Recovering The SelfA Journal of Hope and Healing

Home and Garden

My Wardrobe Closet

by Evelyn Horan

When spring approaches, I begin to organize and review the clothes in my closet. All winter clothing needs to be relegated to the back area. Happily, I relinquish those heavyweight items that were warm and necessary for the cold season but no longer necessary.wardrobecloset

Now I approach spring and summer items with satisfaction. Their bagginess and loose fit are acceptable to most women, and sometimes when alone in the house, I have allowed myself the luxury of removing the “harness” that plagues my upper torso. I’m sure you get my meaning, and I’m hoping you’ve also experienced the delicious sigh of relief that comes with such freedom from restriction.

Now, as I review the rest of my wardrobe with a skeptical eye, I notice certain articles of clothing, as being unable to wear again. Often in days past, despite all my good intentions, I had indulged myself in tasty after dinner desserts and TV snacks. Now, I must face the facts. I did not lose weight during the winter, (as I had promised myself to do) and I wonder whether I shall ever fit into any of these spring and summer clothes again.

I have hung on to some faded memories of dresses, pant suits and other outfits, that I wore only a mere ten years ago when I was a size 12.  They are still quite wearable. Now the question arises. Should I keep them longer with the dim hope that someday, I can wear them when I am “slim again”? I sigh, and touch them with loving remembrance.

Looking in the mirror, I wonder with despair, “What has happened to my torso? Where is my waistline? Why is my trunk full and square and my arms and legs a size far beyond when I was a size 12?”

I must lie down and think about this rotten trick nature has played on me. I remind myself, ” I could have lost weight when I was ill with the flu in January, but I recovered quickly and nothing changed.”

And I could have been walking on the treadmill more often, but I must admit,  I ignored it most of the time, and when I did exercise with it, the times were few and not long enough. With a sigh, I firmly tell myself, “No more sugary snacks and junk food for me!’

With new resolve, I decide to retain only a few special size 12 outfits I can’t give up, and the others, I hastily remove from their hangers and save for the Salvation Army.  At this time, my size l4’s are a bit snug, because the upper part of a buttoned-down-blouse-front gaps open at times, revealing my white bra. I am ever conscious and annoyed when I notice, and I understand some women have solved this problem by inserting snaps on the inside part of the button areas.

Since I have broad shoulders, like my German mother, and a narrower “cracker-shaped” behind, like my grandmother, my pants are usually an acceptable fit, but I have always needed a larger size for the top. So I must tolerate a gaping top for a hip fit, or go to a larger size where the pants are a bit baggy. I am comfortable enough with a size l6 that seems  to be okay, overall, even though my backside is lost.

But, I am beginning to opt out for comfort in my later years. I’m, at last, resigned to the truth that a size 12 is a distant memory—and that I can make do at times, with a tight-fitting size 14, but more often than not, I shall happily choose the size 16’s which now, seem to be growing a bit snug as well!

Now, I can begin to discard and organize my wardrobe closet with a purpose. Also, I remind myself, I must be more disciplined about my eating habits as I try to “age with a cheerful attitude.”

About the Author

Evelyn Horan is a former teacher/counselor. Her articles and stories have been published many times in periodicals for children and adults in both secular and religious publications. She holds General Elementary, General Secondary, Pupil Personnel, and also School Psychologist life credentials in the state of California. Horan is the author of a number of books including Aging Requires a Gentle Attitude. Learn more about her work at

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