When The Dress Doesn't Fit

It’s perfect. It is PERFECT. Just have to find my size…

I am bursting with excitement and grinning from ear to ear as I sift through the rack of dresses, searching for my size. I am always searching for my size, the right size. YES! I hold the dress up and look at the tag. I tried this exact same dress on two months ago and it’s finally on sale. It fit beautifully, hugging all the right places and graciously flowing over the wrong ones.With the black high heeled pumps and that silver necklace…I am mentally styling a dress I haven’t even purchased yet. I need to see it on again, just to know if I need to buy new shoes also.

I get pleased looks from sales people as I make my way to the fitting rooms in the back of the store. By the time I get there I can barely contain myself. It takes almost no time for me to strip out of my winter layers and step into the gorgeous dress hanging on the wall in front of me. I feel its silky texture, and run my fingers over the beaded embellishment near the sweetheart neckline.

I’m smiling and looking into the mirror, trying to zip up the dress, when suddenly….it just stops. The zipper stops. It must be stuck. I wiggle it, move it around, and finally turn to look at it in the floor length mirror. It’s not a piece of thread stuck in the zipper that’s stopping it from going up, it’s my sides.

My love handles.

The fabric around my hips is pulled tight to the point of tearing. My ample curves leave absolutely nothing to the imagination. My bust is spilling over and stretching the seams of the pretty top. The dress doesn’t fit.

I quickly undo the little zipping I had managed and look at the tag. I was this size two months ago. I’ve gained more weight? I think, as I look at myself with fresh eyes. I’m staring at the five feet, two inch tall body of a college senior who has succumbed to many late night, junk food-filled study sessions. It is as if I am seeing my scantily clad body for the first time. My dimpled thighs and full hips, my round tummy and stretch marked waist. Every imperfection is magnified in my tear filled eyes. My head begins to pound and my heart begins to race. I drop the too small dress to the floor and stare at my body with complete disgust. The tears are falling hot and heavy now, pulsing down my humiliated face in waves of defeat and anguish.

“Do you need help zipping up?” the sales lady asks from behind the closed door. “Um…no thank you! It didn’t look right…” I stutter as I reluctantly pull on my gigantic jeans and wipe away the tears from my heated cheeks.

I emerge from the dressing room and hastily hang the stupid dress on the rack. I shuffle out of the store just quick enough to avoid the nice sales assistant, and pull my hood up just in time to hide the fresh tears that are spilling down my face. I am devastated.

We’ve all had these moments, times when our bodies seem like the enemy. Times when all we want to do is crawl under a blanket and forget we even tried the dress on in the first place. Maybe it was your jeans from last summer that won’t button, or that one shirt you absolutely LOVE that’s squeezing your arms a little too much.

We’ve all felt the disappointment and the shame, the self-loathing and pain that comes with momentarily hating your body. It’s in those moments we wish we were someone else, someone with more self-control and better genes. Someone who ran instead of ate ice cream, and chose a banana over a brownie.

  • It’s in those moments that we forget how beautiful we are, and how precious, how loved and cherished our souls and bodies are. It’s in these moments that we forget we were created perfectly, intentionally, with purpose and passion, and that no amount of weight gained will ever change that.

It’s in those moments that we have to take a good, long, hard look inside ourselves and remember that we all have flaws. We are all imperfectly perfect, trying to make the very best of what we’ve been given, and learning to love the parts of us we’d rather hide.

It’s in those moments that you must remember that within you is a seed of greatness that needs to be watered and carefully cared for.

It needs you to whisper sweet words of encouragement and sincerity, and water it with love and kindness when society is polluting your soil with lies and judgment. That seed needs positivity, your positivity, to beat down on the earth above like sunlight, and draw its soft core out into the open. Your inner light that shines will help that seed to grow into something rare, something beautiful and pure that only exists inside of you. You will begin to bloom and produce fruit of love that will draw others to you, and bare leaves that blow those sweet words of life toward the seeds buried deep within the pain of self-hatred in others. Your roots will sink deep into your soul, and become the truth that holds you firm when storms of self-consciousness beat at your back and attempt to overturn you.

So in those moments - when the dress doesn’t fit, when he doesn’t love you back, when you get an F on that test, when you don’t know which way is up, when you cannot remember what makes you unique, and special, and beautiful- remember that you are loved.

You are loved unconditionally, incessantly and perfectly.

And remember that you are beautiful, even if the dress doesn’t show it. 

Written and loved on by Daniah Miller