The dress in my dreams finally manifested into my reality.
For two years, I’ve been having this dream about walking barefoot through the yard of our homestead towards the mailbox to check the mail, along a row of bamboo blowing in the breeze. 100% of the time, I’m wearing a dress. You know, the kind of Hippie, artsy and slightly exotic sundress that half the women at the Farmer’s Markets usually wear?
Those of you who know me know that I really don’t own dresses, and only occasionally wear a skirt that was either found on the giveaway table or given to me by a friend. Most of the time I wear mismatched clothes and usually shorts and t-shirts, or turtlenecks in the fall and winter. I’m not a very stylish gal, and never wear makeup – the only makeup I own is a Burt’s Bees tiny lipstick that was 50% off in a store I visited 6 years ago (I wear it maybe 2 x’s a year on special occasions). I own two dresses that both still fit: one from 8th grade graduation (I’m 27 now), and one from a going-out-of-business sale near Mackinaw Island Michigan in 2003 from a man who said I had to own this beach dress because “women have fantasies wearing this dress! It’s perfect for you!” But I only wear it at the Botanical Garden’s annual Firefly Festival, since it’s one of few socially acceptable places to dress in costume and gown (although one Halloween I dressed up as a beach girl and sat freezing on the roof of the house where the party was held, escaping the crowd).
My wedding dress is actually a bridesmaid’s two-piece, not a dress, and the top never fit me right so all I have is the long skirt which I sometimes twirl around the house in. When I was in 4th grade my best friend was a tough-as-nails beautiful tomboy who almost always wore dresses, while I was a shy bookish girly girl who loved rainbow unicorns and wore pants. Dresses were evil, they represented discomfort, itchy lace, and women’s slavery etc etc…
So that’s all folks – 2 dresses and 1 lipstick, all about half as old as I am!
But lately I’ve realized that living the dream means…well, living the dream! I want to live as though we were already in our earthbag home, and in many ways, this is possible – like wearing my tattered old straw hat, and the dress I keep seeing in my dreams. Going off-grid on a homestead is more than just solar panels and clucking chickens. It’s also about being the healthiest person I can be, and fully expressing myself creatively. It means being one with the earth and actually enjoying the clothes I wear, as though I were painting a canvass upon myself and dancing in it.
Dresses also allow more circulation in the abdominal region (no belts, buttons or zippers putting pressure around my hips) and I feel it may help heal my cyst and my intestines. So I was thrilled when my dream dress suddenly appeared in my life while I was volunteering to teach people how to make their own prayer flags for the Himalayan Mountain Shop during the Block Street Block Party, a festival of true Fayetteville culture. Together with other volunteers, we raised $642 for the Chuney Gompa Monastery in Bhutan to help the young monks living there. It was this incredibly spiritual, artistic experience for me, and it cemented the concept that what we wear is an expression of who we are, a reminder of who we want to be, and an enabler for better health.
I ended up walking home with the dress from my dreams, completely surprised and astounded that it existed in reality. Thank you, Himalayan Mountain Shop, for helping with my healing this month! Check out their shop on Block Street for some life-changing experiences