For fifty years of my life, for six, sometimes seven days a week, I wore what my grandmother called “Sunday best.” I dressed up daily, put on makeup, fixed and sprayed my hair. I wore heels. And then I retired.
Except for church on Sunday, I no longer needed to put on makeup daily. I stopped fixing my hair and only ran my fingers through my short do. I wore flip flops and house shoes, but every three or four days, I ran out of things to wear. I needed more play clothes in my rotation.
Before I went shopping, I assessed what I had available and found a box of hand-me-downs my sons had given me when they moved away. It was full of extra-large tee-shirts and a stack of men’s, large, gray sweatpants.
Up to then, I had ignored my weight gain; my dress slacks cut into my middle and I sometimes wore them without buttoning or hooking the waist. I bought the larger dresses that take up the back half of the dress rack in stores.
The moment I tried on my first sweat pant, they became my wardrobe staple. I wore them everywhere, every time, and I even considered pairing them with a nice top and knee high boots and wear them to church.
By the second year, they started to show wear and I considered buying more, but it was time to face the truth. I needed to work off the weight. I joined a gym and replaced the sweat pants with yoga pants. Yoga pants are what the Walmart Mom wears to Target. I wanted to recover some of my former dignity and worked on my weight and health. I upped the ratio of yoga pants to sweat pants, and I did wear them to church on several occasions.
This year I lost over 30 lbs and downed my pant size to three times smaller than before. It was time to go through my wardrobe and give away a few items before I bought more. I kept a few good pairs of yoga pants, but there at the bottom of the drawer was a pair of sweat pants. I measured them against my body. They fit, but then I walked over to the donation bag and stuffed them in among the rest of the clothes I no longer wanted.
I am considering leggings next.