What no longer fits

Tomorrow I start teaching again. And, another reminder that the photo I posted a few days ago of me dancing is from eleven(ty-million) years ago – a point that’s very relevant to this story.

About an hour ago, I dug out some dance attire that I haven’t worn in years. What you see here is what I’ve held onto after two decades of teaching – 32 pairs of dance pants, 20 sports bras in almost every color, and about two dozen tops (not pictured here). It’s a lot, I’ll admit… but this is not a commentary on consumerism. Not today at least.

I laid all this business out on my bed to give myself a freakin’ reality check. I can no longer squeeze my midlife body into the majority of these pieces; and even when I do, I feel actual-comfort in very few. These are remnants of my former self… the one who taught 7-10 classes a week, who never ever felt thin enough (size 6, damnit, why not a 4?!), and who felt perpetually guilty about her never pure-enough choices. The wellness world afforded me many gifts, but orthorexic preoccupation with my eating habits certainly isn’t one of ‘em.

And all of the above is pretty f’ed up when you consider the fact that I actually DID FIT into all this… and the ‘cult’ural mold of wellness that I was selling. Writing this post, the word “fit”ness is really taking on a whole new meaning. I was (and still am) granted white-woman thin privilege with very little effort, but even so I continually somehow often feel like I’m way too much AND never small enough, all at once and at the same time.

And I’m working on this. As I’m a forty-seven year old woman, today I’m reminding myself that all I need is one pair of pants, a bra than I can tolerate for exactly two hours (which is how long I’m willing to wear one), and a whole lot of tender love and kindness when I meet my reflection in the mirror tomorrow morning.

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