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  • Writer's pictureElana

Cleaning Out the Closet

I undertook a big project last week. Determined not to feel like I’m going to be perpetually post-partum, living out of a small corner of loose, baggy clothing in my closet, I did some spring cleaning and tried on every item of clothing I own.

Between being pregnant and then post-partum, I realized haven’t worn most of my clothes for almost 2 years! After that 12 month mark passed, I started to feel like maybe this is how my body just is and I should stop waiting for it to go back to how it was before. After all, I’m doing yoga almost daily and going for walks every afternoon. I’m back to my target weight, but that darn tummy is just a bit squishier than I would like, and those hips and ribs that expanded to make room for little Ari have never gone back to where they once were. As time passed, I would gradually get the courage to try on a shirt here or a pair of pants there and would either be excited each time that I could expand my narrow wardrobe, or disappointed that I wasn’t close to buttoning up those jeans.

Last year for mother’s day (slash a “push present”) Navin told me to go buy myself new clothes that I could feel good in. And I did buy a few shirts and some leggings, but my body was constantly changing so I kept holding off on doing any “real” shopping. This year when mother’s day came around, I realized that I hadn’t redeemed my gift, and I was determined to learn to accept the way I am now and move forward.

With Navin to give me thumbs up or down, and a full length mirror by my side, I tried on each and every item I own. From my closet to my drawers, every single piece of clothing came out and was evaluated for fit, style and condition. I was surprised by some of the pieces that did fit well, and disappointed by a few items that had no hope.

And it felt AMAZING to toss the stuff that didn’t fit aside. It felt so liberating to be starting fresh and know that every thing I am keeping is worth wearing. I expanded my daily wardrobe a lot and cleaned out a ton of clothes, making room for new items and a more confident me.

After I sorted through all of the clothes, I got excited about the idea of selling them to a second-hand store and using the proceeds toward my new clothing fund. Unfortunately, the store I took the 3 full garbage bags to told me my clothes were “too mature” for their customer (ouch!). So I donated them after all. Most of my clothes went to a refugee family from the Congo that our neighbourhood has sponsored, and a select few formal dresses are going to a program called “The Princess Project” Hopefully someone in need will get good use and a confidence boost from receiving these clothes like I am from getting rid of them.

It was a great exercise in letting go of my past self and making room for a new me.

Here’s to new beginnings, fresh starts, and letting go of the stuff that doesn’t fit anymore!

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