As we are, hopefully, nearing the end of lockdown #3 (or who knows how many, I lost count), I feel the need to address a phenomenon that is a byproduct of these unprecedented times* and which evoked the above cry in me.
*UT for short
Counting from 23rd, March, 2020, today is the 326th day of UT. Almost a year since we are restricted in our lives, our movement, our social life and spare time activities.Almost a year since we could invite guests , hug family members, party with friends. Almost a year since we could go to the theatre or the movies, splash in the pool or travel to see the world.
Much have been limited in our lives but negativity. It’s mentally dragging.
I listened to so many co-workers, friends, received so many messages on facebook that were full of negativity and complaints. People didn’t only nag about real problems, they started to notice nuisances and grew them into big issues.
Because the “kid doesn’t understand the math exercise and my partner keept explaining for him for an hour and he still doesn’t understand and now he is crying” – Your kid didn’t understand it in the past either but it was the teacher who had to explain it all over again.
Because “my daughter has a birthday coming up and we can’t go out to a restaurant to invite her friends at a party” – There are so many children who can never invite friends because their parents simply can’t afford it.
Because “it’s so rainy and I don’t like walking in this muddy weather” – You live in Scotland…Really?
And so on and so forth.
There is, however, a more alarming notion I noticed.
Facebook is full of posts by women that convey the message that you’re only good enough if you give 100% every day, if you are fully and nicely dressed and your hair and make-up are topnotch. A friend of mine shared a fb-memory about how she had been embarrassed because she had reached such a low point in her life when she let herself be seen in a jogger outside her house! Sharing this post she also noted how shocking the extent of this new “low” was that she now allows herself to exist in. hashtag comfyclothes, hashtag covidhairdontcare.
Girls, I’m asking you…Do you really need to feel embarrassed by wearing joggings when you are at home all day, no dresscode, no place to go, no one to meet? Why don’t you enjoy those hashtagcomfyclothes instead?
Do you really not care about your covidhair that haven’t been touched by a hairdresser for ages if you take the time to post about it on social media to potentially hundreds of people? Has it occured to you that you claim to be worthy only if you’re pretty and you also imply everyone is worthless whose hair has not been cut and/or dyed in the past year?
Thanks but no, thanks. I still love myself in leggings and a tee and I still appreciate my personality with my growing-greying hair. (And you should, too. Because you are worthy.)
Here comes the question though, if you feel this is so low, why don’t you aim higher? Most probably because you also know deep down that there are periods in life when appearance doesn’t matter so much. When it’s not ordinary days but UT on the plate and looking good is not a priority.
Sure, I know why you feel this way. Because you are longing for those nice-hair days, when it was enough to put on a pretty dress and a light make-up to feel confident. If difficulties wiped the smile off your face, you could look into the mirror and immediately felt being able to tackle anything after you re-applied your lipstick. You were on top of everything. Again.
Alas, these are not those days. But please, please remember:
You can still smile without make-up.
You can send an enouraging nod with unkept hair.
You can be there for someone who needs you even in joggings.
These are what these times are asking for. Love, patience and acceptance towards yourself and others. Because you are enough.