Posted by: sistermom1 | December 2, 2011

More Challenges

I donated half of my closet today.  It was pretty difficult.  My clothing played a major role in my professional life, and in my self-identity.  These clothes have been hanging in my closet unworn for the past few years — taking up space and looking so beautiful.  It was nice to look at the clothes in that closet — lovely suits and dresses and fabulous pants.  I was hard for me to donate them, but I finally did.   My husband had to reach everything — and to be honest, he did not appreciate how hard it was for me to do this (being a traditional kind of man!)

It was an honor to do it.  My clothes went to a good organization which serves many people.  As the bags of shoes, suits, skirts, pants and dresses were carried away, I did feel like I was losing much of myself.  Many memories of past shopping trips and of receptions and meetings kept swimming in my head.  I realize that I am much more than my clothes, but having a wardrobe that was completely about my professional persona made this donation process very difficult. 

My wardrobe was beautiful, and now that I am in a wheelchair, most of my wardrobe does not fit my current lifestyle.  I am not yet back in those stilleto heels, and the body-conscious, close-fitting mini skirts don’t look good on me in a wheelchair.  Although I do love to watch make-over shows like “How do I Look?” and  “What Not To Wear”, these shows have not yet featured women who are wheelchair-bound.  (Maybe that’s a good idea for the producers at TLC or Lifetime TV.)

As my health challenges continue, I remain determined to look great — not just OK, but really great — in or out of my chair.  Gaining weight in my mid-section is a real possibility for me, so I have become more committed to working out every day.  It is amazing how quickly I can lose my flexibility, so I have adopted a new attitude —  that I am an athlete in training.  The exercises that my P/T Brandi shared with me a month ago are a real beginning.  Combined with my new series of therapy that started Tuesday, I will add something to the list of exercises every day so I can become stronger and more flexible.  Standing and walking again remain goals for me.  This journey/detour continues to force me to look at myself more closely every day, to research the latest on MS developments, to redefine success in my life, and to question everything that I do to make sure that I am really moving forward — even a little bit — every day.

I hope that whoever gets my clothes enjoys them as much as I did, if not more.  I hope that they make a difference in her life, that they help her move forward  — even a little bit.  From my wheelchair, I need a different silhouette to complement my figure, so another shopping trip is in order very soon….



  1. Reading your post made me chuckle a bit and think about my own closet! I too recently gave away a lot of clothes that I haven’t worn in a long time – mostly because they don’t fit, or are woefully out of date or just plain frumpy! I can’t say I love my wardrobe, and I am not a shopper, so finding something to wear is a constant challenge for me. There’s no color in my closet either — black, brown & navy doiminate my clothes choices! However, like you, I hope my contributions will bless someone and make a difference.

  2. I think it would be great for TLC to have a wheelchair dependant woman on a style show. Most women care about their appearance and care about style, whether or not they are ambulatory. That must have been hard donating your clothes though.

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