Sunday, August 26, 2007

A Woman's Prerogative

It's a woman's prerogative to change her mind. We've heard that saying a million times. As a man, I never really understood it. Men are trained as leaders to make a decision and stick with it no matter the consequences. Never mind the iceberg just up ahead. Stay the course. Don't be indecisive or waffling. Even if that choice leads you and everyone else over a cliff, it doesn't matter. You made the decision, and that makes you a real man.

I had a situation yesterday that made me understand for the briefest of moments that it is ok to change your mind. I went in with one assumption about what was right and came out with something very different. And wouldn't you guess it? It involved buying a formal dress. Now tell me how many of you are really surprised?

Let me preface this by saying Saturday was one of the most full scheduled femme days ever. I started the day by spending a couple of hours at Pride Day in Charlotte with my good friend Pamela Jones. We set up a table for NC TG Unity. The spirit was very strong, and it makes me very hopeful for the Charlotte GLBT community. I finished the day with the Transcarolina group in Greensboro at Warehouse 29. It was fun to see some old friends and make new ones. I have to admit I am not big on clubbing. However I do enjoy people watching, and that part of the show is always fascinating at Warehouse.

In between all that involved some very important shopping. I had a running list in my mind of what I wanted, and I think I checked off my whole list except for some new jewelry. Sorry Ms. Carmen! After checking into my hotel in Greensboro, I was off to my favorite department store Kohls. I love Kohls as I think they have the best combination of prices and clothes. The damage at Kohls was a new cream silky slip (feels so nice) and a couple of eyeshadows.

My next stop was David's Bridal where I wanted to buy a dress for the Saturday night gala at Southern Comfort. This is where I had my mind changing experience. Now you may be asking, "Stephanie, don't you have plenty of dresses?" Yes, but they're all floor length which is the style I love. However, this year at SCC, I'll be working with the video crew at SCC, and I need something I can move around in. I was thinking something knee length and free flowing. Immediately the saleslady found something in blue that I liked. It was cute, and the material felt really luxurious. It seemed to fit the bill.

I asked her if I could look around some more. Shortly I found a black tea length halter top number made of organza that was calling my name. I never even tried on the blue dress as I loved the black dress that much. It occurred to me that the black dress was a better choice as I didn't have any dresses in black. It was much more sophisticated than my first choice. It is also a dress that I can wear a number of places. The important thing is I liked the way I looked in it. So imagine the pic at the top in black, and that is the newest formal in Stephanie's prom closet.

The funny thing is I never would have picked out the dress from a catalog. While the internet and mail order are wonderful things, nothing beats trying clothes in person in front of a mirror. In fact, I was saved one skirt purchase at Kohls after trying on a skirt I thought I would like and having the mirror prove me wrong. It truly is a feminine experience trying on clothes and being surprised (in both good and bad ways) by the results. Many personal shoppers even suggest to try on at least one outfit that you normally wouldn't wear. Pretty good advice I would say.

I finished my shopping spree with a flirty skirt for the night from Fashion Bug and then a manicure. Have I even mentioned I was totally at ease en femme with the thermometer touching the upper 90's? Most of the stores were fairly crowded, but I was just another young woman shopping. I become more comfortable each time. I know how to shop better, and it saves me from making some bad choices. And you know... it is ok to change your mind especially when formal dresses are concerned!

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