take one woman with low self esteem, but quite good hair
add one moronic illness
stir in some medication which causes hair to fall out
mix it all up and this is what you get...

Monday, December 31, 2007

How a wardrobe made me cry 

It wasn't the wardrobe's fault, of course. It was just minding its own business, being wardrobey, having hanging space and sliding, mirrored doors.

It had previously belonged to our mutual friend, J. It had come as part of the fixtures and fittings of his flat when he'd bought it and had served him well over the years. Knowing that J was attempting to sell the flat, I wondered (out loud, over lunch with S and J) what would happen to the wardrobe, whilst mind-eyeing that empty space in our own enormous bedroom where my open hanging rail stood rather pathetically, straining under the weight of the too-many-clothes.

"Oh, I'll have to get rid of it," he sighed. Since he and S had got together, combining two households into one, they had struggled to accommodate the excess of possessions.

"Well, maybe we could take it off your hands!" I beamed.

"You're welcome to it! But it'll be up to you to dismantle it and get it out of the flat..."

It seemed like a fair deal, so last Friday, we rolled up in our hired van and loaded it with the bits of melamine-faced chipboard and the little bag of screws which had once been - and would hopefully be once more - a wardrobe.

It was, I realised once it had been put together (not without some chin-scratching, swearing and threats of violence), my first, proper wardrobe as an adult. Prior to that, in my singleton existence, I had made do with open hanging rails. Later, I had combined these with borrowed spaces in Big's childhood wardrobes which seemed to accompany him to every new home out of his innate sense of "if-it-ain't-broke"-ness, but regardless of their distinct lack of aesthetics and very much to my chagrin.

As I screwed the bulbs into place (the sort of bulbs that go in a fridge and light up when the wardrobe doors are opened), I felt all growed up, though only in the wardrobe sense, of course.

But, o mirrored doors, why must you taunt me with that reflection as I approach in my undressed state? The reflection with its short hair and excess kilos that remind me of what happened this year.

Why must your little bulbs light up my clothes? The clothes which no longer fit me properly as a result of what happened this year.

The body I'd respected, taken care of and even grown to like a little - after this year, I can no longer trust it to be well, I can no longer stand the sight of it.

So, wardrobe, if I approach you with my head bowed, if I seem to spend a long time contemplating, choosing, rejecting outfits, if a tear starts to roll down my cheek as I replace another ill-fitting garment inside you, you should now know why. It's not your fault, really.

But I don't think it's mine either.

Roll on 2008. Surely, you can only be better...

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