Finally it’s here -  my first audience at the Tribunal! Yikes!  I mean the very definition of the word is daunting, tribunal: a place or seat of judgement. It’s been three months since I filed for a separation; and due to the complicated process that is the Swiss legal system, I was only made aware of my pending court date a week before it was to take place. Even though I had been waiting for this day, I was still caught unawares. First I had to meet with my lawyer and prep, prep, prep! But my very next thoughts went straight to my closet and the pressing question of: WHAT WOULD I WEAR TO THE TRIBUNAL?

My lawyer’s advice – “don’t wear anything flashy!” Did he think I was going to show up in a hot pink tutu? No, this is Geneva not New York. Having lived here for the last twelve years, one thing is for sure, Geneva is very conservative in the fashion department. Normally, it doesn’t bother me, I am the kind of woman who lives by the Oscar Wilde quote “One can never be overdressed or overeducated.”

As I debated the merits of the items in my wardrobe, I found everything sorely lacking. I wanted to look like a young (ish) stay at home mom, but not frumpy like I had just come from the playground. At the same time, I wanted to look stylish, classic. Think Audrey Hepburn in Breakfast at Tiffany’s sans the big hat.

Since my funds were extremely limited (more about that later), I decided to stop into my favorite fast fashion place in Geneva, Zara. The stars were aligned because I immediately found the perfect navy blue shift dress and it was only 39.90!  Well within my tiny budget. I paid for the dress and made a quick exit, lest I be tempted to buy anything else.

I detest trying on clothes in the store, so I waited until I got home…

The fit was right, the color perfect and I felt, it made me look young, classic,  stylish, but at the same time serious. It looked amazing with the accessories I had chosen, everything was perfect except for the fabric! I could see myself now, already nervous by the situation having to restrain myself from fiddling with the irritating fabric. Would the judge think I had some type of nervous twitch? What was I going to do? It was Saturday night and the stores were closed and would remain so until Monday morning when I was expected at the Tribunal.

I don’t believe I slept much that night.  I woke up on Monday morning showered, dressed and applied my make-up just so. As I walked past the blue dress still on the hanger, I knew I had made the right decision, I just couldn’t risk being uncomfortable.

I walked out of the door ready for battle, armed with pearls,  my favorite Chanel, and killer Louboutins.

 - Submitted by Le Divorcée 

More about Le Divorcée: I am a nearly 40 year old American living in Geneva, Switzerland. I have two beautiful, smart, and kind children; and after 10 years of marriage my “happily ever after” came to a screeching halt! So I find myself going from a “Stepford” wife to Le Divorcée. You can read more about Le Divorcée's journey at:

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