Size "Healthy"

I’ve crossed a lot of to-do’s off my list this week, but I was left with shopping for a suit for an upcoming interview. (Yes, I have a new job, but I may want another!). On my last interview, my suit was tight and uncomfortable. I did not feel my best. My “PCOS weight” as I refer to it, was not comfortable or flattering stuffed into my now too-small suit. Ugh.

Yesterday while shopping, a very kind woman was helping me piece together a suit. When she asked what size, I told her my best guess for formal attire. I got into the dressing room and the clothes were nearly falling off of me. Hm. Was I playing a mental game with myself without knowing it? Maybe it was the subconscious fear I had of grabbing my usual size and feeling completely down on myself if it didn’t fit well.

The woman helped me get the correct size and everything fit beautifully. I left feeling really good, knowing that I’ll look good for my interview next week.

I am not one to dwell on sizes, promise. If you don’t believe me, check out my guest post on Bikini Birthday about body image. I am shaped like a line-backer, and petite is about the last word most people would use to describe me. Unless, of course, they were referring to my height. In which case, they would be correct.

I still don’t know what transpired yesterday in that little noggin’ of mine. I don’t know whether I should be ashamed for misjudging my size so badly, or happy that I felt great after trying on clothes at my not-so-ideal weight. But what I do know is that I’ve come a long way when it comes to sizes.

In the past when I’ve bounded up a few pounds, I’ve continued to grab the size I used to be. Slinking to the changing room knowing that my love handles would be lurching from the waist band and the rear could fatefully rip if I dared to sit down. Duh. And yet, I refused to buy a bigger size. Pride. I would go home, commit to losing 10 pounds, and not one month later, the same changing room ordeal would transpire.

Angela had a great “movement” among her readers to encourage “size healthy”. I LOVE THIS. Size healthy is not a number…it’s a feeling, a knowing, an acceptance of YOU!

I left with my suit yesterday. In a size “healthy”. 😀

Question: Have you ever played the numbers game with clothing sizes? Have you ever disliked shopping because you felt like nothing would look good?

Be good to you,

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40 Comments

  1. July 23, 2010 / 5:14 am

    Great post! It goes along very well with one I wrote yesterday about wearing clothes that fit and flatter our bodies right now, regardless of size or weight or whatever. We all deserve to wear clothing that makes us feel comfortable and confident!

  2. July 23, 2010 / 5:15 am

    I learned long ago to not care about sizes. It has always varied from store or brand. But I do have those days when I go shopping and NOTHING looks right, etc. I hate those days – they are usually when I need something most!

  3. July 23, 2010 / 5:43 am

    Good for you Nicole.
    I have always been in the opposite category, but as many people say “Gina, how can you complain?!” I say it’s actually quite embarrassing to be spotted shopping in the children’s section. Sometimes I just can’t find pants that fit because my legs are NOT womanly at all. Then when it comes to shirts, same thing, because my top half isn’t very womanly either! SO while I’m quite skinny, it’s not all fun, but am I happy where I am? Sure! It’s ME! I can’t change that.

    Great post. What’s the job, by the way??

  4. July 23, 2010 / 6:18 am

    That is so great! I know buying clothes that fit my body well when I had to put on weight to conceive was the best thing I did to help my confidence. We can always still strive to be healthy and work hard to care for ourselves without forcing our bodies to a place and size they aren’t going to go.

  5. July 23, 2010 / 6:58 am

    I’m glad you found something you will feel pretty and confident in. Sizes are so random….they change from one store to the next! But its easy to get caught up in feeling good or bad because of the number on the tag. I’m glad so many of us are beating that mentality 🙂

  6. July 23, 2010 / 6:59 am

    I feel like clothing sizes vary so much from store to store that there’s no reason worrying about them. At H&M, for instance, I take a much larger size than most other stores. Others cut their clothes really large. It makes me wish women could choose all pants like men: with a waist and inseam number.

  7. July 23, 2010 / 7:12 am

    I can totally relate. Gaining weight and struggling with it b/c of something we can’t (easily) control like PCOS is bad enough and then having to find new clothes that fit is just no fun. But I’ve become ok with my new body and I feel I deserve to look good and feel comfortable so I just buy what fits my “size healthy” body! 🙂 Great post, Nicole!!

  8. July 23, 2010 / 7:20 am

    I am SO bad about this…not as bad any more, but still– I have a certain size in my head that I don’t want to go above, and even if that size is SKIN tight on me, I will refuse to try on the larger size! I feel like I’m pretty confident with myself other than this, so I wish I could let go of my size fears!

