Every woman should have at least one special dress in their lifetime that makes them feel joyful about themselves.
Like that first prom dress. Remember the excitement and anticipation you felt as you got dressed that night? The butterflies in your stomach when your date arrived so handsome in his tux, shyly looking down as he handed you a corsage.
Or your wedding gown. How many dresses did you try on before you found the one? The dress that was going to make this day, your day, one filled with magic and memories you would never forget? Yes, every woman should have that one special dress.
I never went to my prom. I never married. With the approach of my 60th birthday squarely in my sight, I realized I had lived my entire life without ever getting to experience that belle-of-the-ball feeling which only a truly magnificent dress can give you.
Turning 60 can be unnerving. Thoughts of your own mortality start rearing their ugly heads with alarming frequency. Except for my arms, which Father Time has seen fit to replace with chicken skin, I still look great. At some point, honesty substitutes for vanity. We have to access how we look in true light. We have to appreciate the work we’ve put into keeping fit and healthy. I’ll go so far as to say that on good day, and with proper (forgiving) lighting, I defy stereotypes for my age, perhaps even for a few decades younger!
“60 is the new 40” became the theme for the party my friends were throwing me. It was about damn time I bought myself the dress.
I knew that only a designer frock would do. I’m not wealthy by any means but after trying on dress after dress, reducing more than one sales lady to tears, and spending hours on the Internet comparison shopping, I found it. It couldn’t have been more perfect: A lovely Nicole Miller gold sheath with a gold lace and sequined overlay that had ever-so-subtle specks of garnet red in it. The little lace cap sleeves did nothing to hide my chicken arms. Luckily my bust was prominently featured and, as it turned out, provided a much-appreciated diversion.
I accessorized with gold and garnet jewelry. Carried a garnet satin clutch. Obsessed over just the right shade of nail polish. For shoes, I found elegant gold heels that could have been made for the dress with the added bonus of making my size nine feet look positively dainty. I justified the cost of the ensemble by prorating it over the 60 years of my lifetime, something I’d highly recommend to anyone considering such a purchase.
The night of the party finally arrived. I’d asked all my friends to dress in their very best black tie attire and we would have been welcomed on any red carpet with the best of them. The champagne flowed. Cameras flashed. We danced till we dropped. And me? I was the belle of the ball!
Editors Note: You can read more from Jayne at her blog, In Jayne’s World