Growing up shopping for clothes was always a challenge. My curves came in early and I was chunky. Clothes just didn’t fit me well. I never got to buy clothes from the Limited Too or any other cutesy teen stores. Places like Forever 21, Charlotte Russe and Wet Seal never had clothes to fit me. By the time I grew into my curves I had grown out of the size range they carried. It made shopping with friends awkward since I could only shop in certain stores so I became a independent shopper. I prefer shopping alone anyway, but in the beginning it was more about self preservation. I did not want to be emotional in front of other people while I shopped. Always having the knowledge that I could not walk into a “normal” store and by off the rack made me dread shopping with other people.
These stores became out of sight and out of mind for me. If I did find myself in the predicament of shopping with friends, I would stick to looking at the shoes or jewelry. I truly never thought it affected my emotions. Typically I would detach myself from my feelings or disappointment in myself and just not allow myself to be put in those situations where I had to face the fact I was too overweight to shop at such store.
Last weekend I found myself in that predicament. I went shopping with my sisters. We ended up in Charlotte Russe. I had been told that Charlotte Russe had a plus size line, but as the case with most “plus size sections” at trendy stores, I assumed that what they would consider a 3x would in fact fit a size 14. I find most stores who add a plus size line to their collection are so far from true to size. While my sisters were shopping I ventured over to the plus size area to take a look. I picked up a few pieces in the largest size on a whim. Assuming there was no way they would fit. But since I have started my weight loss journey and I have lost to date a total of 40 pounds I was weirdly optimistic.
To my surprise not only did the clothing fit, but it was actually too big! I do not think I have ever felt so happy coming out of a dressing room empty handed! Although I didn’t find anything there was a feeling of triumph in that moment. Feeling so much joy and pride in my hard work I continued to walk around the store waiting on my sister to finish up. One of my sisters called my attention to a super cute denim jacket. I have been saying for months I needed a new one. I remember telling her it was perfect, but being that it was denim there was no way it would work. There was no stretch and jackets can be a little precarious for me anyways. I do not like to constricted. Being the pushy woman that my sister is she made me put it on right in the middle of the store. Once again, to my surprise, it was a little too big. Not in the way it wouldn’t work for me. I would have definitely been able to make it work, but if I continue to lose weight (like I plan to) it would be too big really soon. My sisters suggested I try on the smaller size. I begrudgingly did it. Up to this moment I had a really good boost in my confidence. I was afraid that all that pride in myself was going to be thwarted but my over zealousness to try on smaller clothing. The jacket was perfect. The smaller size fit beautifully. It was not too snug. I had plenty of room to move! The tears started falling. I couldn’t stop them from coming. My sisters enveloped me in a huge group hug and cried with me. They know the struggles I have been through and the hits my self confidence and self esteem have endured over the years.
My weight loss journey is still a long road ahead. I still have a lot of weight I want to lose. It will not be an overnight process. It will take work and focus. Some days I am going to cry because I want to give up. But then other days I will cry because I will be celebrating a new accomplishment. I am thankful I have such a great group of people around me cheering me on and forcing me to try on clothes I am convinced won’t fit.