A confession: I haven't been as hard-core with the No Buy as I maybe should have been. There has been the occasional tidbit making its way into the closet. These, for example, a little while ago:
Hot pink corduroy pants!! HAH!! J. Crew calls this color "bright fuchsia," but don't kid yourself -- they are Hot! Pink! When I stumbled across them, there was a sign in the sale section which said the sale goods were an additional 30% off, and so the $29.99 price tag on these cords -- already a bargain -- looked even better. But when I got to the check-out desk, turns out there was actually 50% off the sale stuff! This has happened to me before at J. Crew. I am not complaining. Woo-hoo! Style Spy loves her some $15 pants!
I had a party to attend on the Saturday night after I bought these and had already plotted out my ensemble, but what's more festive than hot pink pants? Nothing, that's what. And since the pants were actually petites, they didn't need hemming, provided I wore them with heels. Which is kinda crazy, but whatever. The sizing at J. Crew is large and long. There must be some very tall people working there.
At any rate, I wore them with these
I even had long gloves, although mine are patent leather and once I got where I was going & removed my coat, the gloves came off as well. My friends are very tolerant of my fashion excesses, but not that tolerant. Besides, Pablo the Chef had contributed some very, very yummy empanadas to the proceedings, and there's no place for patent leather gloves when one is faced with yummy little empanadas.
(These are not Chef Pablo's yummy little empanadas. They probably aren't as good.)
It was an entirely silly outfit, but I was enjoying it. And it was a lovely party, filled with people I hadn't seen in quite a while & was very happy to catch up with. I was talking to two friends I haven't seen in ages, and they complimented my pants. I thanked them, and I mentioned that for years I didn't wear cords because the noise of them annoyed me. I hated that zip!zip!zip! sound when I walked. But, I joked, since my weight loss, my knees don't rub together so much when I walk, so I don't hear that sound so much! Hah, hah!
Hah, hah! my friends said. And we hate you for that! Hah-hah-hah!!
Of course my friends don't hate me. I don't imagine that for a moment. But still. When someone says that it does kind of draw you up short, if only for a heartbeat. And here's the thing: you might be surprised at how many people have said it, or something like it, to me since my weight loss last year. It's been quite startling.
First of all, let's get something straight: The Skinny Fairy does not come in the middle of the night once a week and whack me across the ass with her Magic Weight Loss Wand.
I worked to get to this point. I continue to work. Every day I make choices about what goes into my mouth. Every day I remind myself that I like my size 4 pants more than I like pizza. I'm not complaining, believe me, I eat plenty and I'm rarely hungry; but the truth of the matter is that almost every single day of my life I make the choice at least once not to eat or drink something because it will be excess calories that I don't need. I also run about 4 - 5 miles nearly every day of my life. So hating me for my size is like hating someone who saved up her money for a year in order to take a vacation. It didn't just drop into her lap -- she earned it. And for all those people who have made resentful comments about how "people like me" can eat whatever we want, think again.
Second of all, when did it become taken for granted that if your hips do not exceed a certain circumference you are immune to bad manners? The things people have said to me! You would not believe! "You are too skinny!" people have told me. "You need to gain some weight!" (For the record, two different doctors have checked me out & told me that I'm just fine, thankyouverymuch. I am slim but I am solid -- I have more muscle mass than a lot of people who are heavier than me.) When people have said things like this to me, I've wanted to ask them if they would ever in a million years walk up to someone they didn't know very well and tell her they thought she was overweight? "My god, Annabelle! You are too fat! You really need to take off a few pounds!"
Somehow, we don't imagine they would, do we? So why, then, is it okay to tell me I need to put on a few?
Lastly, but most importantly. I am not, thank god, eating disordered. I have a relatively normal relationship with food (and I am profoundly grateful for that because that is a family of issues that are mighty serious and brutally difficult to overcome), but you can't know that from looking at me. You can't tell that looking at anyone. Not everyone with an eating disorder is either obese or anorectic -- you cannot necessarily tell by looking at someone if they are struggling with this. So "clever" quips to someone about her body shape/size/weight/eating habits/etc. may be affecting her in ways you cannot predict.
The simple fact of the matter is: it's none of your damn business. So shut up about it. It would be nice if we could all stop making assumptions about people based on their appearances, but that seems unlikely until the world turns into Shangri-La. So the least we can do is keep our opinions about it to ourselves. And I'm as guilty as the next person, I freely admit, and have been working hard to monitor myself.
I don't want to be politically correct to a fault -- I was truly grateful to the people who said supportive things to me while I was losing my weight; and no one doesn't appreciate a sincere compliment or expression of concern from a friend. But let's not say, even as a joke, that we "hate" anyone we care about, and that includes ourselves, my friends. You shouldn't weigh your friends (the idea!) and you don't have to weigh your portions or even yourself if that's not your thing, but please -- weigh your words.
Images: Style Spy, wizardofdraws.com, laylita.com, bedbathandbeyond.com