I’ve Worn Real Clothes for Four Days and the World Has Yet to End

Apparently, most people get up and get dressed in the morning. I am not one of those people. I prefer to stay in my pajamas until I take a shower, after which I change into different pajamas. It’s pretty awesome. I don’t see why more people don’t do it.

My lovely grandparents came into town last Friday. I don’t feel the need to go all-out, mega impressive. However, it is not considered okay to walk around in pants printed with Christmas trees. (Yes, I am aware that Christmas is over, and no I will not stop wearing Holiday-themed pajama pants. Everyone knows that the most comfortable sleepwear is produced in winter.) After trying to find a way out of it, I was left with only one option: actual clothing.

Plus, I knew the would want to do things like go out and leave the house. I know there are some that find it socially acceptable to exit their home in nightwear, I do not. I have some dignity left. Seriously, unless there is a major emergency, you should at least be wearing track pants. Get it together, high school girls. It’s not cute. I remember driving up to school once and I saw a freshman get out of her parent’s car and wave goodbye. As soon as the vehicle drove away, she took off her baggy sweatpants to reveal a pair of Hello Kitty pajamas underneath. Really?!

Anyways, after I went shopping for some “normal clothes,” I was prepared for a very different kind of weekend. I was going to have to things that I am so not used to.

I woke up on Friday with a large to-do list. I completely put off was too busy to get it all done beforehand. My stuff was all over the house and I was still in my attire of choice. With only a few hours before their arrival for dinner, I got to work. Lucky for me, everyone else was out of the house for a while. I seem to get more done when I’m by myself. I scrambled to put my boxes of God-knows-what into what has been deemed the “hoarder’s room.” It’s basically the room where everyone puts their crap that doesn’t seem to have a place. The fact that we still have boxes all over the house after living here for three years is a bit pathetic.

After making the common areas look presentable came the moment of truth. No yoga pants, no lounge wear, no sports bras. I stared at my dark-wash jeans wondering if there was still any way to get out of it. Do my jeans even fit? I think I may have worn them in January?

But, I did my makeup, pulled my hair half-up (baby steps), and put on those straight-legs. I even wore a sweater, breaking the mold by layering with something other than a hoodie. I also put on some earrings and a bracelet. My grandfather is a jeweler by trade, so showing up without some bling would be heavily frowned upon.

My extended family stayed for about four hours that night. Enough time to eat dinner, play cards, and listen to embarrassing stories about my father’s childhood. They had a long day of flying and layovers, so we didn’t expect them to stay too long. I got to bed late (shocker) and ended the first of four days in real clothes.

The rest of the weekend presented a few challenges. For one, I had to wake up early. Well, early for me. I didn’t want to be inconsiderate, rolling out of bed whenever I felt like. On top of that, I genuinely enjoy the company of my grandparents. They were only staying until Monday (today), so I wanted to take full advantage of the time I had with them.

Saturday was spent in Santa Fe, as my tiny town only has so much to offer. We divided our day by looking at old churches, walking in heavy rain, and going into my favorite oil and vinegar store. The night ended perfectly by eating at a lovely Italian restaurant that was booked solid. My grandfather has unmatched charm and quick thinking, which got us in right away and without a reservation. It was wonderful.

On Sunday, my brother was presented with his Eagle Scout award. This was the main purpose for my family’s visit. We listened to endless speeches and watched various people distribute an unusual amount of pins and recognition pieces. The highlight was my grandfather’s introductory speech. It was short, sweet, and so beautiful. My mom cried. It was really nice to attend such a special event of my brother’s. I haven’t always been able to go to his award ceremonies and celebrations. This is the “big deal” award ceremony, so I was happy to be able to support him.

Following the talking and a bit of cleanup, we came home and watched the Oscars because my grandparents like the Oscars. I’m indifferent towards award shows. I like the dresses and the highlights. I get all I need to know from social media and Fashion Police.

Then Monday comes around (cue Switchfoot song), and I am once again subjected to the ways of the convential. Getting up and getting dressed is hard. How do you do it everyday?! But I’m wearing jeans again and the world appears to still be intact.

