The Red Dress

Gathering dust, in the far corner of her wardrobe. She didn’t check in on it any longer, but Annabelle always knew it was there.

A flash of scarlet when she rummaged at the back after her comfortable leggings. A small tug at her heart. A shrug. A passing thought that she would come back to it later, when she was smaller, trimmer, sexier. Maybe Ted would look at her differently then. Maybe.

The days and weeks passed by. When she woke up one morning it had been five years. She thought guiltily of the dress, flattened by years pressed between old winter jackets, and ate another slice of cake. Her stomach distended comfortably within her elastic waisted jeans.

One day she checked in on it. Pulled it out, held it against her body. She wondered if she could slip into it like her old self could, and imagined how it would slink past her shoulders and surround her waist, hovering, floating, around her knees. Silk and gauze, satin and chiffon, all combined intricately to create an image of vivid, crimson beauty.

She sighed. She couldn’t make herself do it, and put it back on the hanger to wait another five years.

‘I’ll lose a few pounds then it will be fine.’

She didn’t, though.

In the middle of the night, when the dew glistened on the grass, singing as they perched atop the dark green blades, their voices rising in the black night, like the tinkle of a thousand small glasses clinking together; the wardrobe door opened.

It creaked a little, and Annabelle’s eyes opened. The ceiling glittered, as though there was moonlight shining on a body of water, and she found that odd, but she didn’t say anything.

The red dress swished a little. She didn’t know how she knew it was the dress, but she knew. She dared not look, for a strange fright took hold of her, clasping her neck gently with cold fingers. It slid out of the wardrobe, and as though there were a pair of dainty feet beneath the folds of chiffon, it danced ever so slowly across her floorboards, barely making a creak, and flew right out of her open window.

A gust of cool night air brushed her cheeks, and she felt her cold tears freeze.

The soft song of the dew outside drew her from beneath her sheets, and she glided over to the window in her red satin pyjamas, her eyes wide in wonder. For the world under the starry night sky was unlike any world she had seen before. The dew glittered on the grass like a thousand diamonds, and she saw the red dress among its blades. Only there was a woman within the chiffon folds, so faint and transparent she barely saw her, save for a flash of her throat as she turned her head gracefully in the moonlight, and a flutter of long, black lashes. Her hands hovered above the grass, caressing the plants, and she danced to the tune of the dew.

Annabelle stood, staring. She felt light as a feather, as though she, too, could glide out of the window and dance in the dew. She felt beautiful, like the invisible lady in the dress, and her limbs ached to move, but her eyelids felt heavy, and slowly, lulled by the soft music, they fluttered shut.

When she woke up the next morning, she was back in her warm bed. She threw her covers back and darted across the room, flinging her wardrobe door open. There was her dress, right at the front, the hem soaked.

She glanced back at her window. It was closed.

Later that evening, when glasses clinked and the chatter of content adults rose towards the ceiling of the large drawing room downstairs, a stunning young woman walked down the stairs. She was soft and warm, her jet black hair piled at the back of her head, and gleaming curls cascaded down her bare shoulders. Teetering on the edge of her shoulders, the satin sleeves of her crimson dress nestled. She walked confidently, and her dress brought out the glitter in her large, dark eyes. Ted could not take his eyes off her. Who on earth was she?

Annabelle walked down the stairs, feeling quite unlike her usual self. She glanced around, watching people talking and laughing amongst themselves. She wished she didn’t wear it. She felt the satin stretch a little around her waist. It looked so glamorous in the mirror, but now she wasn’t quite so sure. She had the sudden urge to wear it tonight, instead of her loose grey gown that she always wore. Her mother handed her a tall glass of something red and sweet, and she held it in her hands, looking around to mingle.

‘Goodness gracious me, is that Annabelle?’

She glanced up.

‘Janey! You decided to come after all!’

‘Yes, darling, but you look fabulous!’

‘Do you really think so?’

‘Oh, darling, you are positively stunning! I didn’t recognise you at first! And goodness me, Ted can’t take his eyes off you.’ She leaned towards her conspiratorially, breathing the last sentence out at her, before gulping down the rest of her drink and setting it down on the table next to her, ‘Right, I’m off to dance with some fine young gents,’ and she gave Annabelle a peachy kiss on her flushed cheek, before sailing gaily away.

sexy-woman-red-dress-painting-100-handmade-modern-abstract-oil-painting-on-canvas-pictures-high-quality.jpg

 

 

Advertisements

Fat.

You know how everybody says things like,

‘Oh I learned to love my curves and wobbly bits’

and

‘I changed my lifestyle and suddenly I don’t mind the fat. I feel comfortable in my skin.’

and

‘I am happy with how I look, fat rolls and all.’

How can they say that? And how do they look so good? Does their confidence automatically add ten million nice real life pixels on to their bodies?

I am above my necessary weight. And I feel so so fat. And ugly. And so uncomfortable in my own skin. I can’t breathe properly because I am a few pounds overweight and always trying to suck my tummy in. And NOTHING looks good on me because I have a massive ass and huge thighs but tiny calves and ankles and arms and my stomach is not flat anymore, so my clothes all look weird. Fat does not sit well on me at all, and I have a small face too so it just looks – WRONG!

I TRY to tell myself it is okay, I am still beautiful.. but I do not feel it at all. I feel fat and ugly and horrendous and out of place.

Also my husband says, ‘What happened to you, Lenora!?’ and he THINKS things because I can read his face like a book and it makes it worse and I just feel so horrible and unattractive and nasty.

Yesterday I was in the changing rooms and it felt like the music of my life sizzled into a buzz like an angry wasp and then it crankled a bit like a big machine dying down and crumpled into nothing. I noticed my muffin top and my pouchy tummy and then my arms are wiggly and my face is horrible and my legs are not legs they are wobbly misshapen things and I am just a massive ball of wobbly horrible things and I can’t love this. Who can love this? It is awful.

And I stood there for a good fifteen minutes just staring at myself in shock and disgust, and when I came out the lady said, ‘Did you like anything?’

And in my head I said, ‘Yes I loved it all but i hated my body so I am not getting anything at all because my skin does not deserve it and I am a flabby, ugly, dragon and I hate myself.’

I said, aloud, ‘Yes, thanks! I’ll take this one!’

And walked out and now the cute top I bought it hidden away in my drawer because I can’t bring myself to wear it and see how expanded my stomach has become in the span of TWO MONTHS.

I am just a miserable pile of unwanted fat.

malinda_prudhomme___beauty_art___oil_painting_by_malindaart-d63uoz7.png

How the heck do they do it? How do they look so gorgeous! Image Credit.