The Gap Television Commercial - SwingAs I was digging in my closet this morning looking for something to wear, I noticed that I didn’t have any slacks that were clean. Of course I’ve only had 3 pairs of pants for about the last year. Those three pair are what I have labeled as my “fat pants.” They were my “line in the sand” when I went to go buy them. These three pants were the last in a series of expanding waistlines. “No more!” I screamed internally as tried them on, finally admitting that I did indeed require a larger size since the last time that I bought pants. I had to resign myself that the washing machine wasn’t shrinking my pants, my ass was just getting fatter.

My waist has been on a long slow climb since college. In fact, the first increase in my waistband happened in college, I moved up to a size 34 from a size 32. Since then, I’ve been going up and up, little by little, year after year. Each time I needed a larger size, I took another hit to my self esteem. Reading the label on a new pair of Dockers only validated my feeling of low self worth. As of January 1st of this year, I’m the heaviest I’ve ever been and I’ve grown to absolutely detest going shopping for clothes. Sure I would leave the mall with fancy new clothes, but each tag screamed that I was larger than last year and that’s all that I could hear.

For the last few years, my Mother has enjoyed taking me shopping for my birthday and not just to the mall mind you. One year she flew Holly and I to Chicago for sight seeing and shopping. That’s an INCREDIBLE gift and I knew she meant well and I DID appreciate what she was trying to do, but shopping has been the LAST thing that I’ve wanted to do in a long while. Shopping on my birthday just added insult to injury. As I’d try on sizes that I wore the year before, I would be reminded that I’m not only a year older, but fatter too! Trying to wear last year’s sizes was akin to making sausage, only I was the stuffing. So I’ve grown to hate shopping for anything clothes related except for shoes. At least my feet haven’t grown. Come to think of it, that might not be such a bad thing. 😛

Last year when I needed some new clothes for an upcoming event, I had high hopes of staying in the same size as the last time I went shopping, but it was the same old story – I needed a bigger size. As I tried on the size that I thought I still wore, I’d feel like I was a stuffed sausage, ready to burst of those pants at any moment. So I only bought three pair of pants and vowed that I would go no larger. Either that, or I would never go shopping again. 🙂 For the most part, I’ve stayed in that final size and not expanded beyond, however I haven’t tested my theory because I haven’t gone shopping either.

The downside to only having 3 pairs of pants is that you have to do a lot of wash. As I stood there this morning, looking at my closet full of everything that doesn’t fit anymore, I grabbed a pair of “last season’s” pants. “What the hell,” I thought, “you never know.” Yes I’ve been on the South Beach Diet for a couple of months now, but I haven’t had the courage to attempt to wear any of my older, skinnier clothes. If they fit, I would be ecstatic, but if they didn’t, my attitude would be in the dumper. I felt like I just couldn’t risk it. For some reason, I felt a wee bit more confident this morning and had an attitude that didn’t’ care one way or another if the pants fit or not. “I have to get dressed and I don’t want to dig anything out of the dirty clothes,” was all that I was thinking.

There was no dilly dallying. I threw on those pants like a stable boy caught with the master’s daughter and before I knew it, they were zipped up and buttoned. I stood there almost in shock as I realized that, of all things – they fit. They fit! Woo hoo! I bounced around the room like I was crazy for Coco Puffs. For once in a very long time, I went DOWN a size. I may have felt like Fonzie when I decided to try on my old pants, but clearly it was all a ruse. As I shook my fun cabin, it was clear that being able to fit into my old pants was a very big deal.

I may have a ways to go before I reach my goal weight, but this one small step certainly gave me a much needed boost to my self esteem. Seeing hard evidence that the diet is working bolsters my resole to keep eating healthy and not slip into the old routines of eating to make myself feel better. I’ve opened up a new vista in my wardrobe and I have to admit I like the view. 😀