I met my grandparents at their hotel for breakfast for some final laughs and goodbyes. Because they live in California, I don’t have the luxury of seeing them often. Whenever I have the opportunity to have them around, I treasure it. Besides, I always walk away with a few blackmail stories regarding my father.

Subsequently, the long weekend has left me very tired. I participated in so much more than I typically do. I don’t see myself taking on so much everyday from this point forward, as I would burn out very quickly. All the doctors that I’ve had, the good ones anyways, have stressed the importance of not over-doing it. Of course, there is the exception of having family in from out of town.

Now that the visit has passed, I kind of missed my comfortable clothes. You can’t blame me, right? I wasn’t scared, necessarily, of putting on real clothes. Because that would be crazy. I, like in a lot of things, had become too comfortable in my surroundings. But in the end, I accomplished quite a bit. I joined civilization and put on some concealer. Plus, I learned that putting on a pair of jeans every once in a while isn’t going to kill me.

xx Courtney

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Is “Get a Hobby” an Insult if it Comes from Your Doctor?

sad bored hobby

My doctor was much kinder, but the message is essentially the same.

It might be time to reevaluate your life when even your doctor is telling you to get a hobby.

I will be going back to Mayo Clinic in the coming months for a three-week program. Before my dates were set, I had to be “approved” by someone who works there. Basically, they were just making sure I wasn’t a drug addict or someone with violent tendencies. During the phone call, the man asked, “What do you do for fun?” Because I have a rule about lying to doctors/medical professionals, I replied honestly.

“Nothing.”

As I spoke the truth, the answer burned. My reality was upsetting for many reasons. I hadn’t consciously chosen to eliminate enjoyable things from my life. With all of my medical issues, I just didn’t have time. My world revolved around the specific goal of getting better. Adjectives formerly used to describe my life were replaced with different words, like recovery, treatment, and therapy. In the process of making room for the aspects of my new normal, something had to give. Fun was that thing.

I was sad because this wasn’t my choice. This wasn’t the result of teenage angst or rebellion. My life was turned upside down in the blink of an eye. You know how celebrities say that their lives changed over night once they got their big break? Mine changed overnight, too. Except, when I woke up I didn’t have fans and magazine covers. I had blood tests and doctor’s appointments.

Last September, my doctor made it clear that I need to focus on me. For the past five years, my health has been my only priority. In that sense, I was decent. As far as remaining happy and working on myself as a person? Not so much.

I used to have lots of hobbies. I was in drama club, swim team, writing academy (a story for another post), and a slew of other moderately impressive activities. I also actually had a social life and went out on the weekends.

Preach

I’m a believer in doing the things that you want. What I wanted to do was stay home, wear yoga pants, and watch Supernatural reruns. Apparently, this is not acceptable for everyday life.

After being told that my way of life is, in fact, not a way of life, I had to reexamine. Sure, I didn’t have hobbies. That’s a relatively easy fix. What really concerned me is that I wasn’t particularly interested in getting one. There are definitely some days that I really can’t leave the house. When it feels like you’re being consistently stabbed in the head, even breathing seems like a chore. Get up and do something? Nope. Not happening. When I really thought about it, there are some days when I find that I could go out and do something, but I don’t want to.

This left me with two problems to sort out.

1. I had no hobbies/enjoyable things to occupy myself with.

2. I didn’t care.

I quickly learned that getting a hobby wasn’t going to be my biggest obstacle. Finding the motivation to get one would be.

As I said before, my prescription for fun was handed to me back in September. It was renewed during that phone conversation with the hospital. I neglected to fill it until this year.

Since I have been feeling a little better due to my regular acupuncture, I have a restored sense of living. I want to try things. I want to do things. One of my resolutions was to get a hobby. So, I decided to stray from the crowd and actually stick to it! No time like the present, right?

I am working on some posts to share the things that I’ve done in continuation with my previous alternative therapies post. It should get interesting.

In the past month, especially, I rediscovered the motivation I lost years ago. I don’t feel like I’m getting back to the old me, but rather forming into a better version of the person I was always meant to become.

xx Courtney

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