I am Never Going to the Mall Again.

First, a thirty minute drive. Mall is huge, extremely crowded, and extremely noisy. I debate going back to my car, but I must. find. a bridesmaid dress TODAY. On a mission!

I visit 4 different stores, 3 of them being department stores in which I have to walk about 20 miles to even find the section I am looking for. I get lost twice, finally figuring out where the mall entrance is from the store I’m in.

No luck, no dress that fulfills the requirements of my dear friend and bride-to-be.

Feeling discouraged, I proceed to leave and visit non-department stores. As I walk to find these stores, about six different times someone almost runs into me or almost touches me. I feel slightly overwhelmed and want to go hide in a corner where there are no people.

But I press on, because I must find a dress. I visit stores like Express, Loft, Forever 21, Charlotte Russe, and a few prom dress shops. Each time I enter a store, I try to actually sneak in and hide behind clothing displays so that the salesperson will not see me. I do not want to be greeted, and I do not want to say hi back to someone who greets me. I especially do not want to be talked to or helped. At this point I just want any human I see to get away from me as quickly as possible before I bite them.

My sneaking attempts fail every time, and I am therefore greeted and asked what I am looking for about 12 times. I somehow manage to not punch anyone in the face as I say “Hello” in a tone that I hope conveys the fact that I desire them to leave. me. ALONE.

I have not found a dress in any of the 200 places I have visited thus far with 500 sections of clothes each that I have pawed through with my eyes peeled for anything in the color of navy.

I have excitedly picked up about 67 hangers of navy clothing items that I thought were going to be “the dress” but ended up being a belly shirt or a baby onesie.

My feet hurt very badly as a result of walking the equivalent of 5,000 football fields around this mall.

People and small children keep almost bumping into me or staring at me, both of which make me extremely uncomfortable.

I have a headache. Each store I have gone into is playing different loud music that makes me want to throw up because of its’ ridiculous, head-spinning obnoxious dub-step electronic rap techno metal head-banging country indie pop orchestra ensemble.

Finally my feet start walking (without my consent) into a store. My eyes are glazed over and I am feeling lightheaded and a bit dizzy, not knowing exactly what I am there to do. The salesperson full of energy says “HI! What can I help you find today?! Anything specific? Did you know about our buy one get one half off deal today? Also everything in the store is free!” I do not even acknowledge her because my heart is set and my mouth drooling at the sight of a bench with a pink cushion sitting in the corner by the shoes. I slowly walk over and sit on the bench. It is the most glorious feeling in the world. I stare at the wall of shoes in front of me. I study the different types of boots and mentally categorize them into colors, shapes, whether or not they would look good with this or that outfit, and what type of heel they have. I then do the same for the flats and sneakers. It is a beautiful time. I do not remember how long I sit there, but I know that I never want to leave this bench.

Somehow I find myself no longer on the bench and in more stores, racking through hangers of things that are not even the color navy, and staring off into the distance as I think of how badly I desire to be in my car in silence.

I am angry that my body has decided to stop sitting on the bench and drag me around like a puppet into places I do not wish to go.

I do not remember how many more stores I visited after the bench, for somewhere along the way I lost track of who I am and where I am going and all goals for my life, and all my hopes and dreams.

Right now, I am sitting on my couch, in my house, in the quiet, with no idea how I got here. My car is sitting in the driveway so I must have driven it home. But I do not remember anything about my travels.

I do not have in my possession a navy blue chiffon bridesmaid dress.

As I sit here thinking about my encounter the mall, I have become aware of something that must have occurred that helped me not collapse and die in the mall. No, two things.

Two things must have kept me somewhat sane during this time:

1. The Teavana samples I sipped for 3-minutes

2. Spraying a sample sheet with the cologne my boyfriend wears and inhaling it as I walked

I would like to take this opportunity to say that I deeply, truly, madly love and cherish: not going to malls.

In summary:

1. Malls + me = no.
2. I like tea and Gregg Rosenboom.

and 4. Writing is therapy. I feel so great now about the fact that I almost died while shopping for a dress that I did not actually purchase and still must purchase.

This has been Special Moments with Hannah: Shopping Edition. Please, if you see me in the next few days, be gracious and kind, remembering that I have suffered severe trauma and could possibly still be a bit traumatized.

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