I went dress shopping a few weeks ago with my husband. After scouring the racks for what seemed like hours, I finally found a few dresses that I liked. As I looked at the sizes on the tags, I gravitated towards the ones with single digits. Because for some crazy reason I thought that I had to fit into them.
I was just setting myself up for disaster.
One by one, I tried the dresses on. They were each too snug. I felt a lump forming in my throat and my stomach turning in knots, my eyes started to well up with tears. Insecurity and unworthiness were starting to creep in. Frustrated, I sat in the dressing room and starred at the pile of dresses. I tried the one that I liked the most back on and went out and stood in front of my husband and I asked him what he thought.
“I really love that one, babe. It looks beautiful. But how do you feel in it right now?” He asked.
I stood in front of the mirror and pondered for a minute. The dress was beautiful, but it just didn’t fit me quite right in a couple of places. And for some stupid reason, I was so stuck on the number on the inside of the tag.
“How do you feel right now?” My husband’s words kept ringing in my ears. I didn’t feel beautiful; I felt stuck in a size that I wanted so badly that just wasn’t going to happen. That was when I decided I was done. I needed a size that fit me right now. I needed to feel beautiful in the present.
So out of the dressing room I went and I grabbed the dress in a couple of sizes up. Feeling my confidence starting to grow, I walked back into the dressing room with my double-digit dress, slipped off the single digit one and stepped into the larger size.
I walked out and had my husband zip up the back of the dress for me. I took a few steps forward and looked up in the mirror. My husband gasped in awe. I smiled with joy. The lump in my throat disappeared and my stomach instantly settled. This was the dress. I felt beautiful right now.Not in the size that I fit into years ago. Not in the size I wanted to be in the future. I felt beautiful in the size of right now.
I think as women, we often get so stuck in what our bodies used to look like in the past and get caught up in how we want them to look in the future. We tend to let the number on the inside of the tag determine the beauty we feel in our hearts and we lose the magic of the present moment. We negate the loveliness of what we see in the mirror and let perfectionism ruin the here and now.
“I’m not going to buy a bathing suit until I lose 15 more pounds.”
“I’m not going to wear shorts unless I absolutely have to.”
“I’m going to keep all of these jeans from college because maybe I will be able to wear them again.”
“I’m not going to get in the pool and play with my kids this summer because I don’t want anyone to see me in my bathing suit.”
“I’m not going to feel beautiful until I look a certain way. Then I will be happy with what I see in the mirror.”
Do any of these sound familiar? Because I know that they’ve sounded familiar to me over the years.
As we enter into the summer season of shorts and tank tops, bathing suits and backyard barbeques, don’t get so caught up chasing the size of the future and wishing for the one of the past that you miss the beauty in the size of right now, friend. The right now that sustained, gave, and nurtures life of the little people you love more than anything in this world. Because to love the size of right now is to live in the joy of the moment.
There’s no better time than the present, ladies. And there no better size than it, either.