Wednesday, July 10, 2013

Never Tackled to See Size


     I enjoy clothes and fashion, though for many years I have not enjoyed trying on clothes.  As a kid I drove my grandmother insane in my refusal to get in the dressing room.  She would have to yell at me in middle of Penney's to get me to do it. It took a long time to let go of my distain for that small square box of doom.

     A dressing room is a box that could make or break my day. As a kid I was not excited to try on the kitty cat sweater. I did not want to look at myself in bad lighting at the end of the day, my hair matted to my head from playground sweat.  As I got older, and bigger, I did not want to look at my body or the size tag. In high school I would occasionally attempt to try on something in the stores my friends shopped (Forever 21 did not cater to a full figure when I was younger.) In these junior size stores I could not pull clothes all the way up or stretch it all the way over.  I left a massacre in dressing rooms of over stretched fabrics, busted seems, and popped off buttons.  These moments only fueled the fire of dressing room hate.

I wanted my confidence back! 
 Clothing stores that catered to my size where physically easier to shop in - I maintained blood circulation throughout the process. Mentally I would take a beating. My heart always dropped when I would have to reach for the eighteens, twenty two's, and at one point in my life the twenty eights.  At this size I did not feel sexy. Everyone has a different size that makes them comfortable and confident, mine was not at size twenty eight. I could have been a quick change artist; I wanted to get in and out without having to look  at the sad girl in the mirror.  The dressing room mirror seemed to zoom in on fat rolls, stretch marks, and a bad hair day.  If I looked as bad as I felt I'm sure rocks would have been thrown at the troll set loose in the mall.

     Weight loss is, in theory, supposed to fix the distain for trying on clothes. It helped. The freedom to walk into any store was liberating, though it did bring on new anxieties.  I had not been able to let go of the dread of something not fitting. I did not believe the size tag. There is no way  I was going to fit into a medium! I had my pile of clothes I was ready to conquer in the dressing room and a hint of panic starts to build.  I knew I was holding my current size but, just like in high school, I had that fear of another fabric massacre.  

      Over the past couple years the panic has subsided but it still rears it's ugly head every now and then. The perfect dress, the dress that I could not wear before, causes me to hold my breath every time I reach for the zipper.  My mind's eye and my reflection in the mirror did not always match. It felt like I was waiting for the ball to drop, I was going to wake up from the dream and be back to holding the XXL. I was not prepared to have continued fear in the dressing room. The change in size did not remove the fear of humiliation. When I put the clothes on and don't resemble the hulk after I put them on, can I finally exhale. 

     I've often felt that when the weight came off and I reached my goal size that everything would fall into place. I would slow motion run through the mall, arms over flowing with bags, with my hair and make-up flawless. Nope, regardless of size I still saw a  "big" girl because that's all I'd ever known. It took years after losing my weight to believe what I see in the mirror. I have learned that it is not the size on the tag that dictates how I feel about my body, it is how the clothes look on me and how I feel in them. Once I let go of the size I set my confidence free. It was never my body that was wrong, it was the clothes I was trying to stuff it in. I let a tag tell me whether I was worthy or not. Denying my size only contributed in my self hate. NEVER AGAIN!! If something does not fit or look right it is the clothes NOT me and I will go and get the size that fits better. When it fits and flatters my body I feel beautiful. What I want people to see is a woman who treats her body with class and respect. My clothes fit and flatter my figure, even if that means it is a large. 

No one has ever run out of the bushes and tackled me to see the size tag on my shirt.  So who cares what size I am wearing if I look amazing in my outfit?! 

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