Over the last several years, my wardrobe has shifted from about half skirts to mainly skirts to, now, almost exclusively skirts. Sometimes this makes me feel a bit sheepish because I worry what people might think of me. After all, it’s not all that normal for a 21st century American woman to wear only skirts.
What if people think I’m that Christian–the one who feels called to wear only skirts as a religious practice, and who probably also feels called to cover her head at church and submit in all things to her husband? Well, if you follow this blog or know me personally, you know that’s not me (if this is you, let me say, I respect your decision and your convictions, especially as they require you to go against the grain of the culture, which takes strength and self-assurance).
It’s silly, really, that I should worry what acquaintances might think this of me. But at the same time, I do desire my outward appearance to reflect my inner beliefs. That’s part of why I choose not to shave my legs or armpits–it’s my physical rebellion against the rigid, arbitrary, and often hurtful restrictions that our male-centric culture puts on women’s bodies, as if the culture at large has some right to dictate what women do with their own bodies. I hate shaving, and I don’t think I should feel “required” to, so I don’t.
And I wear skirts for some of the same reasons–comfort and personal preference–though wearing skirts doesn’t pack the political punch that not shaving does. I find it ironic that trousers for women were originally part of the feminist movement in America as well as a practicality for working women in some professions, but now, so many of the trousers made for women are so uncomfortable and impractical. I mean, skinny jeans? Seriously, if I try to cross my legs in those, my leg falls asleep from the knee down. And I hate that thing where every time you bend over in low-rise jeans, your butt half falls out of your pants and your underwear shows and when you stand back up, you have to tug on the back of your jeans to get re-situated. And wedgies. And tight waistbands that restrict movement and cause muffin tops, which I’m not against aesthetically, but it’s just not comfortable for me to have my fat pushed out and over my pants like that. I’m not willing to allow fashion to make me uncomfortable in my clothes, and I’m not one to choose sweatpants or leggings every day (if you are, more power to you!), so I choose skirts, which I find absolutely comfortable.
And you know what else? This is true for some men’s fashions, too, and though I think fashion-conscious men probably have more comfortable choices than women, I think that men should be able to wear skirts, too, if they want. I mean, I love the way skirts feel, and I bet if it were socially acceptable, some men would also choose skirts over trousers. So that’s part of my stance, too: skirts for all!