A little over 3 years ago, I embarked on a fairly radical trip. I left a company I’d been with for nearly a decade, jumped to a drastically different industry, and into a new role. I used that break with my own history to jump start my HealthyMe journey. Within a year, I had lost more weight than I ever imagined I would, and was stronger than I had ever been, even as a teenage athlete. I’d even started running, which I claimed to hate. Professionally, I was making waves - the best kind - that moved an organization forward and in directions it not only needed to go, but, like me, had never thought it would.
During those 3 years, I shed quite a bit. I casted off pounds and I released images and perceptions I’d had of myself in my career and personally. I opened up doors I never wanted to open, and found that, while there was meaty, juicy stuff inside, to get to access it, I’d have to grow.
Growing is painful, people. So is change, and so is loss.
There were more tears than in most other phases of my life (well, maybe not more than when I was a sleep-deprived mother to a newborn, but you get the picture), and there was an immense amount of joy. Sometimes, the joyful tears mixed with those from mourning.
While many of those tears were deep, emotional ones, some of them were for what seem like trivial things. There was the time I bawled in the J. Crew dressing room because I tried on a button down shirt - and it fit. One day, I lost it because I was playing around with the Beans, made muscles, looked in the mirror, and I was RIPPED.
I also let ‘er rip when I gave away some clothes that had been in my closet for years. Some I didn’t wear any longer, but I held onto them as remnants of a different life, and couldn’t let them go. Then, one day, my friend Rosana came over, worked her insane stylist magic, and with a single look, helped me release a pile of those clothes with tears of laughter vice sadness.
I was going to consign a bunch of those pieces. I’d never done it before, but they were in too good shape to let them go. So I put them in my car, intending to call the consignment store and schedule an appointment. That was a year and a half ago.
Since then, they’ve moved from car to car, in and out of garbage bags, and even back into our home again. Finally, I decided I’d do good with them, and instead of unmet promises to consign them, I’d take them to Goodwill, where they’d serve both with the money they’d bring for their sale with the service they’d give their next owner.
They’re still in the back of my car.
The other day, I made a rash and admittedly painful decision on those clothes. I’m going to take them out of my car and try them on again. They might fit.
After training for my first half marathon, I went through some stressful times. I turned back to my coping mechanism (one of them), and let major sugar back in my life. I let my psyche try to hide from itself behind a second helping here, and another one there. I gained back nearly a quarter of what I’d lost. Some of my new wardrobe was starting to get tight, so I kicked it back into gear. I kept running, and I went to yoga. I ate clean (or cleaner), and I used a gala as a goal to get back to where I wanted to be. I made it.
Our prom picture...remember the marigold dress?
And then I let it creep back up. Again.
I’m still strong. I still know what food fuels me. I know better than I did 3 years ago what cuts and styles I can rock. And I’m incredibly glad right now, when, up nearly half of what I’d lost, I never did follow Stacy & Clinton’s advice and get rid of things that didn’t fit. I’m not feeling great about myself right now physically, frustrated by the lack of time I have to focus on my health - but all for good changes (another step farther in my career, a new home, and changes for our whole family). Having a cushion of things that might let me follow Stacy’s recommendation to me personally (remember this?) and having a few things that fit me well where I am now? That opportunity, born out of procrastination, feels downright like a rescue at the moment.
I don’t know whether any of the pieces in my car will fit me. And I certainly don’t advocate hanging onto clothing “just in case.” But I can tell you that, right now, for me, I’m grateful for the possibility that some of my “in between” clothing might be that for me again - a stepping stone and a tool in my getting back on the path to where I feel best about myself.