pretty in pink

Some people on a forum were talking about buying clothes that fit, and then a friend mentioned it in a comment on this blog. This should be listed on “you know you have diet mentality if…”

… if when shopping for clothes you buy them tighter than is comfortable because you “know” they’ll fit once you lose a bit of weight.

… if you refuse to try anything on and just purchase the biggest size you think will fit your body.

Remember when you were a kid and your mom would buy your shoes a half-size bigger? Or maybe she did that with your pants and shirts too. But it was “justified” because kids grow so fast and they’ll “grow into it”. Well, somewhere a long the way we started buying our clothes either enormous (to cover up our girth) or a size too small with the hopes of shrinking into them. News flash, you have stopped growing, so it’s time to start buying clothes that fit you right now. It’s time to stop walking around feeling uncomfortable and/or dumpy. It’s also time to realize that the size on the label should be ignored.

I’ve started taking my teenage daughter to a second hand shop to buy jeans. One of the wonderful things about this, other than the prices, is that we have access to many different styles/brands in the same size. What is she learning about this? The silly little number printed on the clothing means almost nothing because it can vary greatly from one brand to another.

I’m choosing to ignore those size numbers for the most part. All they are for me now is a ballpark to help me gauge which ones to take to the dressing room to try on. Recently I purchased a pair of slacks and a top for our annual family photo. I chose some that fit comfortably (not too baggy, not too tight), even though they were not the size I would like to see. We took our photos and I noticed that my face is more round than last year’s photo. At first, I was a bit disappointed, and then I decided to think of it another way. I decided that the roundness in my face is temporary and is simply a sign that I am healing and letting go of diet mentality.

Well, we had an event after the photo to attend and I went in the same outfit. The moment I walked in the door a woman commented, “You look so stylish!” It caught me off guard because I’ve never considered myself “stylish” – I love me a t-shirt and jeans. She had no idea how much I needed to hear something positive about my appearance. For years I’ve craved the attention of “losing weight”. And then it dawned on me, there is more than one way to help yourself look your best. It’s by dressing as though you matter. I don’t care what your budget is, there are probably things in your wardrobe that look better on you than others. Wear them. We need to stop going everywhere in over-sized (sometimes stained or torn) shirts, squeeze-me-in-half pants, and sneakers. I think it was in one of Geneen Roth’s books where she mentions that she had a really nice dress that she kept saving “for a special occasion”. She finally decided that she would wear it. I think she went grocery shopping in it lol.

I’ve had the same white, long-sleeved undershirt for 7 years. It is discolored and the ends of the sleeves started tearing up about a year or so ago. I finally bought a new one this month. I wore it yesterday under another top I picked up – one I would never have purchased… because it’s pink… and not my usual “style” (ie, t-shirt). Well, the Husband commented on how nice I looked. Was I any thinner? I don’t think so, but I made an effort with my appearance.

Style your hair, wear clean clothes that fit properly, and smile (brushing your teeth helps too). Diet mentality had me believing I didn’t deserve to look my best because I was still fat and how on earth could I look good in that state anyway? Hmm. I think adding insult to injury just compounds the problem. Can you see where these warped thoughts can take us?

If a picture paints a thousand words, then what is our wardrobe saying about us?

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