home again, home again
I knew I'd officially been gone from home too long when this conversation transpired:
Amy: [snip] costume research while chicken cooks. hi.
Brian: I am also cooking chicken
Amy: the stuff you had in the fridge?
Two three-day Atlanta weekends in a row, separated by only three full days home, bordered on too much, no matter how much I adore Brian and Suzan. But "too much" is the summary of the summer, as we gradually divert our energies and interest away from the mundane chores of daily life into the sucking void that is dragon*con, techops, and in my case, dragon*conTV.
The panic hit me sometime on Saturday morning. I know this panic well. The first year, it was "what have I gotten myself into?" The second year, "what was I thinking, and why am I doing this again?" The third, "How am I going to get all these slides done for Brian?" This year? "Oh, hell. Preparation is futile. Why worry?"
Still, it's good to be home. The cats have filed official grievances; if the unpaid scritchie debt isn't paid within 24 hours, they're going to be forced to resort to truly scary measures.
The bad part is now figuring out what the hell is going on with me, weight-wise. I know what I had to eat this weekend (please, don't make me recount it in detail, because I could, that's just how neurotic I am) and I know that there's no conceivable way that I've gained five and a half pounds since Friday morning.
It just doesn't work that way. Deep down, I know it doesn't, but I stood there on the scale and stared at the number it was telling me and whispered to myself, "This can't be right. It just can't be." I did my workout, went back to the scale, and weighed myself again. Still the same. I went home very confused, and tried on the size 14 jeans. They wouldn't fit, and now that I concentrated, I could feel the difference. Something wasn't quite right.
As if that wasn't enough to make me want to curl up into a little ball for a while, I spent a little while this afternoon talking with Jake, who agreed to participate in the tech staff dress-up night (pirates and wenches) if I did. If I showed up as a wench, he'd show up as a pirate, and we'd call it square.
Sure, I thought, no big deal. I got a costume recommendation from Joyce and blithely went on my way. Then, when I realized that I should probably check fabric requirements, I discovered that having lost 25 pounds has not made a damned bit of difference when it comes to sewing patterns.
I might be a size 14 or 16 in virtually everything else, but according to the pattern Joyce pointed out to me, I didn't even qualify as a size 20. Judging by the change between sizes, I was likely either a 22 or a 24 in that pattern. The pattern stopped at 20.
This was a reminder of everything I'd been - everything I've been busting my ass to get out of for the past six months. I'm tired of being the woman that can't find clothes that fit; who is always four inches too short or four sizes too big.
It's hard to buy into your friends' statements that you're fine and lovely (or whatever) the way you are when you can't buy clothes or sewing patterns because, as far as clothing and pattern designers are concerned, you just don't exist.
I do exist. I'm tired of apologizing for my shape or my size. I'm sick of looking in the mirror and hating what I see, of how seeing photos of me throws me into a serious tailspin because it becomes so obvious how far I still have to go.
I just want to wear a costume. I want desperately to be able to fit in; to have group photos taken and not stick out as the fat girl, to be just another face in the crowd and not the one that people look at and quietly imagine what she'd look like if she was at a better weight.
Maybe the rest of you don't see me that way, but I do.
I'm going to take a chance on this costume and hope something will get worked out. I can make the chemise and skirt myself, but the bodice (which must be fitted) will require a pattern and some help from a more experienced seamstress. I can at least work on the chemise and skirt and hope that somehow, in the meantime, I will find a solution for the bodice.
I keep promising myself that next year, it won't be like this. I hope that's true.