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When I was in college, I thought I needed to lose weight. I wore bikinis, short cutoff denim shorts and belly-baring tops but decided I was fat because I couldn’t fit into my petite roommate’s size 4 dresses from Contempo Casuals. I remember going to a vintage store, seeing the most gorgeous long beaded caftan and deciding not to purchase it because I wasn’t my “goal weight.”
Before I got pregnant, I wavered between a size 10 and size 12. I never purchased any clothing that cost a price I found expensive (my cutoff was $100) because I was overweight, and decided I shouldn’t spend that sort of money until I was thinner. I felt that spending such money was a waste.
I then got pregnant, gained over 50 pounds, and needed two and a half years to get all of that weight back off.
Why am I telling you this? Because I believe many of you women are just like me. You feel you don’t deserve nice clothes because you aren’t a certain size you have deemed to be perfect. Maybe you’re currently dieting, have a new exercise regimen; maybe like me you’re working off baby weight or possibly have been struggling with your size for quite a while. It seems silly to invest in fashion that won’t fit in a couple of months.
The thing is, you don’t know what the future holds, and in the mean time you are punishing yourself.
After having Emerson, I decided to be nice to myself. I just went through a pretty crazy experience with this body and it survived. Yes, I now have hips and a mama pooch and several miles of stretch marks. The weight didn’t come off quickly – I may have lost almost 20 pounds in one week from loss of water and a 7 pound, 9 ounce baby from my womb but the rest took it’s sweet time. I knew I would eventually lose the baby weight, but I didn’t know when. Instead of dressing myself in ill-fitting pieces and cheap standbys as I waited for myself to whittle down, I dressed the current me. I sought out companies and styles of clothes that would flatter and work with my current shape. I didn’t hesitate when I found a piece at full price if it was really fantastic. I had a great body, a hard working body, a strong body and it DESERVED to be dressed well.
Lately, I have found myself bypassing my cutoff price a few times. I am mid-weightloss but it’s not stopping me from dressing the body I currently have. Who knows what the future may hold – I may lose 50 pounds, I may stay at this size, I may gain. I want to live in the moment, enjoy the moment, live this life that I have right now with gusto and with joy. For me, that means I do it wearing sassy shoes and fabulous frocks. I am an amazing person, no matter my size and I am going to dress this current me in the way in which it deserves.
The funny thing is, the better I dress, the happier I feel. The happier I feel, the more I love my reflection. The more I love my reflection, the easier I find it to lose weight, come to terms with my new curves, and also find clothes that flatter. It’s hard as heck to find clothes that look good when you have slumped shoulders and a snarl. When you accept and love yourself you stand straighter, you walk with more grace, you smile more, and clothing is far more kind.
Stop punishing yourself, you are a fabulous woman who deserves to feel good. That may be some new paint brushes, a pedicure, or pair of peeptoe heels. Maybe it's just allowing color into your life, or buying a new pair of jeans. Whatever works with your budget, your lifestyle, and your soul.