Friday, March 9, 2012

Then and Now

I've considered myself to be "fat" (you know, the f-word) since I was about 10 years old and my classmates starting saying I was fat. That was 22 years ago and it's only been since joining WW that I've stopped seeing myself as fat and started seeing myself as curvy, fit and healthy.

The irony is that, even at 186.8 lb, I'm still heavier than I ever was at 10 or my teens or even in my 20s. Thinking back, I'd love to be that size again (okay, not the size of a 10-year-old, but you know what I mean). I'm finally on my way to getting there but I never weighed myself back then so I don't know what my target weight is. But I think this is a good thing because I don't want to be beholden to a target number that seems daunting or so out of reach as to discourage me.

So how will I know? The short answer: Reitman's.

(Okay, I'll also give the long answer.)

Growing up in Parry Sound, there weren't a lot of clothing stores for the discerning teen - or any teen, really. There was one trendy store, where you could buy $100 pairs of jeans and logo-emblazoned tees and sweaters. Like any label-conscious teen, I shopped there, but couldn't always afford it. When Reitman's arrived, it was a blessing, as there were suddenly shirts, skirts and casual pants I could buy for decent prices that fit me well. I was also a regular church-goer at this time, so I bought a lot of my dress clothes there, too. I still remember my favourite pair of cargo pants came from Reitman's - and my mom kept wearing them! I even bought her her own pair (in a different colour, so as to differentiate) but she kept wearing mine. Hmph!

Even as a teenager, I was conscious of the size on the label and wanted to keep that number as low as possible. I generally fit into a size 11 at Reitman's, but sometimes had to go for a size 13 - which was soul crushing, to say the least. I think it was also the largest size at the time, which was a double-whammy; no teenager wants to be the biggest size in the store!

Nowadays, I still find myself perusing Reitman's and I've bought a few things from there over the past few years. Most recently, I bought a pair of jeans, size 13 (which is no longer the largest size, but is still size 13). I'm wearing those jeans today and they're getting baggy on me. THIS is the indicator that means so much to me, that I'm shrinking out of one size and into another, the same size I fit into in high school!

(Now I understand that a size 11 in 1995 and a size 11 in 2012 could be very different. But just go with me on this, please?)

Really, it's just taking the focus off one number (weight) and putting it on another (clothing size) but since I never weighed myself before I started my weight loss odyssey, I don't know what my weight was back then. Short of bugging my now-retired family doctor from those years to check old patient files to find my weight (which I'm sure would never happen anyways) the only measure I have is clothing sizes.

And despite my desire to not focus so much on my weight and clothing sizes, I do need something to measure, at least until I get to my goal weight. I'm hoping that once I hit that target, I'll be able to put the focus more on maintaining my good eating and exercise habits and weighing in will help keep me on track, but won't my main focus. No matter what, though, the scale and the clothing sizes are going down and THAT is just what I want!

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