I am people people, hear me groan

On Tuesday, I went to visit my very dear friend who had a mastectomy. It’s not the mastectomy that is important to this story, other than when she called me a few weeks ago to let me know that she would be undergoing the procedure after only just learning about the cancer, I realized just how fragile and unpredictable life can be.

This particular friend was my first real friend I made here in France. We met in 2009 due to our musical endeavors and have been spurring one another onward in our musical exploits ever since. Knowing she would be amused by the story of the heel flying off my shoe while I sang over the weekend, she was my first phone call. She said it was the first good laugh she’s had in a while.

She and I did a wardrobe exchange over the summer last year, and I ended up the lucky recipient of nearly a dozen tulle petticoats in every possible color. I had no earthly idea what I was going to do with all those petticoats, but I very much enjoyed looking at them in my closet. I’m not sure I even imagined that I would ever wear them, but boy oh boy, were they pretty.

That is how, at the beginning of this year, as I started my Buy No Clothes challenge, I wound up clownishly pairing a turquoise petticoat with a loud red Look At Me dress.

A perfect outfit for the wannabe circus clown set.

Well, since my friend gave me the news about her cancer, I have been drawn to those petticoats like never before as a way to be with my friend when I couldn’t be with her. All this week, I have been wearing dresses and petticoats. I went to visit her wearing the red dress and turquoise petticoat, which made her laugh and smile, something I was thankful for. That was my intent.

All of this to say, after so boldly putting together some pretty loud and Look At Me-ish outfits these last few weeks, I faced a mental backlash last night.

I stood in front of my closet for at least fifteen minutes and grumbled “I have nothing to wear.”

I had looked at the weather for today, which promised nothing good. I looked at all the daring things I had been trying with colors and dresses and lacy leggings. I found that I had lost my nerve. I had lost my urge to explore and be visible.

The only thing I was sort of tempted to wear was an old black sweater and an old pair of black jeans. I have petticoats in every color of the rainbow and all I want to wear is black.


I got out at least ten different items of clothing that I haven’t worn yet this year, that need to be added to the Pantheon inventory. I rejected every single one of them. The nagging “I have nothing to wear” feeling started to overtake me. I literally had tried on ten things that I haven’t worn yet this year, yet my heart insisted that “I have nothing to wear.”

I am people people. Hear me groan.

Published by Lily Fields

I am passionate about contentment. This is a challenge, because I am equally passionate about progress. I get up at 4:00AM to chip away at a solution to this monolithic problem: how to make progress on my contentment. Born and raised in the USA, I married a French philosophy teacher in 1999. We have lived in France since 2007. We stayed young and carefree until life threw us two curveballs in the form of little humans one after another in 2015 and 2017 respectively. Now I am a slightly older, slightly more exhausted version of myself, but with mystery stains on my walls and a never-ending pile of laundry.

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