After I broke up with Lauren, I was a little bit lost for a while. So I returned to my roots and began wearing another Avon fragrance. Pearls and Lace. I believe I discovered her in one of those foil sample packs inside the Avon catalog. Back to sweet and light. Pearls and Lace was not ever a serious relationship, but it worked when there was nothing better knocking on my door.
I wore Pearls and Lace for a couple of years in my mid 20s.
Little did I know, a major love was about to enter my life.
I don't recall wearing perfume later in high school. But when I started college I found one that I liked.
I became friends with this girl in my program. For the life of me, I can't remember her name. Anyway, she smelled really good, so I asked what she was wearing, and she pulled a small bottle out of her purse and let me spray it on. The fragrance with Lauren by Ralph Lauren. I liked the way it smelled on me, so I went to the store and bought my own bottle. It would become my first "stolen" fragrance.
Lauren became my signature fragrance for the next couple of years. It is a vast departure from all my other fragrances. Instead of light and sweet it was woody and pretty strong. To this day, it is the strongest fragrance I have ever worn. I only use a tiny dab of it. I still have a bottle of it from back then, and once in a while, in the winter, I spray some on.
I always liked Lauren very much, and still do. But I never truly loved her. She just wasn't the right fit for me. Too many rules. Did I spray on too much? Is this the wrong season? I don't like rules.
The first fragrance I ever fell in love with was Sweet Honesty.
If you were a girl growing up in the 1970s, you and your mother had plenty of Avon in the house. Sweet Honesty was their scent for adolescent girls. It was very sweet and light. I loved the way it smelled on me. But the best part was it often came in cool little bottles. I had both of the ones pictured here. The furry teddy bear (my favorite) and the deer. They were necessary staples that doubled as decor on my dresser throughout middle school. Truth be known, those empty bottles may still be at my dad's house somewhere.
My youthful affair with Sweet Honesty lasted for a few years. Even into my early high school days. Then l guess I just outgrew her. It was time for me to move on.
Sweet Honesty didn't just represent a young and innocent time in my life, it also represented a time in history. True, there were serious matters going on in the world, but in middle-class suburbia, the mid-70s was a great time for a young girl to live, love, and discover the world around her. Everything seemed so simple to me back then.
To the best of my knowledge, Avon no longer sells the fragrance.
They say you never forget your first love. I will never forget Sweet Honesty and I will always love her.
For me, women's fragrances are broken up into three categories:
About 75% of them give me an excruciating headache.
About 24% of them smell really nice on other people, but when I try them for myself, they give me an excruciating headache.
About 1% of them work very well for me, in which case I typically become quite attached.
I was getting dangerously low on my current favorite, so that was essentially all I asked for this past Christmas. Just get me a bottle of my perfume. It seemed like a simple enough request. So I was totally devastated when I got the news that the designer had stopped making it.
A signature fragrance is hard to find. Once you find it, you fall in love with it. It shares your most intimate moments. It touches your most intimate parts. You tend to stay with it a very long time, and may only have a few in your lifetime. This makes it much like a lover. Perhaps that is why it is so hard when the relationship ends. Especially if you weren't quite ready for it. After all, break ups are much easier to get over if it was your idea.
This led me to reminisce about fragrances I have loved in the past. I decided it would be an interesting mini series to talk about the ones I have worn, and where I was in my life when I loved them. Stay tuned--my next entry will uncover he the mystery behind the fragrance.
How ironic it is, that we can feel so out of control when it comes to the one thing we actually have control over in this world.
I'm talking about diet and exercise. Taking care of our bodies.
We can't control what other people do. We can't control what happens to us. The only thing we actually have any control over at all is what we put in our bodies in the way that we take care of them. So why does eating sensibly and getting exercise seem so impossible?
One of my favorite shows on television is "The Biggest Loser". Tonight was makeover week. It was a very powerful episode. I watched as the contestants transformed, and my favorite player Sonya looking so fabulous, said she had never felt beautiful in her entire life until now. How moving it was to watch her find that beautiful place--to put on a dress that complimented her figure, to have fresh hair and make up. It reminded me of myself a couple of years ago. That's when I discovered myself the same way. I felt pretty for the first time in a long time. Confident. Worthy.
In the past few months I have lost that confidence. I have gained too much weight. I'm heavier than I ever have been in my life, including full-term pregnancy. I have battled this bizarre rash and it's side effects for 2 1/2 months. I don't feel worthy of pretty things or doing things for myself. I didn't buy a fall/winter wardrobe. Nothing new. When I finally did use some Christmas money to order some boots online, I could not get them zipped around my large calves. The realization that I had to send them back caused my thinking to become incredibly distorted. Everything I have worked so hard for when out the window. I started thinking "What's the use? Just go gray. Cut off the nails. Get as fat as you want. Then just go buy a bunch of old lady clothes. Fuck it. What's the use anyway"?
Tonight I think I found a little inspiration within myself. Watching the contestants, I remember how good it felt to have that self-discovery and find my inner and outer beauty, and feel confident and good about myself. I want that back. Maybe I have the motivation I need now to get back on the road. One step. One foot in front of the other.
So tonight I learned that yet another of my all-time favorite restaurants has gone out of business. Just one in a long line of many. This made me start to connect the dots. Everything I'm used to, everything I enjoy, has faded away. My favorite hamburger joint, my favorite Italian spot, and now my favorite place for fish. The founder and bass player for my favorite band, AC/DC is in a nursing home. My favorite fragrance was recently discontinued by the designer.
At what point do you just accept the fact that you, and everything you like has become irrelevant?
A codependent person is one who has let another person's behavior affect him or her, and who is obsessed with controlling that person's behavior.
The following two "Detach" journal entries will give you a crash course:
"An Answer to a Prayer" dated Nov 1, 2008 "How Did We Wind Up Here?" dated Nov 2, 2008
About This Journal
In 2008 I had the life changing realization that there was a name for what I'd always felt was "wrong" with me. After 20 years of thumbing through various self-help books. I learned about codependence.
I began writing this journal to document my journey out. Over time, it's evolved into something more. While I still talk about codependence (I know now, it will never totally leave me), this blog has turned into the thumbprint of my life; a therapeutic journal for me to sort out a lifetime of thoughts and memories. I believe in being honest with myself and others, and when something is bothering me, I reach out. With a support team of strong, smart women surrounding us, we can all continue to grow. I'm trying to live my best life, in pursuit of a Healthy Mind, a Healthy Body.