I know I just blogged a couple of hours ago, but something just happened. Something that felt profound, that I wanted to share before the emotion fades.
I was going through my clothes... yeah, you've seen me do this before... because all of the 16's I've continued to wear even though they are baggy have gotten so ridiculously large on me that it is embarrassing. And besides, the weather has changed, and I needed to find some long jeans to wear. I have a pair of 14's I've been wearing on occasion, so I figured it was time to trade down to size 14 from my Rubbermaid tubs.
I have two tubs full of "too small" clothes. They're not OLD clothes I saved... because the last time I saw a size 14 was in 1991 before vanity sizing hit... they are *new* clothes I bought along my weight loss journey. I'd see a clearance or a good deal on eBay, and snag a few clothes in smaller sizes "for later." It made me feel secure, having two tubs of clothes to shrink into. So tonight I dug them out.
I started with the bigger sizes. The last time I tried on jeans from these tubs was in the spring, when I took everything that was too tight to wear and stuck them away. I don't generally wear jeans in summertime so I hadn't tried any of them on since. I started with some size 20's and 18's that, yes, were too tight in the spring because they are cut unusually small. Guess what? Way, WAY too big now. Into the Fat Clothes box they went. Next I put on the 16's, thinking some would fit okay. Nope, nada. Every Single Pair of 16's I tried on, one after the other, went right into the "too big" pile. I mean, they were even too big to throw into the wash on hot and shrink to fit me! I was honestly stunned. Some of these jeans are brand new, with tags still on them! I pulled out the last 16's, some classy ones I *love* the styling of, muttered, "these better fit," and then stared at myself with my pants hanging off me in the mirror. Unbelievable. It was like some kind of time warp. I KNOW I couldn't even get these past my hips last time I tried them on!
The Fat Clothes box got fuller. The tubs of smaller clothes got emptier. I had some very mixed feelings of disconnect:
I am not POSSIBLY that much smaller than I was a few months ago.
This cannot be happening.
How can those jeans be TOO BIG?
My legs look so fat, how on earth can they not fill out those little jeans?
And then, when I was out of 16's and took out the 14's, I held them up and thought, There Is NO WAY.
No way I will fit into these.
I looked at the little circle of denim that was the waist as I stepped into the legs and thought, I am insane for thinking I can get my body into these...
but they fit.
Every.Single.Pair of 14's I own fit me fine. Not tight, not "maybe in a few weeks." They FIT.
And one pair of 14's had to go in the Fat Clothes box. How crazy is that?
I had two pairs of 12's... the smallest jeans I own. Dare I try them on? So tiny looking to me. Maybe?
I decided to give it a shot.
They *do* fit! NOT enough to wear all day yet, but both pairs went up over the hips, buttoned, and zipped.
I will be wearing size 12 jeans in my 100-Pounds-Gone pictures. Just wow.
At the end of an hour, I had a heaping box of Too Bigs and one very empty Rubbermaid tub, as well as one tub with just a few items left in it. Underneath all the smaller clothes was a shirt. It was folded neatly at the very bottom of the tub. As soon as I saw it, I recognized it. It was my favorite shirt I used to love to wear when I weighed 278 pounds. I must have saved it at the bottom of the pile, to look at when I got nearer to my goal. I pulled it out. I gasped.
I knew it would be big. I knew how large I was. But I honestly have NO recollection of EVER holding up, folding, or hanging up a shirt that big in my closet. It is as wide as it is tall. Soft and grey, size 26/28, the fabric extends so wide that I was just stunned. I held it up, speechless.
Finally, tears in my eyes, I said out loud, "How could you not notice? How could you not notice?"
I think you know what I mean.
I laid the shirt on the floor, and beside it, I laid a size medium shirt that I have been wearing all summer.
I feel for the woman who used to fill that shirt to capacity. I cry for her because she didn't even notice what she had done to herself. She didn't know anything else was possible. She thought she was trapped in that life she had... in that body. She was so sad.
But I am so proud of her. I rejoice in her absolute determination and the guts it took to take those first steps to make a change. I love her for taking back her power and changing her life so dramatically. I embrace her for her courage in the dire circumstances she was in. I admire her for facing the daunting task of losing 100 pounds. It seemed impossible. But it wasn't. And because she had that tiny glimmer of hope and spark of determination, here I am. I am alive today because of her. Because of me. I saved myself.
The shirts are just symbols of how far I've come... of how different life would be for me now had I not taken those first steps and continued on for three years. I am very proud of what I've done, but I am also humbled that it could have easily turned out very differently. Very, very differently. That shirt is like a time capsule... a window into my past, but also a reminder of where I could return to if I ever start walking back that path. I will never forget. And I am so thankful for my newfound freedom.
Grins For Breakfast
50 minutes ago