I love leggings. I used to be freaked out by them. The way they hugged my curves, highlighted my mom-butt, and left nothing a mystery about the diameter and circumference of my thighs. But since I’ve been working from home, I bought a few pairs to wear around the house. And – I gotta tell you – I ABSOLUTELY love leggings!
But there’s still something sketchy (not just stretchy) about them.
About a week ago, I decided to “check in” with my bathroom scale. Ufda. Not quite what I expected, but I probably shouldn’t have been that surprised.
When the weather turned to fall, all I wanted to do was bake. After all, it was quality time with my daughter and a tasty result. Add to it a stay-at-home Christmas where we didn’t want to forego our favorite holiday goodies and – Voila!
Normally, I’m kept accountable by my clothing. Jeans always provide a bluntly honest perspective on my caloric intake and remind me to “cut it back or be cut in half.” But I haven’t worn jeans in weeks, maybe even months. I’ve been living in my leggings and loving it.
Emerging from the bathroom I shouted out the new truth I’d been confronted with….
“Leggings are a lie!” I told my husband. “They don’t tell you what’s really going on, they cover it up. They enable you!”
After my 10 minute monologue on the deceitfulness of these soft-knit denim imposters, he asked me if I was going to stop wearing them. “No way! I love leggings! They’re so comfortable and forgiving.”
You see I loved the freedom and the comfort of these condemnationless bottoms. I enjoyed the holidays. I loved making and sampling all the baked goods. And if my pants – my wonderful leggings – could be forgiving, maybe I owed that same grace to myself.
Grace is a truth I need to embrace right now. Last month was rough for many reasons, but for time’s sake I’ll just name one. Physical pain has been a part of my life for longer than I want to admit and last month it was at a premium. Playing the roulette of “will it be a migraine or just a headache today?” was the daily question. I barely slept, was on a less-than-healthy dose of anti-inflammatories, and my muscles mistook a walk up the stairs for marathon training.
Pain is discouraging, sometimes debilitating, and often, it feels as if it’s weighing down my very soul. I don’t feel like myself when I’m in pain. I can’t do the things I want to do or be the person, mom, wife, or friend I want to be.
Furthermore, I am a sports lover! I coach sports, play sports, go hiking, love to wrestle with my kids, and generally consider myself an “active” and “fit” person. But it’s absolutely soul-crushing to feel like a hollowed-out version of yourself.
Later that day, as I passed by my bedroom mirror and caught my legging-clad image in my peripheral vision, I paused for a moment. Yes, there’s a little extra of me to love right now, a few more curves for my stretchy companion to cover. But taking into account everything that had been going on, I think I did pretty good. I made it through some hard days and weeks, but I was on the other side and moving forward.
Friend, let me ask you this: Is it your pants that need a little more “give” these days or is it the expectations you hold for yourself? Or maybe both. Here’s my advice: Find a good pair of leggings (or five), enjoy the elastic waistband and the caressing hug of the fabric, and let it remind you that you are flexible, adaptable, and moving forward, too. One day at a time.
I guess leggings aren’t a lie after all. More like a textile-truth woven with grace. Now, I need to go find a recipe for scones….