Tuesday, June 20, 2006

The Torture Of Clothes Shopping

Today as I put on a pair of black capris pants and noticed I was floating in them, I thought about the onerous task awaiting me: shopping for new clothes. I love having new clothes, but I hate shopping for them- it's nothing short of torture. When I got down to a size 14 a few years ago I noticed how much easier it was to find cheap, decently-made, stylish clothing. At size 12 and 10 I even rejoiced at rarely having to try anything on- I could just grab something off the rack, pay and leave. And what a selection! I could really express my inner "wild child" in those days.

Today, at a size 24, shopping is even more torturous. I don't own a single item of clothing that expresses my persona because I can't find anything decent in my size that I like and/or can afford. My clothes are strictly utilitarian: they keep me legal and protect me from the elements. When I was near my goal weight and could wear the clothes I loved, I used to take walks just for the joy of being able to look the way I wanted to. I went to bookstores, cafes, outdoor fairs, etc. because I felt so good about my weight loss and my ability to dress in a way that reflected who I was.

As a large woman in ugly clothes, I don't like to go out much, and I often find myself walking with my eyes cast away from people, as if I were trying to hide. As I lose this weight, I look forward to presenting myself once again in the way I want to be seen, and feeling happy about the way I feel and look. It's not about being pretty; it's just about the freedom to express myself through my personal style. A freedom I don't feel these days.




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