Tuesday, September 25, 2012


I KNOW! I’m pretty excited myself, so I can imagine how you’re feeling about it.

Granted, you don’t care much, but you must understand what a big deal this is. Not that you’ll care more, but just so you know: it is very difficult for me to find pants. Oh sure, they’re in stores everywhere, but none of them fit me. They’re too short, or the butt sags, or they’re too short.

Mostly what I’m saying is, they’re too short. Or the butts sag. And I mostly wear jeans because I’m not comfortable in pants – pants always make me remember junior high when my sister made me a pair of pants that were so big on me everyone at school laughed at me. So we went to a place that has the kind of jeans that fit me – you know the ones I mean – far too expensive, but they have them in long and they appear to fit even after I wash them. I was collecting some to try on, and the helpful sales guy said, “Do you want to take a 12 regular just in case?”

“Just in case of what? I decide I want capris?”

Yes. I am a size 12. I KNOW! That’s a plus size model size!

I didn’t start off this big. You know how someone like me gets this big? We start off being skinny, with everyone laughing at us. (And by us, I mean me.) We leave home at 18, go to basic training, lose a couple of pounds, then go to Monterey, California, for awhile, and gain A LOT OF POUNDS. At the time there were chow halls to choose from: Air Force, Army, and Navy, and we could go to whichever random chow hall we wanted, depending on what sounded the best. The Navy does have the best food, by the way. Not only that, but a short walk downhill was downtown Monterey, filled with fabulous restaurants. (Of course, we couldn’t walk back up the hill after pigging out, so we’d take a taxi back.)

And so I gained weight.

Then I lost weight.

And gained weight. And because I’m such a big girl anyway (by which I mean, I’m taller than the average . . . girl) no one seems to notice so much when I gain weight. Anyway, eventually how it works is that the pounds don’t go away as easily as they got there, and you, or I, end up this size.

So my legs are long, my butt is little, and waist is . . . well, hidden pretty well, by the fat.

Did you know that people who carry their weight in their stomach are at greater risk of dropping dead of fat-related causes than people who carry it in their hips? I do not make this stuff up.

Anyway, so I tried on some jeans, which have to be boot cut because otherwise, well, I can’t wear my red boots, and I bought a pair.

Made my week.

I know. With everything that’s going on in the world, how can something like this make me happy?

For one thing, I don’t go shopping much. To fortify myself for this event I had a 5-Hour Energy first. (Yes! They work for FIVE HOURS!) So when I do go shopping, it’s a big deal.

For another thing, I have had a really rough summer. I have been engaged in hand-to-brain combat with depression, and while I’m now winning it was rough going for a bit.

And for yet another thing, every day when I wake up I hear more bad news. People I love are sick, sad, depressed, the environment is going to hell, there’s killers running loose in the streets, zombie bees are now in Washington, there’s some sort of political thing going on, people are homeless, jobless, hopeless, and there’s a dead baby panda somewhere. Cripes, it never ends. Every day I hear something horrible.

Man, life sucks sometimes, doesn’t it?

Here’s the thing. There is always going to be something going on that I can be outraged about. There will always be sadness and despair and people doing horrible things to other people. (And what the hell is that all about anyway? That’s just not right.) But I can’t fix it, though I would really like to. Sometimes it’s all I can do to hang on to what little piece of sanity I have. And I think a lot of us are in the same boat, metaphorically speaking.

Obviously. If only we all had boats, that would make life more fun.

So like I say in my enormously popular book (insert self-serving statement HERE), you have to hang on to whatever pieces of joy you can, no matter how fleeting.

My friends hate it when I tell them that. “But I don’t want to!” They tell me, “I’m unhappy!” So I try not to run around acting as if I have the answers, because I don’t. I do know that our time here is fleeting, and that we have to really work at finding the little things that make us happy, the things that make it possible for us to look at the icky things and work around them, if we can, or help other people with their icky things. Everyone runs into icky things sometime, and they can beat you down.

Look for the light, in whatever you do. Take the little pieces of joy you can and build on them. It’s all I’ve got for the moment, but sometimes a tiny bit of light is all you need.


  1. And if it's finding a pair of jeans that fit that makes you happy, it makes ME happy! (Geez - I'd love to find a pair of jeans that fit.)

  2. Ditto. I have the exact opposite problem...my legs are too short and I have more butt than waist. Jeans are not easy to find at either end of the spectrum. This, by the way, is a great article.

  3. I don't think some people realize just how celebratory the occasion of finding jeans that FIT, is!!!!