Finding My Style And Myself Again

By Jess
8 Mar 2022

Outfit details.

Finding My Style And Myself Again

I posted this outfit to my Instagram stories over the weekend and it seemed to resonate with a lot of you. And I think it might have been less about the outfit and more about my goal for the outfit. I was headed to my first group gathering/party in 2+ years. I wanted to look put together but also feel comfortable. A feel good outfit that was also no fuss. I live in Vermont too. Heels aren’t really a thing (honestly I’m fine with it!). The converse were a bit of a miss, we are approaching mud season and I had to tiptoe through the parking lot at the brewery. Otherwise I think I nailed it.

Lately I’ve found myself sort of fumbling back towards my personal style.

Through motherhood and then pandemic, I lost my way a bit. I find myself staring into my closet and then trying on 15 different things and not loving any of it. I still have a lot of pieces in my wardrobe from pre-baby that don’t fit me anymore. They’re not going to fit me again. But I can’t seem to let go of them. I don’t really know why. I’ve just been, uninspired.

Maybe there’s still a little part of me that’s clinging on to who I was pre-baby. The little pang of nostalgia for that old life and those old clothes that no longer serve me. It feels weird to say that because I don’t want that old life back, but sometimes I miss it too. I get the feeling there’s an expectation that once our child reaches a certain age we should be “over it.” Like you can only mourn your old life when your baby is still a baby.

This weekend at the party, the first one I’ve been to in SO long, I felt myself coming back. That old me, pre-baby me, she’s been a little bit buried from the last two years of operating in survival mode. For those few hours, I was just there. Deep in conversation with other women. Undistracted. Laughing. Listening. Absorbing.

The next day I started cleaning out my closet. Slowly but surely, I’m finding my style and myself again.

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14 Comments

  1. Lindsay wrote:

    Thank you, thank you. Uninspired is exactly how I’ve been feeling and trying to figure out what to wear and who I am. For years I worked in an office environment and enjoyed putting a new outfit together and the energy of the people around me. This is no longer at option with the company I’ve been with for 18 years and I’m still trying to figure out how to mimic that feeling and actually give two f’s into my appearance. There are good days and there are blah days but I own them and reflect on them. Add to the fact that I am finally letting my hair go natural with its gray glory I’m feeling the insecurity at times. All that to say is thank you for seeing me and describing what I believe many of us are feeling.

    3.8.22 | Reply
    • Jess wrote:

      Totally relate to this Lindsay. I had to figure out who I was and what my style would look like when I left my corporate job. There have been so many evolutions of personal style in my life but more recently I’ve been in a rut with feeling good in what I wear and also just getting excited about getting dressed. Nice to know I’m not along on that one.

      3.8.22 | Reply
  2. Erica wrote:

    My kids are now 5.5 and almost 7. I definitely went through this closet purge/reclaiming my sense of style when they were older than Marin. I think it took me until they were 2 and 3 years old and I still find myself losing my way when it comes to my closet sometimes. And I absolutely still mourn the pre-baby me, even though I love my kids with all my heart. I especially miss the beach vacations where I rocked a bikini without a thought and we went from beach to grabbing a drink to taking a late afternoon nap before heading out to dinner. Ahh, maybe it’s the winter days that have me longing for the sun and sand!

    3.8.22 | Reply
    • Jess wrote:

      Ugh man I feel this. Kelley and I were just talking about these dark days of winter that really start to take a toll. I think we are all really ready for some sun and sand.

      3.8.22 | Reply
  3. Naila wrote:

    Yes, yes! I’ve been telling people that ever since my son turn to life feels like it’s getting some sort of normalcy back. It’s likely related to the pandemic for us as well, the timing, but it feels so rejuvenating to have glimpses of my old life back. And I’m having the same struggle with getting dressed and understanding my style as it’s changed over the past two years, glad I’m not alone.

    3.8.22 | Reply
    • Jess wrote:

      Yes absolutely relate to this. Those tiny snippets of normalcy and connection are so amazing. I think is a discovery period for so many of us right now.

      3.8.22 | Reply
  4. I’ve been trying to figure this out, too! My toddler will be entering school in the fall and I will likely be going back into the office more frequently than I have been at that point. I’m still trying to narrow down a comfortable, stylish uniform, but I feel like I’m more on my way!