  9. July 23, 2010 / 7:21 am

    I LOVE this, Nicole. I admire your confidence in yourself. One too many times I’ve dreaded the change room and, like you, refused to choose a larger more flattering size.

    I don’t want to be bound by (or even validated by) my size. It’s a number that seems to have far too much bearing on how we see ourselves – a quantitative measure of our self worth.

    I want to be a size healthy too. I’ve been meaning to take part in that movement. I will.

  10. July 23, 2010 / 7:39 am

    Sometimes its so hard to accept the size that you are. It took me a while to learn that even if something isn’t the “size” I want it to be, I will look worse in clothes that I buy based on the number rather than on the fit. I can never buy clothes from Abercrombie, for example, because their sizes are rediculous! Never mind the fact that, as the size of their super short skirts go up, the length doesn’t change. Because I’m so tall, a skirt from there that would fit me should probably be worn as a headband!

  11. July 23, 2010 / 8:00 am

    I think the stores/brands play around with sizes. I can wear an 8 in some things but need a 12 for others….makes no sense. Of course you love the clothes that are an 8 though :). When I was last home, I tried on pants – same fit, color, etc. but one was regular and one was petite. I had to get a smaller size for the petite pants in order for them to actually fit the same (minus length). So weird. But it’s always a wonderful feeling to try on something that’s too big! Sounds like a wonderful day of shopping :).

  12. July 23, 2010 / 9:06 am

    beautiful post, my love!! its such a great feeling when u can leave the dressing room feeling confident, and happy with yourself. SIZE healthy.. amen!

  13. July 23, 2010 / 9:36 am

    It was hard to accept when I gained some weight that I was not a size 0 anymore. I am very short, so a 0 was not unreasonable, but I know I am still healthy at my current weight and current size. I was just not used to shopping for things that fit versus things that may have been bug or loose because they do not come any smaller. I have always been small, but when I met my husband was post op lap choley and so fat was not my friend. I had lost a lot more weight. But you know what they say about love…it certainly cured everything.

    I like size healthy. I always remind people the outside appearance has not thing to do with the inside appearance, both as a person and as in health terms. Some who looks skinny on the outside can still have diabetes or heart disease, and someone a little overweight can have no medical conditions at all. It should not be about looks, it should be about health. Who cares if you look good but die early because you were unhealthy!

  14. July 23, 2010 / 10:17 am

    Haven’t we ALL played the size game? I’m come to realize size is only a number because every designer and store sizes their clothes differently. I own clothes of 5 different sizes in my closet and all of them fit. I can be a 0 from one store and an 8 from another. I don’t care what the label says, as long as it fits and I am comfortable.

    Of course…there are some blue jeans, in particular, in my closet that I USED to fit in. I will not throw them away, and periodically I try them on just to see how tight they are, and to remind myself that I ONCE fit in those jeans comfortably. That tends to get me motivated. 🙂

    I’m excited that you bought a new suit – I can imagine it looks fabulous on you! Good luck with another interview!! In this economy, even landing interviews is a blessing 🙂

  15. July 23, 2010 / 10:49 am

    Sizes seem to be a head game to begin as I’ve found sizes differ between brands and even sometimes within brands. Not too long ago I ordered two different style shirts from Old Navy, both medium, one ended up looking like a tent on me and the other fit very snug.

  16. July 23, 2010 / 10:51 am

    All that matters is that you feel good. It’s not the numbers, it’s how you feel. It’s wonderful that you left the store feeling happy and healthy. It’s numbers that are deceiving and cynical, considering they vary so much from store to store. One store I can be two sizes larger, so I know that I can’t let the numbers judge me.

  17. July 23, 2010 / 11:01 am

    This post is really inspiring and touches me. Two years ago when I was about 4 months pregnant, I went to buy a dress for a party. I selected the dress that was my size and the woman shoke her head and rolled her eyes and I felt so bad about it. From there… I was uncomfortable in selecting the right size of colthes even after I’ve lost a lot of weight. Now I will always remember that I am a size ” healthy”!
    Thanks, Nicole!

  18. July 23, 2010 / 11:24 am

    Haven’t played the numbers game but I definitely spend time wishing that I didn’t have a linebacker body but knowing, all the same, that no matter what I do, I will never have a petite frame because that’s not how I’m built…

  19. July 23, 2010 / 11:37 am

    Great, great post! I’ve done the same thing before only to realize that my feelings are not a size.

