The 7 Emotional Stages Of Transitional Dressing

That gray area between summer and fall can be a tricky thing. You can never really know how to dress for in between seasons, considering it's mostly just a gamble where you throw the die and hope for the best. You wake up in the morning and the wooly skies and crisp air call for cardigans and coffees spiked with nutmeg. But come afternoon, you're stuffing your sweater into your backpack, feeling the beginning of a farmer's tan happen as the sun beats down on you and your tank top. It's madness out there, and it can start to feel like a girl barely has a chance.

While transitional dressing can be annoying, however, the change is still exciting. By now we've had our fill of strawberry ice cream and mint juleps and are looking for something a little cozier and warmer. Before we can have all the plaid blankets and wool socks, though, we need to convince summer out the door. She either lingers around, popping in for surprise visits in the middle of the day and forcing us to carry coats in our hands, or she leaves in a tiff, making us wish our legs weren't quite so naked. Break ups are hard, man. Below are the seven emotional stages of trying to dress for in between weather, because you know it's a roller coaster.

1. Skepticism

Everything you know is a lie. As you stand in front of your window in the morning, scanning the quiet street with narrowed eyes, you know for a fact that you'll get duped at least three times today. You might as well haul half of your wardrobe in your backpack because you're going to be taking off sweaters in crowded subway stations and putting them back on as you run across side streets. Ready for the madness and wishing you had war paint (highlighter might do), you step away from the window and head into battle.

2. Enjoying The Eye Of The Storm

You step outside and can't help but smile a little. There's a briskness to the air that makes you think of gold leaves underneath your feet as you drink coffee out of styrofoam cups on park benches. Images of pumpkin pies and scratchy wools come to mind, and you get a little zing that always follows the excitement of change.

Then, as if on cue, the sun peeks out from underneath a cloud and blasts you with its fiery heat. Glaring, you stomp off.

3. Frustration

While it was all brisk breezes and gray sleepy skies this morning, it's now hot enough to make you wish you were a little more liberal with the deodorant this morning. Peeling off your sweater, you fan your face as you look for shade to squirrel away in. Instead of that hot chocolate you were craving, you might get a frozen yogurt instead.

4. Melting Like A Popsicle

You're trying to balance on one leg as you stuff your cardigan into your backpack, grumbling as the sun flexes its muscles and swelters the sky up another few notches. You have your light jacket wrapped around your waist, your small backpack is crammed with planners and light layers, and you're desperately wishing you didn't wear booties instead of flip flops.

Who doesn't love to pretend that they're not currently working on armpit stains the size of dinner plates? Blowing the sweaty bangs out of your eyes, you go find an air conditioned drugstore you can stand in.

5. Aaaand Now You're Freezing

As quickly as you blinked, the sun is over it and decides to peace out for the hour. In its place comes a snapping wind and a wave of goosebumps that have you scrambling back for your sweater. Trying not to pull the whole contents of your bag onto the pavement, you layer back up, trying to ignore the fact that your knit now smells like Life Savers and pen ink. Now that it's cold and you're bare legged, people are glancing down at your tight-less legs and shooting you disapproving, have-you-no-decency looks. Clamping down on the feeling that you deserve a scarlet letter, you hurry on home.

6. You Feel Your Mind Slowly Breaking

Once you get off the bus, you notice it's hot again, and seeing how you're decked out in a cardigan and light jacket, you're now getting looks that say, "Eager much?" Someone smirks at you, and that light eyebrow raise says, "Is pumpkin spice even out yet?"

Zipping your coat down and fighting the urge to throw back your head and scream, you take off the cargo jacket with barely-controlled rage.

7. Exhaustion

You make it back home, equal parts cold and sweaty. You're not sure what's happening to your body right now, but you're pretty sure you lost the battle, at least for today. Uncertain as to whether what you want is a pair of socks or a cold shower, you collapse on the couch and hope tomorrow will be a better day.

A better, colder, even-tempered day.

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