Wednesday, July 25, 2007

Scenes from the Women's Department

With the celebration looming for Birthday, Version 29 and a hamper full of dirty clothes, I decided to treat myself for a new outfit to wear to party in...

Discovery No. 1--Something is happening!

Finally, finally, finally...after months of struggling, exercising, and eating right I've started shrinking! My first hint was while I was in the lingerie department at Nordstrom. With their Anniversary Sale going on and my favorite line of bras marked down, I figured it was as good a time as any to stock up. After noticing I could use a further hook on my regular size, I went optimistic and got a bra that was one band size smaller...and guess fit! It actually fit better than my old size so guess who started doing the happy dance in the fitting room? That's right...ME!

The news only got better when I finally made my way into the Big Girls Department and tried on a pair of jeans. After noticing my current size is gettin' a little saggy in the rear, I tried on one size down and hallelujah! They fit too! (Okay, I confess--there's a teeny bit of muffin top. But it's not a lot and it's nothing a good pair of Spanx won't fix. Besides--when I tried on my current size, it was too big, so I went with the lesser of two evils. Small bit of muffin top trumps a baggy butt!)

Discovery No. 2--More good people out there are starting to realize the world is made up of women who are bigger than a size 10.

And by good people, I mean designers. Today, I noticed there was a plus line from Calvin Klein and I bought jeans from the Michael Kors women's line. Wow...designers realizing even fat women like nice clothing. Only took a lifetime to get there, but they finally did.

Now Mike...think you can get more of your designer buds on board? Seriously. Let's look at the facts. There are millions of overweight women in the U.S. They have to wear clothes. Most of them would like to wear nice clothes. I don't know about you, but the business woman in me sees a market with lots and lots of money to spend. So make some bigger clothing and make some bigger profits. Isn't that a win/win?

Discovery No. 3--America's obesity problem is really, really bad. It's also heartbreaking.

While I was happily celebrating the fact I was going down in sizes, I watched helplessy as a girl young enough to still be carrying a doll had to buy clothing in the women's department. And she cried to her mom that nothing was pretty enough, that her friends would make fun of her, that she didn't like anything.

Her mother--extremely heavy in her own right--just told her to face it--this was the department where they had to shop and she was "much too big to shop in juniors." That only made the little girl cry worse. They finally left and as I made my way to the counter to pay for my jeans, the salesgirl just shook her head and said, "That was the saddest thing. That girl was only 10."

You've got to figure, at age 10, you're much too young to be doing groceries. You're much too young to be making your meals. You're still pretty dependent on the adults around you to feed and clothe you. Sure, you can ask for the junk, but your parents have to be able to say no. And when you get to the point you're not even a teen and you're shopping in the women's department, it's your parents responsibility to find a way to stop the madness.

I know that I'm completely to blame for the situation I am in. I am old enough to make the decisions about what I buy at the store and what I cook for my meals. I am old enough to drive myself to the gym. And I'm old enough to realize what I was doing to my body was anything but good. I was old enough to put a stop to it.

I've often told Mr. CCC that when we have children, I am hell bent on making sure they learn from an early age how important fruit and vegetables are. I want them to see fast food as an occasional treat--not a daily meal. I want them to play sports, to be active, to never experience the humiliation I went through on the playground when my classmates made fun of me. I never want my children to battle their weight and have the kind of unhealthy relationship I have had with food for most of my life.

Seeing that girl clutching a doll and rifling through size 2X tops only reinforced those thoughts in me. So maybe part of me is doing this for someone else--someone I have yet to meet, someone I have yet to hold but someone I already know I will love with all my heart.

Because after all, if I can't be a healthy example for my (future) kids, who will ? And I'll be damned if I ever have a daughter have to buy back-to-school clothes in a department I don't plan on setting foot into myself for much longer...


Livy said...

First up, big hugs and kisses to you for the bra and jeans!! Yay!! I can't wait to experience that feeling myself!
As for the young girl.. it did bring a tear to my eye. But, you know what, Monkey say, Monkey do, anything that you do, I DO TOO!! Live on Mcains oven fries and chicken nuggets, and your kids will know nothing else. Take them to Maccas 3 nights a week because it's easy, get pizza often because you are working late and can't be bothered cooking. Before you know it, it's your kid that's fat, not someone elses. My girls eat everything from sushi, to yogurt, to malasian curry. The LOVE salad, and ADORE fresh veges. They also love brussel sprouts and brocoli! Why? Because they are familiar with these foods! Because from 1 year old, everything I ate, they also had a chance to try. It's also today's inactivity that make kids fat. We no longer play cricket on the weekend with the neighborhood kids, we are either being ferried around to piano lessons by parents who are trying to live their dreams through us, or sitting in front of the X-box, playing some blood thirsty violent game. No wonder our kids are screwed up, looking at what we are providing them with.

Lora said...

That really is heartbreaking about the little girl...I see it all the time when I teach too. I don't really remember more than one or two heavy kids when I was in school as a was a rarity. Nowadays it's the norm.
I think kids don't move enough! No one walks to school anymore, phys-ed class is more about paperwork than actual physical activity - all kids do is watch TV, play video games or IM each other. And noone sits down to a family meal anymore. Something's gotta' give!

Anonymous said...

Yay for you on the new jeans and bra size! That's an awesome feeling isn't it?

Your fear is also my fear and I've mentioned it many times in my blog. I want to get a hold of my food obsessions before I pass them on to my future children. I don't want food to be the focus of my chidren's lives like it has mine for so many years. I want them to see it as nourishment not as a treat or a way to soothe themselves. It's a battle but I'm determined to win!

I also plan on instilling the importance of physical activity at a young age. I'll make it fun and a family affair so it won't be something to dread later on in life. I was always athletic as a chld though so hopefully this part won't be too difficult.

BigLoser said...

Wow...the segment about the 10 yr old, literally bought tears to my eyes. Shopping in the women's department at 10 years old is insane!!! Of course I would look at the parent too, but as you pointed out, the parent is battling her own weight. She is probably not even THINKING about her daughter and that's even sadder.

On a more positive note, congrats on going down a size in your jeans and your bra - *doing the happy dance with you* lol

MHQ said...

Congrats on the bra and jeans!!!!! That feeling is oh, so fantastic!

I have to completely agree with you. One of my biggest fears is having a child as obsessed with food as I am. I consider myself a fairly healthy eater but my obsession with food and my body is something that I have never been able to overcome. Now that I have a little life growing inside of me, I'm not going to lie, I am freaking out about it all. It's wonderful to see that I am not alone in this battle with my head...and mouth. :)