Some of the most fabulous women out there are the ones that constant reinvent themselves. I have always admired women who have said “nope…this isn’t me anymore.” Then actually did something about it. That was the purpose of this blog reinvention into a more glamorous and elegant version of myself. But mainly I just liked to make snarky comments about the stuff contained in all my charm school “text books”.
My favourite reinvention story is that of Miss Sabrina Fairchild. A “plain” (dress her down as much as you want…Audrey Hepburn was a one of a kind. Nothing plain about her) chauffeurs daughter madly in love with a member of the wealthy family her father works for. She gets shipped off to Paris to attend culinary school and comes back a sophisticated and charming young woman. Not only determined to win her man, but also confident in herself.
The last 5 years have seen a lot of changes happen in my life. I was once a busy wife and mother and business woman and board member and charity president who was always running around doing something. Then I had a nervous breakdown, lost all of my friends, we started homeschooling our daughters, made new friends, started millinery, separated from my husband (though we still live and raise our beautiful, intelligent, emotionally magnificent daughters together – we are still puzzling how we ended up with such happy and well adjusted children when we are such fuck ups!) and came out. I tried dating (girls have soft lips!). I let go of some of my vintage purist ideals for things I actually wanted to wear. Then the biggest thing that happened was my brain broke. I started disassociating and ended up literally being part completely new blank slate person and party old me. It’s pretty weird.
This is reinvention.
I was stumbling for a bit. Trying to do things old me liked to see if it would jolt back into place. Some of it has…some not so much. Things are mostly settled now but it turns out I just couldn’t reattach myself to my name.
Now is my chance. My chance to completely reinvent myself from my name up. I asked my ex to start calling me random names anytime he spoke to me. I asked the internet. And eventually I asked my best friend. I really should have started there. She suggested two names. Both were on my list.
Catherine the Great. Catherine De Medici. Cate Blanchett. Katharine Hepburn. And Saint Catherine….the patron saint of Milliners.
The other, Elizabeth (some more fabulous Queens) and my beloved Nana’s name. My second daughters middle name.
Of course I couldn’t actually give up my birth middle name. Anne. Sort of a family tradition. First born females on my fathers side have Anne as a middle name. My eldest daughters middle name is Anne. I couldn’t lose that connection.
Catherine Anne Elizabeth.
I am currently in Sydney with my best friend who named me. She had surgery yesterday and I am here to help out. Yesterday, even when overcome with drugs and pain, she called me Cate when she talked to me. I realised in that moment that I had a true friend. One that loved me entirely as I was…even when that person changed. I love her a lot. She gave me something very precious and I will carry it with me probably for the rest of my life.
Change is inevitable. Reinvention is beautiful. And now if I ever decide to change my last name I have something that goes with “Fairchild”!
Miss Sabrina Fairchild xoxo
(but you can call me Catherine)