Putting On My Big Boy Pants

I recently was able to do something that was rather exciting for me. It may not seem like a lot to most people, but it was a significant event in my life. What was this watershed moment? I walked into a Lee store in a mall, and bought a pair of jeans off the shelf.

These were normal jeans, straight off the rack. There are no elastic expansion bands in the waist, no drawstrings to help keep them up, no stretchy fabric at all. In short, they are big boy pants.

Like I said, this may not seem like a big deal to you, but this is the first time in decades that I was able to walk into a normal store in the mall, and find pants that were in a size I could wear. It wasn’t a “Big & Tall” or a “Casual Male”, or any of the other stores with clever names to avoid just advertising “Fat People Shop Here”.

True, these pants were at the far end of the range available in the store. They have a 40-inch waist. But just a few years ago, I was shopping for pants in the 54-56 inch sizes. Now, with my weight edging ever closer to the 200-pound barrier (205 this morning), I have lost 114 pounds and 16 inches off my waistline.

I repeated this miracle in another store with a pair of nice walking pants, even found a new belt off the rack, and then had to hold myself back from buying anything else for now. For one thing, we’re traveling right now, on our way first to Peru for the Inca Trail, then to Uruguay for two weeks, so space in our bags is at a premium.

More personally satisfying, is that I have every reason to believe that by the time we are ready to return from our trip, I may need to shop for pants in a size 38. And since we live in an area where I almost always wear shorts anyway, by the time I need pants again (say, to visit the US), I may even be in the amazing territory of the Land of the 36-inch Waists.

I tell you, it boggles the mind!