Every spring and fall, I switch out the clothes in my closet. In the fall, I bring out my sweaters and put my shorts away in a box. When spring begins to dawn, I drag out all my tank tops and say adiós to my leggings and boots.
This rearranging often sparks some excitement, as I find favorite pieces I haven’t worn in a few months. But then I stumble across an item that doesn’t fit anymore. A pair of shorts that flattens my butt into nothing. A shirt so tight it tries to sever my arms from my body.
Has my body really changed that much in the last few months? What has happened to me?
Suddenly, I’m not having fun anymore.
I struggle to breathe deeply, to remain mindful. I’m crushed under the weight of an $8 piece of fabric.
And yet, I don’t discard the ill-fitting garment. I hang it in the center of the closet, as a daily reminder that I’m a has-been.
I don’t feel good enough to enjoy the fresh season ahead. I’m unwilling to present myself confidently to the world until I can fit in this outfit again. Everything will be okay again, once I get back to the way I was.
Is this how we go through life?
Change is naturally frightening. But we are meant to outgrow things. Suddenly we look back, and what we had is no longer big enough to hold the fullness of our current life.
It can seem sad, in a way. But what is sadder is starving yourself down into a smaller, thinner, younger being that doesn’t support the weight of the life you’ve accumulated.
Stop stuffing yourself into something that doesn’t fit. Go to the store and buy a shirt that makes you feel beautiful and confident. Find something that makes you feel alive, and cling to that while you navigate this new season of your life.