    3.8.22 | Reply
    • Jess wrote:

      It so nice when find those pieces that make you feel good. Such an incredible feeling. I love having a wardrobe that’s easy but also makes me happy. Finally feeling ready to start figuring that out again.

      3.8.22 | Reply
  5. Andrea H wrote:

    I think we are in the midst of a pretty radical sartorial shift, which has impacted how I see my style/get dressed too. The pandemic threw everyone into loungewear, and the next iteration of that seems to be comfort + style forward items like loose trousers, oversized silhouettes, etc. Add in changing denim styles and it almost feels overwhelming! The learning curve is definitely greater right now, but hopefully not for too long.

    3.8.22 | Reply
  6. Veronica wrote:

    I relate to this so much post-pandemic and postpartum! Loved this.

    Relatedly, I’ve been loving your content lately. Feels so authentic and relatable. Thank you.

    3.8.22 | Reply
  7. Taylor wrote:

    I am a new mom of two months…this was refreshing to hear, to hear that it is normal to look and feel different. And thank you for normalizing the “not looking the same.” Because some people can’t “bounce back” after baby. It is hard to put away my skinny high rise Madewell jeans but really I’d rather look ahead than backwards…and I give myself permission to buy the next size up rather than lament my old body. It’s SO hard to do, but just reading this post and its comments is very reassuring. Power to all the other mamas reading this post and feeling the same!

    3.8.22 | Reply
  8. Heather wrote:

    Hello Jess,

    I think your story resonates with many of us mothers. Having a baby undoubtedly comes with significant change, good and bad. I like to think of it like metamorphosis. At first, you feel like your whole world flopped over, literally overnight, and your former self/freedom/friends/identity etc. are in the rearview mirror. It took me a long time to start feeling as though I had some freedom— everything in my life was tailored to my kids, now ages 9 (twins) and 6. I was 30 pounds heavier, didn’t want to wear flattering clothes, and my house was packed with everything for underdeveloped little humans. I rarely went to restaurants anymore, and forget shopping, concerts, or other places with a lot of activity. Although my kids are my world, it wasn’t until last year when began to have some independence (or separateness) again. I want to thank you for you blog. It was one of the catalysts that helped me redefine my style, start redoing my home, hanging out with friends (of course with their kids, too), and partake in activities I personally enjoy without feeling too guilty. I feel more confident than ever, even before having children. Plus, I have a family as my foundation. Everything will evolve for you, and things will continue to change for you as your daughter gets older. You will find your stride in each stage but, beware, it goes fast! 🙂

    3.10.22 | Reply
  9. Kimberly wrote:

    100% this.

    I had a baby this past summer and being pregnant plus a pandemic (with not leaving the house for a job, for dinner out, for parties at friends, for even grocery shopping) and now my slightly different postpartum body has led to me living almost exclusively in leggings and sweats, with oversized sweaters being my “chic” item. I had a tent dress moment (bought 5) at the peak of pregnancy last summer, but I have no idea what I will want to wear or what I will feel good in this summer. I am not sure “who I am” fashion-wise right now. Am I a ripped jeans and tees mom? Am I a flowy dress mom? I am currently a leggins and sweats mom, but in my mind I am going to wear more “real” clothes once we emerge from the pandemic a bit more.

    Trying to embrace the evolution and experimentation that will likely be the next few years as I settle into my new role, my body, and post-pandemic life where I venture out of my house and into society.

    Thanks, Jess. I love your blog.

    3.11.22 | Reply
  10. Lynn wrote:

    I just came across this while I was trying to find your new Birkenstocks that my toes constantly hang over the top lip. Anyway it strongly hit me hard and resonated with me in a very different way. I’m older now and although the number is quite correct , I see the younger me in cutoffs and sandals going to live concerts . I miss that me and I too understand that I don’t want that life back that I had out with my friends until the wee hours and still lonely for a home life with a reliable nice partner. I understand what you said completely going from my life married and then single and figuring out just where I belonged and who I was . I’m still me, a bit wiser and a lot older but I’ve found myself along my journey xoxo

    6.15.22 | Reply