When I was in my early twenties and falling desperately in love for the second time, we were invited to a 1920s themed party. I went antique shopping and found this amazing flapper-style dress, from the 1960s-era obsession with the 20s. It was short, white, with a white sequined collar and layers of fringe that flew out impressively when I spun around. Oh, I loved that dress.I wore it to that party, I wore it at multiple Halloween parties, it was a lucky charm. I felt so incredibly stylish in it, like I became a more fun person when I put it on.
Over time and kilos, I was unable to get into it any more. But I couldn't let it go. The thing was, even if I wasn't wearing it, just having it still made me feel happy, the memories I associated with times when I had worn it rushing to the surface every time my hand passed over that fringe. There was a twinge of nostalgia, pain from an old wound, the love had after all ended badly and I felt sometimes like the fun person who wore that dress was not still somewhere inside me, but as gone as dead. But mostly I remembered dancing at a Halloween party, brushing against other dancers when I twirled. Laughing.
Last weekend there was a costume ball and a friend of mine was looking for a dress, a flapper dress if she could find one. Heeeeyyyy I said. I could... you could...
She looked great. It made me so happy to see her wearing it, being admired in it; it was almost better than wearing it myself, because when I danced beside her I could delight in the cool swish of fringe against my arm. I feel like I can let the dress go now, because it's found a place to be loved; I can keep the memories now without needing the dress. And this is always so, for me, that I don't have a problem with letting go when I'm sure that what I release will land somewhere better. Pulling that dress out of the cedar was one of the best things I've done so far this year.