Saturday, August 30, 2014

Grieving the After

This summer I did something that was incredibly difficult and scary.  I gave away an entire wardrobe's worth of clothing in my "goal size".  These clothes were things I wore at about age 17-21.  I'm 34 now, and about 3 or 4 sizes above that collection of clothing.  I dutifully held on to these items because they were my favorite clothes- there was some really cute stuff in there!  And OF COURSE, I would get to that size again...some day.  I wouldn't want to have to go out and spend hundreds of dollars replacing all those clothes WHEN I got back to that size!

I've taken many "before" pictures in my life, sat down and planned out my "miraculous transformation to come", wrote down every workout, every calorie limit and possible "cheat" day to stick with the healthy goal of losing 2 pounds per week.  In fact, the box this clothing was stored in was labeled, "Julie's clothes Summer 2008".  That was the time period I had estimated I'd be able to fit in them again, after my careful planning out of the exact path to take to this glorious "after".

So when it was time to clean out and get rid of my storage unit this summer, I took a long hard look at this wardrobe I had been saving.  I took them out and looked longingly at my jeans and black pants that I fondly remember feeling so great wearing - I even got asked out on a date (something that almost never happened to me) by a complete stranger while wearing those clothes!  That means, this guy who knew NOTHING about me, asked me out based solely on looks...ME!  What a thrilling day that was. How nice it would be to have that experience again.  But for that to happen, I have to fit in those clothes again.

So then why did I give the clothes away?  Why would I waste money and give up my inspiration to be healthy?  I remember once even hanging those jeans up on my wall in an attempt to inspire myself daily to exercise and avoid eating the sweets I loved, so that I could once again be sexy, confident, and acceptable to males.

Why did I get rid of them?  I'll tell you why.  Because I decided to be kind to myself.  I decided I love myself.  I decided that I am awesome the way I am - NOT ONE POUND LIGHTER.  I will no longer subject myself to the self-inflicted abuse of putting life off until I get to my "after".  My life is here and now.  I got rid of those clothes because I gave myself permission to go ahead and live.

Believe me, letting it go was a hard thing to do.  I hesitated.  I regretted.  I bargained.  I cried.  And after they were gone, I breathed.  Then I smiled.  And then I went on with my awesome life.

(Thanks again to Militant Baker for doing this Smash the Scale thing at the beginning of this year.  I took another big step by grieving the "after".)

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