Abashed. Delighted.

The demand that everybody display in public his innermost motivation, since it actually demands the impossible, transforms all actors into hypocrites; the moment the display of motivations begins, hypocrisy begins to poison all human relations.

-Hannah Arendt

She talked of politics, but that applies in knowing myself- I found years ago that I could discern good and bad, selfless and self-aggrandising, brave or cowardly, mean or generous, motivations for any act of my own. Seeing another, I feared he tortured himself by desiring to be Good rather than do as he wanted- for the moment you analyse possible motivations, you cannot know yourself to be good.

Where not constrained to act for a necessary end, should I just do what delights me?

I was delighted to find this Marion Donaldson dress in a charity shop. It flatters the figure, and stands out, with bold floral design in blue, red, green and intermediate colours. Then I went for a coffee with a friend. I noticed the other women could dress in a beautifully feminine manner- that floral sweater is pretty- yet all wore separates, mostly trousers, and I was abashed. Then a preview of a BBC4 documentary: the academic presenter wears a dress, and I feel delight: I am not alone. I noticed in France a few years ago more women wore dresses, perhaps because it is hotter.

Do I want to stand out, or fit in? Thinking of it, it might be good to improve my eye for these things, and get a wider range of clothes. I am fifty, and I am doing teenage still. I resent that it is so much effort, and want just to carry on as I am until a sudden intense feeling that that is not good enough.

Transition seems to be awfully to do with clothes mocked Lionel Shirer in Prospect magazine, but well, clothes are how we present ourselves to others.

I like dresses, and I wanted dresses for the Summer, and people do not generally wear dresses. I will wear them at Yearly Meeting: I don’t expect others to, but there some non-conformities seem OK.

I would like it clear and sorted, and it is not. I want to be, not all the time to have to become. As opportunities arise, or I have energy to seek them out, I may get a wider range of clothes to express myself or fit different situations while dealing with other issues. And that sudden self-conscious discomfort was useful information: it does not mean that I am useless and stupid, but that there are other possibilities…

I can’t make sense of this. I have conflicting desires and feelings, different levels of energy or discomfort,

but it is alright, really-

Degas, before the mirror

5 thoughts on “Abashed. Delighted.

  1. I wear a great many dresses, then swing over to jeans and t-shirt for the day to day dirty working (artist and dog lover (nothing dodgy), and I too have often found myself feeling a tad over dressed as few other women seem to do so. I still wear them mind you, I love vintage forties and fifties style dresses and I tend to forget that I’ve even noticed the difference after a short while. That said, sounds to me like you could have some fun experimenting with different clothes and enjoy shopping at the same time smiles

    esme always preferring the glamour of a dress over twould piece outfits upon the Cloud.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. So many observations I would like to make. Yes, you MUST do what delights you – it is God speaking, and in God we find all our answers, which are not logical or rational, but such fun.

    Please do not characterise wearing a dress as a non-conformity. They are marvellous, and I love them too, but can never find one that looks or fits the way I would like it to. If I could, I would wear them all the time. I suspect that many women wear separates because they are easier to wash!

    The divine paradox in being and becoming is that we are always becoming, because life is always moving us forward. And we are being – we are human, being. That has nothing to do with reason or logic, and all to do with stillness and listening.

    Lots of love, always! ((♥))


    • I am at yearly meeting. A woman volunteered to put up someone coming to YM, so I got the train out to Hampstead. She is completely lovely and we have had two warm hugs. And more hugs with more beautiful people in Friends House. Listening is good; listening when conscious of being loved better. Love. Love. ❤

      Added: This is it: X delights me; then I see or realise Y, and I feel a fool. And I am not a fool…

      Liked by 1 person

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