I didn’t own a pair of jeans until I was 11. True story. And for a while I told people it was because I didn’t like the way they felt, so instead I rocked leggings and jean overalls (I was truly a hot mess as a child). But it wasn’t because I didn’t like the way they felt. Mostly it was because … and be prepared to laugh … I was worried I wouldn’t be able to unbutton/zipper them while going to the bathroom at school. Go ahead … I’ll give you some time to soak that dysfunction in. Sigh. (Side bar: I only recently got the balls to tell my family the true reason behind my disdain for jeans as a child … it only took a decade or so and a half bottle of wine, but the truth was revealed. They laughed. Hard.)
So at age 11, my sister had enough of having me in her life looking a hot/freakish mess and drug me to Old Navy to buy me my first pair of jeans. I ended up getting the most traditional jeans one could find, and I remember them being a size double zero in boot cut style. From that point on, I was hooked … and could absolutely unbutton AND zipper them every time I went to the bathroom at school. Boo-yah!
But one pair of Old Navy jeans (I’m sure they were like $19.99), spiraled me into a jean obsession throughout my teenage years. Old Navy turned into Gap. I remember I cried when I went from a size 2 to a size 4 in Gap jeans when I was 14. Why my mother didn’t backhand me, I have not the slightest idea. The woman is a saint, what can I say.
My addiction became worse once I saw rich, popular girls strutting around the halls of my school in what was known as “designer jeans (hey, remember the 2000s?).” I’m pretty sure I sold my soul for a pair of Mavi’s in the 8th grade. And then there was that time when I made my mom buy me a pair of Lucky Brand jeans with the pockets faded on the ass, that were SO low, like B. Spears low, I still have back problems from slouching in my chair in high school so no one saw my crack. Oh yeah … and it said “get lucky” when you unzipped the zipper. Jesus. CHRIST. I was 15.
Every summer my mom and I went to NYC for some “back to school” shopping. And as a true jean addict, I had to go check out the boutique where the freaking Olsen twins bought their jeans at in SoHo … clearly. And that is when … :::covers face::: … my mom bought my 16-year-old self, a $300 (yep … drink that number in) pair of jeans. One pair of jeans. For $300. My ass had no business being in a pair of $300 jeans. Hell, my 28-year-old ass has no business RIGHT NOW being in a pair of $300 jeans. Again … maybe I slipped my mom some crack, I don’t really recall, but the woman is a fucking saint.
I cringe when I think about that moment. I just remember my mom being so happy because those jeans made ME so happy (did I mention the woman is a fucking saint?). And now, as a 28-year-old adult who buys her own clothes, I have trouble splurging on a pair of $60 jeans, let alone a $300 pair. I’ve secretly wanted to write my mother a check for $300 to pay her back from those stupid, overpriced jeans. I think it will cleanse my soul.
Jeans for me right now can be defined as $25.99 black skinny jeans from H&M. That’s as far as I go. As a recovering designer jean addict, I don’t give jean sections at stores the time of day. For a while I was thinking it was because jean shopping is oh so overwhelming, but then after a lot of thought I realized, “holy shit, do I not like jeans anymore?!”
It came to me when I was reading “I’ll Drink To That,” by Betty Halbreich (if you haven’t read this book, do it, this woman is a BOSS). A boyfriend of hers insisted she bought her first pair of jeans. As a proper lady, she never wore pants because it was a huge no-no back in the day (God,I was born in the wrong decade). And at an attempt to invest in a pair, she failed miserably, because, at the end of the day, she hated jeans. And that’s when it hit me, “I’m not a jeans wearing kind of gal anymore.” Amen, Betty, amen.
Jeans have just made me yawn recently. Unless I’m rocking them with a pair of fierce heels, I may or may not fall asleep. Jeans are great for running errands, doing shit around the house, but otherwise, there are way more productive things to spend your money on. Maybe one day, if I had some kids and a family, my ass will make their way into a pair of “mom jeans” … bahahaha I kid, I kid … I would rather die. And if I HAVE to rock a pair of jeans, I’ll go for my faves from Forever 21 for $10. Sure you can only wear them once or twice, but they are $10! You heard it. $10. (Ps. I could have bought 30 pairs of them with that money my mom spent on that awful $300 pair … I’ll never stop being ashamed … perhaps I need therapy).