Nothing Says Woman Quite Like a Dress, by Diana T. Kilarjian

Marcus Grodi: I Have Come to Believe and to Know
December 20, 2018
Vatican Conference Grapples With Issue of Decommissioning Churches, Edward Pentin
December 20, 2018

Editor’s note: Pictured above is “The Serenade” painted by Federico Andreotti (1847-1930).

By Diana Takouhi Kilarjian, Crisis Magazine, December 20, 2018

I emerged from the womb thrilled to be a girl! I tell you, I came into the world wearing the sweetest little dress with black patent leather shoes and a matching handbag. Like the surprise and exhilaration and gratitude one feels at being chosen for the most favorite part in the school play, from my earliest recollections, I had this sense of being feminine, of being different from my brothers. I was vividly aware and so delighted in my otherness and the gift of my girl-ness, that with my toddler-level understanding I fully “owned” it and rejoiced in it.

Growing up, though pants were part of my attire, I was very much at home in skirts and dresses. Attending Catholic grammar school for 5 years and high school for 4 years, I had the daily conditioning with my school uniform which was a skirt and blouse or in the summer a dress. It wasn’t something I thought a lot about. But had I been asked, I probably would have said I felt most myself in a dress or skirt. Note that I did not say necessarily the most comfortable, but the most myself…