“What does it matter if you are pretty as long as you are with your uncle and having a good time?”
Wise words from an eight year old fashionista daughter to her mom.
Words that came after spending an hour watching her mom try on dresses for an upcoming (as in five days from now) black tie event to celebrate the 85th birthday of a family member.
Words that were inspired by watching her mom cry because the ruched dress that looked pretty fabulous in the front, looked awful in the back, even with pins and needles and the skilled seamstress that could alter the dress for a short waisted body.
Words that as Principessa spoke them, engulfed me. I had nothing left in my emotional arsenal other than to kiss her gently on the forehead and say “you are right.”
Nothing in my closet
Here is the thing. Nothing in my closet fits me. Nothing. None of the black tie formal dresses that I have worn over the years come even close to to fitting. And the truth is that I have known this. I have known about this event for months. I have had time to shop and find the perfect black tie dress…but I was not ready to accept my body’s current reality. I secretly kept hoping that with just a little more time I could weasel my way into one of those older dresses with the help of spanx or maybe some other miracle.
But of course, that did not happen. Because over the course of the last year, I have gained weight instead of losing it. Although I have started back down the path of running, it has not been enough. Not only has my weight gone up, but so has my blood pressure (as in, the CVS One Minute Clinic nurse would not prescribe a stronger decongestant to me because my blood pressure was THAT high).
I have talked a great game, but implemented nothing.
And yet, I continued to hope, that my body would change over night just because.
But it has not changed.
I could tell you that I am ready. That I am determined and committed. That I will do better this time. Except that I have written and said and even convinced myself of those words before. And yet, here I am.
I am not ready to accept this. This reality. This me. But until something deep inside me is ready to finally pick up the pieces and make the change, I must find a way to accept the now. Or at least dry the tears and quiet my insecurities for a few days, long enough to allow myself to be fully present in a celebration of life and joy with family and friends.
Because if nothing else, the words of my darling and incredibly wise eight year old daughter, remind me…in the big picture, what I look like does not matter. Nothing about my weight loss, or lack there of matters.
What matters is being together. Celebrating. Laughing. Enjoying.
The tears will be there for another day. Or not. For this particular weekend, I will wear a sequined dress that is comfortable and fun even if it is not fantastic and stunning. I will watch my Uncle celebrate 85 years of hard work and a life well lived. I will hold my husband’s hand. I will dance. I will enjoy making new memories with my parents and my cousins. I will laugh out loud while catching up with parents of friends of mine from way back when.
The rest…it will happen. When I am ready. But for now, I am going to try to just be me.
Whatever me looks like in this moment.
And if I cannot muster that, I will fake it until I can.