Has my whole life has been a lie?

Has my whole life has been a lie?

Column by Kay Frances

One of my favorite things to do is to peruse department store clearance racks. If I can get a $100 vest for $1.98, I consider it a major victory in the ongoing battle of Woman vs. Retail.

We all have ideas of what is “perfect” for us. For guys it might be that you know — you just KNOW — that you look good in Dockers. You might not even know why. For women, it might be a particular style or color. For me, it’s the color turquoise. I’ve always thought it was My Color. I feel good when I wear it and in my mind, it looks good on me. I’m certain of it, like water is wet and the sun will come up tomorrow. When I wear other colors, my eyes are kind of a dishwater blue-ish. When I wear turquoise, they come alive like laser beams. With the proper direct of my gaze, I could etch glass with the sheer brilliance of their hue. People cut tiny holes in cardboard just to be able to look at me without burning their retinas, like staring directly at a solar eclipse.

Have I mentioned that turquoise is My Color?

Recently, I was engaged in my favorite hobby-slash-sickness and was scouring the clearance racks. I happened upon The Perfect Blouse. Yeah, you guessed it; it was turquoise. AND it was deeply discounted. Double score! I hit the trifecta when I realized it was also machine washable!

Well, there was an older woman shopping beside me. There is an automatic camaraderie amongst cheapskates, and we were commiserating about the sale in general. She saw the turquoise blouse in my hands and commanded, “Hold it up to you.” I smiled inwardly, knowing full-well that I was about to be showered with compliments. I couldn’t wait for the clouds to part and the angels to trumpet, “Haaaaaallelujah!” I put the blouse up under my chin so that she could get the full effect and prepared to dazzle her. She said,

“Oh honey, that doesn’t do a THING for you …”

I can’t begin to describe the SHOCK that something I had always believed about myself was simply not true. Apparently, my friends and family had spared me the pain of knowing this by going along with the charade all these years. I sadly returned The Perfect Blouse to the rack.

Then, I realized that this was one person’s opinion. Why was I giving this complete stranger’s opinion this much weight? So, I waited until she left the store and defiantly bought the blouse.

The lesson was that we shouldn’t really let others define how we feel about ourselves, one way or another. Did this experience change my perception of myself? No! I still believe I can slice cheese with my gaze when wearing turquoise. And, as long as no one asks me to prove it, I’ll happily continue my self-delusion.

Have I mentioned that turquoise is My Color?

Salt Magazine