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Judy Silk Headshot

Fat and Happy -- They Didn't Get That Expression Out of Thin Air

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I was delighted to read about the explosion of fashion designers creating lines for the plus size market. Apparently it's the latest big thing (no pun intended). The fashion industry and purveyors of taste and trend have gotten the message that there's a lot of money to be made from a public that can't wear size 2 jeans anymore.

It reminded me of the time I bought a pair of shorts that I loved. They were sort of trendy and in great colors -- brown, pink and cream plaid -- had a perfect fit and were comfortable. Everything was fine until I pulled the shorts out to wear the next day. As I went to cut the tag off, I saw that the shorts were a size 11. "WHAT?" I thought. "No way. I don't wear 11's. A year ago, I was wearing 5's and 7's. An 11?" I promptly repacked them in the bag and returned them. "I don't wear 11's."

Looking back, I think, "What was that about?" They were really comfortable shorts. Why was I so hung up on the number? The reason is explained in one three letter word. F-a-t. Wearing a size 11 meant I was fat. And in my world, in this society, that isn't okay. It isn't acceptable. It isn't ideal. No one likes it.

Over the years, I've crept up the dress size slide and tipped the scales at higher and higher numbers. I seem to have reached a plateau right now. I am not on a diet. I'm not exercising. I'm not cutting out any food group. I'm only marginally monitoring my portion size and I seem to have stayed at this point for a while. Given what a fantastic cook my husband is, I am pretty happy about that. Some small percentage of me says, "That's ok. That's great. I can live with that." Another larger percentage says, "You know you wish you were skinnier. You barely fit into your clothes."

Both are right. I do wish I was skinnier and I am pretty happy. If only my clothes weren't so uncomfortable.

I started this piece because I was thinking of ordering a new dress to wear to a friend's son's wedding. I thought it might be time to pick a style that would suit my body as it is right now as opposed to buying something that would look slenderizing but I'd have to lose 5 pounds to pull off.

So I ordered a size 11. Who knows if it will look great when it arrives? I might look fat, but at least it will fit. And I will probably feel good about it.

All that being said, when I looked at the models online for the dress, I found myself more drawn to the skinny models' clothes. It's a curse. I'm working on it.