|Today, I went on my first true shopping trip since embarking on my support group's moms' weight loss enterprise. I had planned to just make do with my clothes until I landed at my goal weight, but as my friend Mrs. MonkeyParade said, people were getting tired at looking at the top of my underwear, which is what shows around the waistline when the crotch of your britches is hanging down at your knees. TMI, maybe! Plus, my mom would say, "Are you bragging or complaining?" But truly, I was (and still am) having a closet crisis, so off I went.|
I had exactly one hour, and exactly one two-year old. While it wasn't exactly a fruitful expedition, I learned a number of things.
1. I think big, pun intended. I am incapable of looking at clothes and estimating whether or not they will fit me. I believe this applies both directions, size-wise. I just am not able to keep a realistic picture of my volume in my head. I took a ginormous pile into the dressing room and came out with 2 dresses that fit. For the most part, I'm no longer a "Women's" size. THAT felt good! And Mrs. MonkeyParade graciously shared the moment with me from the comfort of her own home when I called her from my cell phone in the dressing room. I'm apparently a size 16 -- which they evidently sell in the regular ladies section. I think that still qualifies as a "plus" size, though. I found the sizes absolutely baffling. Can anyone tell me how that works? What's the dif between a 16W and a 16? What is one less than a 1X? Most of my 2X shirts still work, so I won't need to purchase any of those yet.
2. I was terrified to leave the Women's section in pursuit of clothing that fit. The dress section was doable, because they are on the same side of the store as the Women's clothing, but I felt like everyone was staring at me. "What is she doing there? Doesn't the poor dear know that these are the REGULAR ladies' sizes?" Do you think they were really looking at me, or could they have been looking at the baby, or might I actually be paranoid?? Nonetheless, I'll have to get someone to go with me next time.
3. Clothes actually exist that make me look nice -- instead of just covering me up. Now that was a real mindblower for me. As a plus-size lady for much of the past 12 years, I have programmed myself to seek clothing that looks like it might have been produced by Omar The Tentmaker. You know the stuff. The clothing that HIDES you. Or even worse, I usually avoided buying clothing at all and instead bestowed my retail therapy energies on shoes. After all, I never had to wear plus size shoes or go to a special store exclusively for shoes in my size. My point is, I did a lot of compromising with tastes. I don't own a lot of clothes that I really like. Just clothes that fit -- at least from my perspective. Or clothes that hide my sins. So while I have a long way to go, more than 50 pounds by my reckoning, I can see that this clothes buying thing could be fun.
That reminds me to say that I adjusted my goal weight 10 lbs. south today to 145. My husband asked if that would be healthy. I thought that was amusing, since he used to complain that the weight I was at was very unhealthy. I'm not sure it is doable, but I did see a dietician a good 8 or so years ago and she did the bone measurement, etc., and declared that I should weigh 147. So I thought my 155 pound goal might be going too easy on myself. I suppose if I get there and it doesn't seem right, I can say uncle then. I realize that I shouldn't count my chickens before I hatch, but progress has been quite steady and I remain hopeful that this time will be the time that I permanently change my life and maintain a healthy weight.