Burgundy is the color for this blog piece!

Yesterday I mentioned my guest blogger, Mary Hiland, writes “for the pure pleasure of it.” So I thought it would be fun for my readers if I include a piece of informal writing from Mary. She sent me this cute story, which I think a lot of women will be able to relate to — whether vision-impaired or sighted. Please take a few minutes to read and enjoy! 

Mary Hiland
 A relaxed photo of Mary Hiland and her dog seated outside a brick storefront on a bench


A Personal Essay By Mary Hiland

“My Burgundy Best” 


Do you have a dress in your closet that you pine over? 

I do.  It’s a gorgeous burgundy sheath, slit up to the knee on the left, form-fitting with narrow straps, with a bolero jacket that lends elegance as well as modesty.  Fourteen years ago, I wore this dress in my daughter’s wedding.

I had scoured the city for an appropriate dress, but I refused to wear the tents in boring colors that were shown as mother-of-the-bride dresses.  I understood that the mother is to wear beige and blend into the wallpaper, but that just wasn’t going to happen in this wedding.  Fortunately, my daughter agreed.  I am a small woman, so when I tried on these flowing ensembles, they looked like nightgowns on me.  I was not going to wear a nightgown to my daughter’s wedding.   

Her colors were burgundy and pink, and while burgundy is my color, I didn’t want to compete with the bridesmaids.  Did I really want to wear pink?  A pink nightgown?  When we finally spotted the perfect dress, it was burgundy.   But my daughter assured me that it wouldn’t look like I was trying to be another bridesmaid.  I have to admit that I looked like a million bucks in that dress, especially when one guest remarked to his wife that I reminded him of Audrey Hepburn!   

I felt like her too, head held high, shoulders back, tummy tucked in, and enjoying every minute of that regal walk down the aisle.

Now, when I notice that dress, hanging in the back of the closet, I lift the hanger, caress the shiny fabric, and am transported back to that joyous day.  Could I still fit into this slim little number?  I use it as a measure of weight control.  If I could still wear the dress, then I’m doing all right.

With cautious hope, I slip it off the hanger, slide the long zipper down the back, and step into it.  Carefully, holding my breath, I manage to pull it up over my hips without ripping the zipper.  Good.  I slip the straps over my shoulders.  Now for the test.  I slowly zip it up the back, and I am relieved that it closes without too much strain over my midriff.  With some trepidation, I pull it all the way up the back.  I’ve made it!  But could I actually wear it?  If I kept my stomach pulled in, held my breath all evening, did not sit down, and did not eat a bite of food, I might. 

The goal is set.  Five more pounds, and I’m Audrey again.


Profile of Mary Hiland

Mary Hiland, a native of Cincinnati, lives in Gahanna, Ohio with her Seeing Eye®dog, Dora. She is recently retired as Executive Director of The American Council of the Blind of Ohio. 

Hiland’s passions are reading, public speaking, cycling, cross country skiing, swimming, hiking, and taking long walks with her Seeing Eye ® dog. She writes for the pure pleasure of it.

Ms. Hiland has been published in “Chicken Soup for the Parent’s Soul, Red Book Magazine, The Toastmaster Magazine, and The Columbus dispatch. Her own blog is seeingitmyway.com


Do you have a similar story? What piece of clothing do you long to take out and admire and yes, try to fit into time and time again? Share it in the comments below. 

You have just read “My Burgundy Best” by Mary Hiland. © October 30, 2017 by Mary Hiland. Please take a minute to read and comment, then SHARE this story in your feed. Thanks! 

Mary Hiland – My Burgundy Best
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