I turned thirty-one years old this year. Thirty-one before I finally decided to give exercise a try. Thirty-one when I signed up for my first 5k. There are exactly thirty-one days until the big race. As of this morning I’ve lost thirty-one pounds.
It looks like I have a new lucky number. Maybe I should buy a Power-Ball ticket. Oh wait, I live in Utah.
When I tried on and bought a pair of size fourteen jeans a couple of weeks ago I thought about writing about it. This was a huge event in my life, after all. But even though I tried on three pairs of jeans that size and they all fit – I couldn’t convince myself that it wasn’t just a fluke. I could still wear my old pants, so it had to be a fluke. Didn’t it?
Then I noticed when I wore the fourteens I kept having to grab the waist-band and shimmy them back up into place. And as the day wore on, the pants got bigger. And bigger. A belt didn’t help much. I’ve run out of notches that will actually provide any “cinch”.
I started thinking “Maybe twelves? No, perish the thought. You’ll never fit in a twelve.”
But the jeans wouldn’t stay up.
Saturday night we went to a movie at the Gateway and we had thirty minutes to kill before show time. I dragged Toby to down to the Gap so I could try on some jeans.
Just walking into the Gap is intimidating if you’re short and round. As if the waif-like sales people weren’t enough, they have dozens of life-size cardboard cutouts of models, wearing the jeans. You know, so you can see how they are supposed to look. On a tall, thin person. Then, just over the register and in front of the fitting rooms they have a forty foot banner of a model in skinny jeans, sprawled on her back with a come-hither expression.
I chickened out and tried on a pair of fourteens and couldn’t even get them buttoned. My insecurities about “being” a fourteen flared up like a heat rash in the jungle. Fluke, fluke fluke!
I threw on my own clothes and found Toby. But, being Toby, he wouldn’t let it go. He insisted I try on other styles. And that I try a twelve. The last jeans I had tried on turned out to be slim-cut, so I agreed to try on the “curvy” cut.
Let me preface what happened next by saying that I have never been a size twelve at any point. There was a five minute patch in college when I wore a tight fourteen and I am pretty sure I leapt right from children’s sizes to a junior thirteen when I was in sixth or seventh grade.
It was touch and go getting over the hips and thighs. I almost didn’t finish. But then once they were all the way on….the curvy jeans fit. In a twelve. And I could still draw breath, feel my toes and walk. In a twelve.
Excuse me while I go repeat my little victory dance.