I just want to talk for a minute about women's bodies and shopping. Now, I have what I have always considered a normal body. I am not overweight, nor am I too skinny. I have some cellulose (perfectly normal) in my thighs, my calves are thick from sports, and I still have a waist (at my age and after having a kid). And I love my body--it grew and birthed a child, it has ran marathons and hiked up mountains, it has danced and laughed and repaired itself from illnesses and injuries--but I hate clothes shopping. The thing is, while trying on clothes and seeing how nothing fits even though I pick my size off the shelf, I start to loathe my body. Love body while not clothes shopping; hate body while clothes shopping. Tough equation.
In the dressing room while stuffing my all-of-a-sudden sausage legs into a size 10 pair of pants--damn "skinny" pants!--I start to feel fat. In a size 10. Scary double digits. I wonder, if sizes came in letters, A,B,C,D and so on, would I feel the same about my body? Or would I equate the letters with school grades and think I have failed if I wear a size F? Yet the numbers serve to tell me that the higher I go, the bigger I am. When in fact I am not big. I am just me. My body is perfectly sized exactly right just for me. So how is it nothing ever fits? Why aren't the clothing companies making clothes that actually fit my body? If one pair of pants is too small in the legs, they're too big in the waist. If another fits in the waist, they are two feet too long in the legs. Trying on endless pairs of pants, I find myself longing for the days where people made their own clothes, or had their own tailor.
And don't even get me started on those mirrors and those lights! While the clothing may make me feel fat, the lights and mirrors make me feel ugly! Blotchy, pale, discolored, wide, out of proportion--it's like a fun house mirror. If the companies do that on purpose to try and disorient us into making bad purchases, oh wait, it's working. I bought a royal blue blazer at the store where it looked awesome on me in their mirror, but when I got it home it looked like a Wal-Mart cashier blazer! Sigh. Why do I even go shopping? Oh yeah, I usually don't shop at big box stores. Tonight was an exception. I think I'll stick to my local downtown stores who have signs on their regularly lighted mirrors that say "I am beautiful! I love my body." No more exceptions. No more cheap short-cuts to big box stores. Back to thrift stores and saving up for weeks to buy one item at a clothing boutique! You can't really win with clothes shopping, can you?