Yesterday, I pulled on a pair of size 11 junior’s jeans that fit me like a glove. I topped it with a long, lean size small/tall tank and and then a large cardigan. Over it all, I tossed on my camel hair coat as I dashed out the door– a coat that is a size 4. This morning, my jeans are a six and fit just as well as the ones I wore yesterday. My top is “junior sizing” and, though it’s an XL, fits just right and looks cute. And, while the boots pulled over my skinny jeans are a size 7, I had to ask my husband to return the cute red flats he bought me for Christmas: they’re a size 8 and they’re too small.
Why do I write all of this? Because I can remember, clear as day, being a 5’5″ tall eighth grader and wearing a size 4 in ladies’ clothing. I went to try on some pants at the Limited (because I was cool like that) and– gasp!– I needed a 6.
I hadn’t grown. My 4′s still fit me fine. But, in all my thirteen year old drama, I was devastated. I refused to buy those navy pants. I was horrified. What? I went UP a size?
Now, I could write a whole post about why “size doesn’t matter” and “skinny shouldn’t be the goal” and all that. But that’s not what I want to talk about today. Today, I simply want to remind all girls and women– especially the preteen variety– that SIZE NUMBER MEANS NOTHING.
My pants today are 5 sizes down from yesterday?? That’s ridiculous. My shirt size ranges from small to extra large? It makes no sense. And, really? A size 4 coat? It makes me giggle every time I wear it because, really, I KNOW I’m not a “size 4.”
Ladies’ clothing is crazy. There are so many things that factor in to how sizes run. Sometimes? It’s just the way it’s cut. My waist is small and my thighs are not, so, depending on the pants, I might need different sizes. Other times? It’s the price. Hate to say it, but it tends to be true: the more you’re willing to spend on your clothing, the smaller a size you can be. That camel hair coat of mine? It’s from a pricey store, not surprisingly. And then, of course, there’s the whole “juniors vs. misses” piece. If I’m wearing an article of clothing designed to fit a fourteen-year-old girl, I have to anticipate that it will be sized differently from the “grown-up” department. I consistently wear a S/M in misses clothing, but need a L/XL in juniors. But, since juniors tees tend to have that super-long cut I love, I find myself shopping there sometimes.
I don’t know what to tell you about the shoes. I just can’t seem to find flats that fit my feet. Maybe I need a size 9. Who knows?
But I can tell you this– I’m done wasting any time at all worrying about what a label says. Because that number inside your waistband? It doesn’t mean a thing.