Years ago I was told by female co-workers to stop setting a "bad" example by dressing up for work. We used to have to dress "business" five days a week. Then in the early 1990's the company president gave us casual Friday's. Still need to dress appropriate, but no ties etc. But clean jeans, sneakers and shorts would be allowed. In the later 1990's, we went to business casual five days a week.
In late 2006 when I went "full time", I was dressing more like "business" at work, much to they dismay of my female co-workers, even on Fridays. Their comments were tongue-in-cheek basically "If we lose casual dress because of you, you're in deep shit" , but strangely enough I set the bar higher and everyone in the company started noticing the girls started to step up their wardrobes considerably. But I was also told that I'd get sick of dressing up and it wouldn't be long before I reverted back to sneakers, jeans and collared shirts. A charge I denied. They were right, I was wrong. Completely.
The only time I had slipped back in to 'boy mode' was for 24 hours in late March 2007. I was still working in racing and was sharing a hotel room with two other officials. My status and gender intentions still unknown to the racing community, I had to go back to that awful 'boy mode' for the weekend. It sent me into a bad depression for a week afterwards. That was a major mistake, but at least I learned from it.
As time went on I did go back to jeans twice a week, at least, more often in the winter. Especially the further time passed from my surgery, the more comfortable I got without skirts, heels, make-up etc. I became "one of them", not that they don't dress nice because they certainly do. But not my standards, but I became complacent and lazy.
Shopping in Montreal this past March with Diane, Karyn & Jennifer, I noticed the girls in Montreal dressed so much nicer than the girls in New Hampshire, despite the cold and snow outside. No matter the age, size or shape these girls were all well put together. They looked spectacular. I'm still not sure if it was jealousy or my self made lesbian tendencies coming out. My friend Jennifer, that I had met in Montreal in 2011, at some of or girls night out gatherings, was dressing more like I used to and she always looks great. In the back of my mind I was getting jealous. Well not jealous per say, but I kind of knew that's where I needed to get back to. That was a big part of who I became. That was also when I was my happiest.
Due to the long, cold winter, family medical issues and personal illness and medical issues, fiscal issues, I was very much in a mental and physical rut. I really wasn't happy with where I had progressed to in four years post-op. In fact, I hadn't progressed at all. I was depressed and not at all happy with where I was in life. I'm still not granted. LOL
But one Sunday out shopping, I was down and having neuroma pain. I was miserable. And I thought to myself what happened, I was happier not much long ago. And it dawned on me. I need to get back to when I felt good. To when I was happiest, which was probably five years earlier. When I presented myself better, I felt much more confident. Much happier. Now I'm not talking about dressing like RuPaul or a drag queen, just like girl that's more commonly found in Boston, New York or Montreal. I had to get back to square one.
Tonight, I'm doing my fifth annual lecture at Southern New Hampshire University. Hard for even I to believe this is my fifth year and that my first one was done exactly 23 days after my surgery. That one seemed like the easiest one too. But I was going to dress normal for work and change before heading over to SNHU. But my friend and co-worker Nicole convinced me to just dress for the day, seeing I have an office job anyways.
For the first time in probably nearly two years, I wore a dress, heels and tights to work and I'm happy to say that I haven't felt this good or upbeat in a long, long time. And the positive comments have been non-stop. All it took was to get me back to square one. Back to when I was happiest. Very much influenced by Jennifer's presentation and Nicole's prodding, I believe the real me is back. I'm truly back in a happy mode. Thanks ladies. :)
Sometimes you just need to stop, look around and think how you put yourself in the funk and where you were when you found you happy plateau and make a little effort to get your back. Sometimes it's not all that difficult.