Young Sara finally got around to reading the last installment of Point/Counterpoint and has a bone to pick with Old Sara… I welcome you to read the strange argument I have with myself as a result.
Sara Roan, age 11
To be honest, I’m still in shock over the revelations made regarding my future. Though it’s somewhat upsetting, I suppose I can’t fault older me for not having a career yet—I understand how hard it is to choose between becoming famous and changing the world by shaping young minds. I just hope she settles on something soon so all my potential is not for naught.
I would rather take this time to discuss something far more upsetting: her affinity for kaftans and muumuus. I like wearing my mother’s nightgowns as much as the next kid, but this is too much. I cannot continue to spend my formative years fighting against wool cable knit tights and hand-me-downs from my older brother knowing that I’ll just end up gallivanting around in shapeless shifts, covered in tacky floral prints.
Do I have your ear (eyes) now, Old Sara? Let me remind you of a few things, starting with the wool tights. Sure, Mom throws me a bone every once in a while (stockings with pink hearts on them, socks with a frill at the ankle when you fold them down), but for some reason she loves those wool tights, those itchy leg-prisons best of all, no matter how often the crotch rides down to my knees. This from the woman who refused to wear matching dresses when I was younger. This from the woman who thinks it’s a good idea to put me in boy’s chinos, yet tells me to change when I try to pair them with a burgundy silk blouse and beaded vest. She’s an enigma, a fashion-controlling enigma.
And don’t get me started on her refusal to “give in to trends.” Shirts with bell sleeves and pirate ruffles are timeless; I don’t know how she can’t wrap her head around that. Regardless, all this is worth it, knowing that one day I’ll be able to dress myself. That one day I’ll be able to take myself to a store in a car and buy things using the money in my wallet—heels, short dresses with scoop-necks, velvet chokers with silver hearts or peace signs hanging from them.
I want to live the dream, and, Old Sara, you’re killing the dream.
Sara Roan, age 27
Oh, Sara of the past…so young, so naïve. Girl, don’t you think that if I could afford scoop-neck dresses, I would buy them? Do you know me at all?
Here’s the thing. There was a time when I had a real job that gave me real money, but I left it to find a better path for myself—for both of us. I’m fighting the good fight; I’m walking dogs, professionally. And as such, all I do all day is sweat and pick up dog poop. Those two things are very pungent and upsetting, so when I come home, excuse me if I just want to don a loose gown and sashay around the house. It doesn’t necessarily have to be floral print, but how fun are bright, gaudy prints?
Even before becoming a dog walker, my options were limited. Yes, taking myself to a store in a car and buying things with money in my wallet is great in theory. But, and this is going to rock your world, there’s this thing called bills. Just a head’s up: you’re going to be paying student loans until at least 2030. I don’t feel like getting 45 year-old Sara into this mix, but I’m sure she’ll back me up on this. Bills suck and they drain that money in your wallet.
So, I wore and continue to wear what I can afford. I wear it over and over. I wear it into the ground. And then I sew the holes in it. You’re going to buy a sweater in a few years that I still wear regularly now.
Here’s a word of fashion advice, now that you know your financial future: embrace the quirky. You’re going to go through a fairly asexual dressing phase of baggy jeans and sweatshirts, based on the principle that they’re comfortable, cheap, and handy, but that same line of thought can be applied to thrift store finds that will accentuate your physique a bit better. Just a thought!
Photo credit: LittleMagpie