I Hate Pants

I woke up this morning with the urge to write this post so what I had planned for today will be up tomorrow. Now “hate” is a strong word. And I know that pants, especially given the fact that it’s sleeting outside in CT right now, are necessary at times. But I have to say, pants are my least favorite article of clothing. Pants have the power (or I give them the power) to completely change my mood. Pants give me a number that my mind can grasp upon and use to beat me up. Pants are a form of measurement, and when the measuring consists of noticing that you absolutely don’t need a belt with pants you used to need one with, it’s really enough to make you want to throw the pants in a heap and live in yoga pants.

Maxis are nice too.

Bikinis get a bad rap as being the dreaded article of clothing for those with body image issues. But I beg to differ. At least when I wear a bikini, I can put something on over it to cover it up and feel fine. Bikinis have stretchy waists that are sometimes even adjustable. Though I’ve been experiencing anxiety about wearing a bathing suit in Florida at the end of this month, it isn’t comparable to the anxiety I feel each morning I wake up and have to put on a pair of jeans that have just been washed.

Cover-up? Check. No pants? DOUBLE CHECK.

Poolside at our FL condo. Cover-up? Check. No pants? DOUBLE CHECK. The doofy hat is just a bonus.

I will be honest and say that loose pants give me reassurance. They make me feel “skinny“…they make me feel safe. But pants sizes also give me reassurance. So right now I’m in this place where I could buy pants one size up and wear a belt with them and enjoy that loose feeling, but the fact that they are one size up would make me feel like a failure. So instead I keep wearing my same pants, and they fit fine right now, but I keep circling back to the fact that I used to wear a belt with them. That fact makes it apparent that I’ve gained weight (which hello is the point of recovery, but anyone in recovery knows that it sucks to realize you’ve gained weight) and also makes me scared of the day I put on my pants and they DON’T fit. Each morning that I get out of bed and put them on, I’m afraid that day has arrived. I fear it’s inevitable  – that one day I’m going to be unable to fit into my pants and have to buy new ones.

Back at my lowest weight I made sure not to buy new pants that were super small. I didn’t want to give myself a size 00 pair of pants to become addicted to fitting into…I know myself. So I lived in really baggy jeans, yoga pants, and leggings. Then I started to be able to wear my jeans again, and I started paying way too much attention to what size each pair of pants was, how that particular size fit me, how the fit changed from day to day. Such a catch-22…as I’ve made progress in recovery I’ve been able to wear pants more and leggings less, but the pants-wearing itself only gives my mind more ammo with which to attack me.

Before a night out my senior year of college - leggings instead of jeans because a belt would ruin the outfit and all my jeans were too big.

Before a night out my senior year of college – leggings instead of jeans because a belt would ruin the outfit and all my jeans were too big.

I was really inspired by a post Carly did where she mentioned that she cut the size tags out of her jeans. I feel like if I were to do that it wouldn’t make a difference because at this point I’ve completely memorized what size each pair of pants is. But that’s also just partially an excuse…I seriously have an issue with not being able to see the label on each pair so that I can “track” my weight. I don’t use a scale and haven’t used one for a couple of years now, so I need SOMETHING to measure myself by. The size of my pants has become almost like my scale. I may not let the amount I weigh define me because I don’t KNOW how much I weigh, but I certainly let the size of my pants define me.

So that’s why I hate them. But instead of shunning them and living in stretchy-waisted things, I’m going to keep wearing them. Because they do make certain outfits. They do look nice and keep my legs warm in the winter. They come in fun colors like floral print or coral. There are plenty of good reasons not to hate pants! I hope that a day comes when I don’t hate pants, when I don’t pay super-micro-close attention to how they fit from day to day, and when I know that I am so much more than the label on each pair. I just had to get this rant out, because I thought a lot about how my pants fit all weekend long, and those thoughts definitely got in the way of enjoying myself at times.

How do you feel about pants?

Do you tend to get stuck on the size and/or fit of your pants?

Is there a certain article of clothing you struggle to feel confident in?

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