18 November 2018

When You Lose Your Love of Clothing

But you still have to wear it's clothing. You must. It's very important.

I've loved clothes my whole life. My style varies with the seasons, but I've always taken great joy out of my closet and getting dressed for each day.

Until...the last year-ish.

How typical. Get pregnant and then be a nursing mom and fall out of love with your closet.

I think it's a combination of factors:

- The climate I live in - layering, nursing tanks, lots of ways to make practical 'mom' outfits look more interesting are simply not practical when it's never ending summer. If I'm going to a place with cold aircon like the mall or the hospital, sure, layers can work there, but not anywhere else.

- My natural style preferences - I like woven cotton dresses in bright colors with a quirky accessory or two. As a second option, I like tunics with leggings. Neither of these options makes nursing easy, and accessories and babies aren't a great mix. Just yesterday he got ahold of one of my earrings...ouch! I mean, I do love jeans and a good t-shirt...but that's all I've been wearing and it gets a little boring after a while. And jeans are not all that comfortable in this heat (Many of my days I have to look a little bit like a responsible, semi-professional adult and shorts aren't an option...hence, my preference for light cotton dresses).

- Money - I think it's fairly universal that women find it hard to spend money on maternity and nursing-specific clothing because we have in mind that it's a relatively short season of life and money can't really be thrown away on clothes you're only gonna wear for a year or so.

Because you only have to get dressed 365 or 366 days a year. That's not often at all. Also, although I know that cute and not-so-boring clothing exists that was specifically designed for pregnant and nursing moms, they mostly exist in America. Not here. Actually, for my birthday when I was pregnant, I sat down all excited to buy some cute actual maternity clothes that I'd been eyeing online with my  birthday money...but they didn't ship to Malaysia. So I gave up, bought a total of 4 loose cotton tunics, and with pairing those with leggings and whatever still fit from my normal wardrobe, finished out the nine months. I will admit I was very excited to get back to my old jeans after those nine months were over!

It's been strange to find that a lifelong love has faded in recent months. Even with Christmas approaching, I didn't put any wearable items on my wishlist because...I just try not to think about clothes right now. I like the t-shirts I have. I have some cute ones that my sister made me at the custom graphic tee shop that she works at--those are especially precious to me. I have a cute Mickey Mouse shirt and a Star Wars graphic tee--that's the one I'm wearing as I type this. I have exactly one pair of jeans with the world's most perfect fit--seriously, 'holy grail' type jeans and I love them so. I also have a couple pairs of hand-me-down jeans from my sister that do not have the perfect fit, but they are very comfy, and hence, work out great for baby-chasing.

But I miss the variety. I love a good tee paired with my perfect-fit jeans, but somehow, I just don't get as excited about it as I would when wearing a red-and-white polka dot dress with flared skirt, and a long necklace and quirky pendant.

So I don't love my clothes the way I used to during this moment of life. And I know it's just a moment, one that will be fleetingly past before I know it. But it's been funny to realize that the style I loved for so long just doesn't work for me right now. And I haven't even succumbed to the "mom wearing leggings" stereotype, even though I actually really like leggings with a short dress, because even that outfit is not especially baby-feeding-friendly, either.

The season for dresses will come again...I think. In the meantime, if I ever get back to the USA and go to Old Navy, I'm splurging on a second pair of holy grail jeans.
Kristin said...

For me, I felt like the whole world opened up again when I lost baby weight. However, not having a job and literally not having anywhere to go aside from the grocery store means that I just wear leggings and tshirts and sweatshirts and tunics. Plus, it's cold. I enjoy warm weather, but the heat all year long would be draining for any fashion-lover!
I also found that maternity clothes weren't nearly as much fun as I assumed they'd be. You just don't feel like yourself so you don't want to invest in them. Mine were all from Old Navy.

Unknown said...

I can totally relate! Although I've never been very fashionable anyway, now that I'm nursing, I wear the same oversized shirts and sweatpants over and over.

Unknown said...

That is awesome that you have such a good pair of jeans! Why is it so hard to find good jeans that fit perfectly? I haven't worn jeans in at least 3 years, though, so I don't know much about how the jean market is now, but when I used to wear jeans I disliked jeans shopping immensely. Skirts and dresses are much more fun :)

Figuring out clothes while caring for a breastfeeding baby is certainly a challenge! With my firstborn, I discovered that I don't love nursing tanks. I have a couple, and even the one that is fairly supportive is just...I don't know. I don't feel as put-together when I'm wearing it. When I was pregnant with this baby, I got some inexpensive camisoles from the thrift store, shopped off the bottoms, and most days I'll pair one of those with a top or dress that has a plunging v-neckline of some sort, and wear a supportive nursing bra underneath. It's been working out great, and I feel a lot more pleased with my wardrobe this time around. I never was that into dresses that have a wraparound style or shirts that have a deep v-opening, but they have been nice for the breastfeeding years. And last winter, I found a really cute poka dotted dress with a flaired skirt that has teeny tiny buttons up the front, so it's technically nursing-friendly, though it will probably be a little bit of a hassle to nurse the baby with it on (I'm thinking I'll wait til the little guy isn't nursing as often, then I'll pull that dress out). At the same time, though, I do really miss my cool maxi dress and high-necked cotton tunic, neither of which are breastfeeding compatible.

Callie said...

I remember going through the same accessory struggles after I had Wyatt. I used to love really long earrings! I still haven’t gotten back to those. ☹️ Dresses are tricky with nursing for sure - if you have any that button in the front, those are the best! I always wore ones with buttons, or really thin straps I could just pull down under my (very lightweight) nursing cover. If you can sew at all, a poncho-style cover is the best - just a big circle of fabric with a hole in the middle for your head. Then you can lift up your shirt, or pull a wide neck or thinner strapped dress down under the cover and nothing shows!

ingodslove said...

I missed my dresses while bfeeding so I found a couple of versatile button up shirt dresses. They make it fairly easy to access for nursing and I can roll the sleeves up or down depending on my temperature preferences. They are just basic shades of blue though- how fun would it be to find something like that in a bright print? idk. Maybe that helps? It's ok to not love clothing;)