This is even more important to my emotional state of mind following a tediously long stretch in the lab where we are not allowed to wear jewellery and/or make-up. Say what you want, but for some of us that leaves us feeling more vulnerable than standing naked on stage in front of thousands of people.
I think it's fairly natural to suggest that as a woman ages, she has feelings of doubt as to her sexuality and attractiveness. The diet, fitness and washed-up celebrity endorsement industries rely heavily on this phenomenon. Without our feelings of "less than perfect" there would be dozens of 80s sitcom supporting cast members working stage shows in the Poconos – not to mention a library of self-help books doing nothing but collecting dust.
On a personal level, I have found myself being remarkably surprised at how much I enjoy the transformation – and challenge of finding my "sexy" again. I work in an environment that doesn’t always allow me to feel remotely that way and so when the opportunity arises these days, I have this desire to make the most of it.
I don’t have a problem exploring what it takes to indulge in the sexual me and touching the line without crossing it. OK, some days I like it when that line is very grey; not quite 50 shades of grey, but fuzzy and not so easily identified.
I admit that I like the attention I receive from my Office Guys and some of the other men at work. I like the extended glances from the power suits and the flirty smiles in the hallways.
Does it define me as a woman? No; not in the least. What defines me as a woman is the love I have from my family, the role I play as a wife and a mother.
Some might think it is rather superficial – however, even the superficial in life has the power to influence one’s mood and add some positivity to a person’s self-esteem. And as much as we need the emotional fuel for the soul, we also need a little stroking here and there of the fragile outer ego.
A woman also wants to be appreciated for all those superficial, societal ideals – her style, her sexual prowess and willingness to play the combined role of Madonna and whore. We want to be respected for our intellect, but still lusted over. And we do want to catch you looking at our cleavage or checking out our legs in that miniskirt.
We don’t want to have to explain how all of that fits into this really complex double standard.
The other side of this relates to my husband. While I am not a fan of shopping, and often admit to having no sense of real style, he loves both – and I’m the lucky recipient of his passion for that. I have a closet full of great clothes thanks to him, and he constantly encourages me to step out beyond the standard comfy go-to clothes.
And those days when I am feeling a bit braver, slip on a nice dress and maybe some risqué lingerie underneath, I can count on a constant flow of suggestive and ego-boosting texts from him. It doesn’t hurt that if he thinks for a moment that another man may show a peaked interest, he becomes incredibly turned on. And it doesn’t hurt for a moment that all of those influences help ramp up my flirtatious courage.
All rewarding for me.
And one of the real benefits of having this forum to express myself on is that I can share what goes on in my mind, for better or worse. It helps me keep in touch with some of my own fantasies, think through some twisted ideas and plot out my scheme for global domination one stocking leg at a time ... hence your weekly treat of Thigh High Thursday.