  20. July 23, 2010 / 12:32 pm

    I learned a long time ago that letting a ‘size’ guide how you feel about yourself is silly and won’t get you anywhere. Luckily, I’ve also learned to be able to be comfortable and confident not worried about the size of what I am trying on but instead, making sure that I feel GOOD in what I mean wearing. I hear you though, some days the dressing room just isn’t our friend.

  21. July 23, 2010 / 3:17 pm

    i always say its great to turn a negative into a positive so I think its great that you felt good about yourself even if you are uncomfortable at your weight!! yay 🙂 Sizes are so distorted today anyways.

  22. July 23, 2010 / 4:25 pm

    i am doing that right now because i have put on a few pounds and my current jeans are so tight but i keep stuffing myself into them. ugh what a mess. you are right…….get a size healthy 🙂 thanks nicole!

  23. July 23, 2010 / 4:38 pm

    I can totally relate! I’ve gone back and forth in sizes quite a few times so I’ve been on both sides of the coin. When I gain a bit of weight I won’t let myself buy anything until I lose the weight. But I love your philosophy and it’s definitely something I want to keep in mind! By the way, check out my new blog, Running With Mascara!

  24. July 23, 2010 / 5:09 pm

    I HATE shopping for clothes! Ive given up caring about sizes though. For one, they change depending on the store, so it really doesnt mean a thing. I’ve definitely had my moments where I refused to buy something just because it was bigger than I wanted to be though.

  25. July 23, 2010 / 8:49 pm

    This is a GREAT way of looking at it!! I’ve been going through this lately. Having gained tons of weight from my thyroid and trying to loose it, I’ve not been wanting to admit my size. It’s just too depressing. But then I have days like today where my pants don’t fit and I’m too self conscious about it.

  26. July 23, 2010 / 9:13 pm

    I still struggle with feeling I should be a certain size, but have made some progress. I am happy you have too!

  27. July 23, 2010 / 9:24 pm

    I think everyone can relate to this!! I do this all the time, I’ll grab a bigger size and sometime i just know they’ll be too big but I still just have to try them on. I think it’s fear that your “normal” size will be too small. It’s hard to get over and yes I can not stand trying clothes on for that reason. Oh and the lights! I just don’t look in the mirror, I’m better off lol I love the idea of a healthy size but It’s still a hard thing to remember when you’re having a hard time squeezing into a pair of pants that *should* fit. It’s a battle but self acceptance is a good start!

  28. July 23, 2010 / 10:13 pm

    Right now I have pants, that all fit, that range in size from 8 to 14. I am short too, so 10 pounds = a new pant size.

    Glad you found something that you love!

  29. July 23, 2010 / 10:23 pm

    Great post. 🙂 Loved it!

  30. July 24, 2010 / 8:06 am

    The number/size game is the WORST. It’s such a mind f***. I try my best not to let the numbers get to me…but I have to concede I’m pretty bad at it. Go you taking it on, headfirst!

  31. July 24, 2010 / 8:27 am

    Love the size concept of “healthy”. You’re truly inspiring!

  32. July 24, 2010 / 12:54 pm

    I am so guilty of not buying something I like because it didn’t fit in the size I think I am. Or rather, the size I was 5 years ago. I recently started trying on the bigger size and going with it. I mean, clothes look better when they fit, not when you have to squeeze into them.

  33. July 24, 2010 / 3:22 pm

    I have definitely gotten hung up on sizes before. I would try to buy smaller sizes hoping I would eventually get into them. I decided that it is not worth it in the end.

  34. July 24, 2010 / 5:05 pm

    I go through phases where I hate shopping for clothes and times when I love it. It’s really strange. I definitely know how it feels to be completely uncomfortable with yourself because of a number and that’s absolutely terrible. I struggle with it all the time but I have to remember I’m build differently than a lot of girls. Skinny jeans will never look good on my thick legs. Oh well. I’m starting to like my thick legs though 🙂

  35. July 24, 2010 / 7:42 pm

    I got hit with a horrible episode of the numbers game when I went shopping for a bridesmaid dress for my best friend’s wedding a few months ago. I asked for my usual size as well as the next one up because I heard they ran small. It turned out that neither size fit me, and I had to go up yet another number. Part of me tried to rationalize knowing it was still a small number, but it still hurt deeply.

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