I did what?
Tuesday, July 27, 2010
I think I mentioned in some previous blog that I'm not best friends with clothes shopping.
I tend to avoid it as much as I can. Until recently, I'd splash out every 5 years or longer on classic good quality things that I'd then wear out until they're dead, before doing it again. No shopping in between, none at all.
Before I lost weight I used to go to a plus size store. I liked their clothes and I knew that their sizes would fit me without even trying things on. Now of course I can't go there any more so I'm stuck. Back in March I bought a few pairs of trousers in size 14, thinking that the additional weight loss wouldn't make much difference now as it was only about 10 kg left. What I hadn't counted on was losing inches and not weight. In the past few weeks inches seem to have disappeared into thin air. My weight has only slightly changed, but the trousers I bought in March are now falling off my hips.
Today I decided I'd look for new trousers. Partly it was 'cos this morning I'd had an argument with my sister who's being much less than supportive - her comments when she saw me after a few months were along the lines of: "you look older", "I'd stop now", your bones are sticking out" and the likes. Hey, I'm not saying she should tell me how wonderful I look, but a "wow, well done, are you feeling good about it" would have been nice. For the record, the bones that are "sticking out" are the cheek bones and the collar bone, and they're not sticking out: they're visible, which they should have been before if they hadn't been covered in fat. She also told me that I looked ok when she saw me last year, after I'd already lost some weight but not as much as now, completely ignoring the fact that when she last saw me I was still officially obese. She then added that it wasn't about looks, and that if I felt good I shouldn't be upset at her opinion. So I replied that it wasn't her opinion I was upset at, but the fact that of all the comments she'd made not *one* was positive, supportive or encouraging and that *she* was making it all about looks (older, bones sticking out, looked ok last year etc...). I also reminded her of the saying "if you can't say something nice, keep your mouth shut", especially since her opinion hadn't actually been asked.
But I digress. Today I was upset at the argument, and I was also thinking that I'll need more trousers soon as the ones I bought in March were mostly summery, and on top of that they're now falling off my hips, so I had a look around when I went out.
The first shop I stopped at was ok-ish. I tried 3 or 4 pairs (sizes ranging from 12 to 16), and guess what, none of them fit me properly. The best option was a pair of jeans in size 14 for £35. They looked ok but didn't feel quite right. I thought to myself that £35 was a lot of money to spend on a pair of jeans that didn't feel quite right, so I went to have a look in the second shop. There I tried another 4 pairs (ranging in size from 12 to 16 to XL). The size 16 wouldn't even fit through one leg. The XL fit, the 12 was very tight. In the end, the choice was down to two pairs of trousers (one for £35 and one for £50). Again, they looked ok but didn't feel quite right, and £50 was way too expensive for something that didn't feel quite right. By now I was feeling quite annoyed and ready to go home. The second shop was made for women who want to feel and look like pre-pubescent girls, and the shop assistant had been looking at me all through my visit with an expression in her face like: "you'll never find anything *your* enormous size here" ("enormous" meaning anything above a size 10 which in any other shop would probably be an 8 or 6).
As I was walking home I went past a third shop, and forced myself to go in, even though I didn't believe it would be any better. How wrong could I be? I looked through the rails and grabbed an armful of trousers and jeans, helped by the incredibly sweet shop assistants. When they had asked me what size I was I had told them I'd no idea so I was just trying different ones, as I was currently wearing a 14 that was falling off my hips at every step, but I had just tried some 14s and 16s I couldn't even get into, and some 12s that had fit me. The guy had looked me up and down and told me that he thought I was a 12, but that there was this type of jeans just arrived, called "Tummy Tuck", where you should go for one size lower, so he pushed a 10 in my arms before I went to the fitting room (trying not to laugh at him - me, in a size 10? Purrlease). Anyway, I picked all the trousers from the mess on the hooks one by one and tried them on. I was aiming for black and started from those. There were a pair of leggins, a pair of trousers and one of jeans that fit me (all in size 12), but again I wasn't entirely convinced (the one I liked the most was £80, but no way I'd spend that much on a single item of clothing!). I then had a go at the others, blue, pairs. All except one fit me, with the same problem - doesn't feel quite right). I put the Tummy Tuck on last, without much conviction: first, they were blue, secondly, they were a 10, and thirdly, they looked like a completely ordinary pair of jeans. In other words, "they won't fit me and even if they do they don't really look that hot".
Boy, how deceiving looks can be! They went on like a pair of old slippers, I zipped them up before I remembered to hold my breath in as no way I'd make it with a size 10, and up the zip went, nevertheless. They felt like I should have been born in them. They moulded to my legs, hips and bum like a second skin, soft and smooth as silk. And as for the "tummy tuck", I looked at my profile in the mirror and... it just wasn't there. No tummy! Flat as a pancake! But the best thing was that I didn't feel constricted. I have a thing about tight clothes that make me freak out, I need large, airy things. Not today - they were tight but a right kind of tight, not a freaky kind of tight. I felt as if my body was being supported without anything actually making me feel like I couldn't breathe. I popped my head out of the fitting room and said "I'll have these". I had to force myself to take them off so they could be scanned at the till... and that's when I saw it. The price tag. I looked at the woman and said: "Bloody 'ell, one-hundred-and-thirty quid for a pair of jeans? Are they made of gold thread???"
She just winked and smiled at me saying, "Look at it as an investment, you'll have them for years and you said yourself how they felt like a second skin".
I handed my credit card over and even left my number for them to call me *if* they get them in black! Apparently I wasn't the only one either: the lady told me how every one who'd tried those jeans on had ended up buying them, and then coming back for a second pair as basically they wear them all the time and need a spare for when they're in the wash!
Vanity sizing at its best - give a woman a pair of jeans with a label claiming they're 2 sizes below what she is, add some trick that makes them feel like she's just had cosmetic surgery without actually seeing a knife, and fleece her of roughly half what she'd normally pay for clothes in 5 years!