Thursday, January 9, 2014

Why I Wear Dresses To Church

I've had this nagging urge to speak the things that consume my daily thoughts lately. I have so many, you see, and so often I feel like I might explode if I don't get them out. I've got a lot of thoughts and opinions and consequently, a lot to say. And then I remembered I have this thing called a blog. This tiny little corner of the internet that's just for me to say whatever the heck I want. So here goes. 

I've been thinking about pants. Why? Because people keep talking about them. Specifically women. Mormon women. Wearing them to church. They blog about it. They have strong opinions about it. They speak their mind about it. Well I have opinions about it too--strong ones--so I'm gonna speak my mind about it. 

I wear a dress to church, every week, for three hours. Sometimes I wear a skirt. I'm uncomfortable and insecure because said dresses and skirts don't hide the rolls like my jeans and sweaters do. They cut into my waist (or lack thereof) and require me to shave my legs so as not to emotionally scar those around me. I rotate through three dress/skirt ensembles, the only three that fit me, and I constantly pray no one will notice I'm wearing the same one. Again. And when I get home after those three hours I peel those suckers off faster than you can say "breathe again."

And yet, I love it. There are almost zero occasions in my life outside of church that call for dress clothes. At no other time am I compelled to shave my legs, wear dressy boots or heels, maybe throw on some extra makeup and jewelry, and even sometimes curl my hair. I feel special on Sunday. Fancy. Beautiful. Classy. Which puts me in a different frame of mind. That I am special, and I'm going somewhere special that deserves something more, something better than the jeans I wore the day before, or even the slacks I wore to work the day before that. 

Does God care what I wear to church? Probably not. Does He appreciate that I'm showing Him respect and reverence and acknowledging that I am in a sacred, holy place by wearing special attire separate from the worldly garb I don every day? I believe He does. Would He be appalled and disgusted if I walked into Sacrament Meeting next Sunday in pants? No. But I believe He would be disappointed. Not about my attire, but about the message I'd be sending Him: that His house was not worthy of the best I had to offer. Is it about clothes? No. Is it about showing respect? Absolutely. 

Guess what else it's not about. Feminism. Ugh, I hate that word. Do you want to know a secret? I belong to a church where the president is always a man and where men hold a power and authority that women cannot. And you know what? There is nothing on this earth that has ever made me feel more special, more revered, more empowered as a woman, than that church. 

Do I need to wear pants to church to prove to myself and the world that I'm just as good as a man? Heck no. The only One I have anything to prove something to is my Heavenly Father, and I want Him to see me in my very best. Because He deserves nothing less. 

And THAT'S why I wear a dress to church.


AmyDane Designs said...

Wow Alicia...well written. This was awesome.

Caroline Leone said...

I dress up anytime I want because I respect me. The way I look sends a message to others. I dont care about church, I dont go any more. I dont need to please some white superior being who plays with human beings. I aim to please myself, nobody else.

Denise and Brandon said...

I don't believe anyone who wants to wear pants to church means any disrespect. We call it our "Sunday best" and that could be our best pair of dress pants. I don't really care to wear pants to church, but some just don't want to be judged for wanting to. They just want to be able to make the choice for themselves with what to wear, and not have social pressures make it for them.

Jodi said...

I love this post Alicia and feel completely the same way!!!! Thanks for posting. I haven't read a blog forever!

Arne' Mallow said...

yahoo, I love it!!! I am often asked why dress up for church--------------RESPECT is a glorious thing, many people in the world would be alot happier with respect for one's self and those around them!!