eat sugar, my belly pooches, and my scalp is naturally greasy. Big whoop. Our society as a whole works so dang hard to pretend everybody’s smooth, organized, taut and tan.
Photo by Maura Silva on Unsplash
Sounded good when I was 23. Then my heels cracked, my pits started sagging, I lost my new lip gloss and I got a skin cancer spot on my face. Super attractive.
Can you imagine if we all sat in a circle and exhaled our insecurities? Might get sketchy for a few minutes, but I’m guessing the freedom that would follow might refresh even the most anxious among us.
In the same fashion, if my faith gets tucked in, wrapped in Spanx and told to hold its breath, what kind of an example am I portraying?
“I’m not really into sharing.”
“My faith is kinda personal.”
“Witnessing isn’t my jam.”
Riiight. That’s probably why Jesus left his name tag at home when he went out in public.
People Magazine Never Called
Did you know Jesus was considered physically unattractive?
He sprouted up like a twig before God, like a root out of parched soil;
he had no stately form or majesty that might catch our attention,
no special appearance that we should want to follow him.
Isaiah 53:2 (NET)
He would have never been elected to grace the cover of anything. The 32 A.D. Most Handsome Man in the World? Nope.
So why did countless people want to follow him?
There was nothing attractive about him. Nothing to cause anyone to take a second look. But His ministry? Impact? Legacy? Unparalleled.
The next time your hoopie’s showing, please remember your true friends. They like you for who you are, not for where your clasp lands on your clavicle.
And if your clothing harbors wrinkles, remember you have choices, but they don’t have to be your grandma’s.
Run those threads through the dryer again with ice cubes, wear them boldly, spray them with some magical chemical, or bring ‘em on over to Micah.
He’ll steam the heck out of your cotton whatevers. Bring your own hangars and the peso price drops dramatically.
Is your hoopie showing? Are you okay with that? For those of us with short hair, it’s always showing!