Chapter 41: Business Clothing Disassociation
Empress and Her Spectacle: Business Clothing Disassociation
At first, I didn’t notice how frequent this occurrence is. This might be because I view my style as an extension of my inner selves. When I get home from work, my instincts have me drop my outfit off my body. I disrobe faster than caffeine depletes while pulling an all-nighter. It’s become a ritual just to remove my business wear and sink into my gem decorated bed. Why is that? I reflected on the signs of dissociation when you are working in a job you hate or work in a negative space.
A King Needs no Clothes:
I remember reading about how people in my economic bracket well run themselves poor trying to keep up with the status of their co-workers. I mean really quickly, I noticed how my co-workers had the latest apple gear, and how they dressed. I felt a severe amount of pressure to assimilate into a business casual caricature. I even bought the $160 Air-Pods and wore a JORD watch to keep up with them. I was a foolish mortal. Still even going to thrift stores, and shopping at Macy’s for business casual attire cost several not pretty pennies.
All this energy and wage put towards looking a part, but yet I get rid of this aesthetic as soon as I get home. Turns out, that no matter how cute my outfit is, and you know I do cute professional well. I can’t stand the caricature of what I dress like. I felt so performative that I reject the style I perform for a job I’ve come to despise. It got to the point that my mind and body do not want to associate with my current place of work. To give you better insight, I will keep on my outfits from other events, and when I’m home, I’m in no rush to take it off. The outfit ties me to a memory, and a feeling and I cherish it as long as my body cleanliness and odor allows. I’ll walk down the halls and chat or cook in those outfits. The cute outfits from work hardly see the interior of my house. They disappear and get packed away like a horrible secret.
As someone who exits in a visual expression world, it’s extremely telling that within the confines of my work life, that isn’t supportive or uplifting in any way, that I display this rejection so physically. For a long time, I refused wearing pink hair, and wasting my Fenty Beauty foundation. I was rebelling my presence and pink energy in such a negative space. The rebellion at first I thought was the corporation. A big fist of “F this establishment.” I was wrong the uprising was a message to myself. How I dress is so reflective of who I am, my mood, and my story. I quickly came to understand that I was finished, and my energy did not deserve this treatment.
The second thing to nudge me along the way of updating LinkedIn and dusting off the Resume was how much effort I put into making my desk space safe for me. It was so pink and cute, I was trying to create a safe space for me to exist in while I worked. The company ate that up, complimented how pink things were. Often very touchy feely with that space. I felt sick. No matter how pink it was I did not feel at home in my office space, but I kept trying to the point I bought a cactus mug for my pens and have a framed image of stretching from a friend for comfort. Nothing worked, I was decorating my torture chamber for what? For whom? It was another performative action that had me second guess my energy and effort in this space.
I was tired of it. Only recently did I start taking away my desk décor and organizers going back down the bare minimum. As my mother taught me, you start packing when you’re ready to bounce. Ever since my letter of resignation is pending as a draft. I’m prepared to leave and these signs as small as they were, are actually the loudest actions I have taken.
Have more thoughts? Email: Jadedisland@gmail.com