January 29, 2011

Clothes purge

I want the old Ryan back.  I miss her.  Really, really miss her. 

The girl that used to be thin, long legged, brunette and could eat anything.  This 34-year old Ryan is fine, but I miss who I was years ago.  I miss being 24 and eating cheese fries and throwing back a few frozen ritas and being fine with it.  At 24, counting calories and reading ingredient labels was about as foreign as learning to speak Farsi. 

My closet officially misses the old Ryan too; the clothes that were constantly being worn and hung or thrown on the top shelf, the hangers holding all of my old suits, blouses, slacks, the weekend "going out for a night on the town" clothes that were so fun and carefree to wear miss being in my closet.   I used to be a clothes horse.  Clothes were extremely important to me.  I aged. Life got in my way.   So did my body.

I got home today and felt gross.  

I felt fat.  

I felt blah. 

I felt shameful.  

I'd let myself down.  

I was shopping last night with a friend, and I caught a glance at myself in a mirror in a department store.  I gasped.  The girl I saw in the mirror is not the same girl I thought I walked out of the house looking like.  My bathroom mirror at home is lying to me.  And my clothes, were they lying to me as well?

In December just weeks before Christmas, my Mom and I went shopping together.  My Ma turned around and was frank with me.

 "Ryan, you need to invest more in your clothes and find things that aren't so cheap looking."

"But,  Mom I work from home and have for the last 3 years.  I don't need the suits and the business apparel I once did.  Not to mention I'm in advertising and no one dresses up in this business any more."

"I think you'll feel better about yourself if you invested in some more expensive clothes."

Here's the dirty little secret.  It's not about working from home.  It's about not wanting to invest in nice clothes that will last more than 4 washes because you can't stand they way they look on you to begin with. 

Damn my Mother for being dead on. I do need better clothes.  Better clothes will make me feel more confident.  I'll stand a little straighter.  I'll smile a little longer.  That twinkle in my eye will appear more often.  I won't be sucking things in as much because I'll buy clothes that won't cut off my circulation.

My internal sage and dilemma torments me.  Why invest in clothes when I don't want to be the size I am?  I've a good answer, though.  It's called Project Ryan.  It's called stop blaming the medication I've been taking for the last 11 years that causes weight gain (but, it really, really does). 

This isn't a project to lose weight (well, fine it really is about that), but rather its a project to help me feel good about investing in new clothes.  Guilt free shopping.  A new image.  A new (or maybe the old) me.  A better Ryan.  Project Ryan.  That rolls off the tongue quite nice, eh?

And while my Mom's words were hard to swallow, they've marinated in my mind for over a month now.  The bitter sweetness of this all?   I'm old enough to be recognize that mom's really do know more.

So, I initiated Project Ryan this evening.  To start it off, I purged half (and yes, I mean half) of my closet.  

Clothes I don't want to ever wear again.  

Clothes that need to find new homes.  

Clothes that won't remind me of the current Ryan. 

5 bags full. 


  1. That is seriously impressive and I TOTALLY feel you on glimpsing a mirror image and being like WTF?! Summer and I started our health agenda this past Tuesday, so I'm finishing day 5 of totally healthy eating (literally cottage cheese, berries, greek yogurt, veggies, hummus, etc.) and attempting to exercise more. I like exercising, but I have two jobs, so some days I literally do not have time (and I'm not about to go to the gym at 10 pm when I have to work yet again the next morning).

    I've been suuuuuper conscious about what I eat, and I've been doing the 30 Day Shred (Jillian Michaels is terribly annoying, but it's a good workout). I hate looking at pictures of myself even just 5 years ago and thinking "I want that body back!!!" So here it goes.

  2. Good for you!! I've been feeling the exam same way lately. I'm turning 34 in a couple of months and have been depressed about all the extra weight I've put on over the last year or two. When I was young...I was always skinny and never gave it a second thought! Now...I would give anything to look like that again. I feel you. But I decided I wouldn't buy any new clothes until I've lost half my goal weight at least. Gives me incentive.

  3. Way to go Ryan! What an awesome feeling that purge was, huh? Me and the hubs went through this and we started P90X in September. I didn't miss a workout the full 90 days. And I did the diet that went with it. We made the commitment and got up at 5 am. We still do it too but 5 days instead of 6. It seriously was one of the best decisions I have ever made. I felt fat. Now I am SO conscious of what I am eating even though I do still splurge a little. Like Friday was a total calorie fail for me. And I knew it each time I took another bite of those effing cinnamon rolls yet I kept eating them. I feel much better about myself but I still have to work at the food end. I didn't even have AJ to blame since he was adopted! Commit yourself to it and blog about it to hold yourself accountable. We'll keep on you! :)

  4. I LOVE this project and would love to support you in any way I can...maybe by joining you in the purge. I have a lot of clothes that need to find new homes...not because they don't fit, but because they don't fit "me."

    The best thing about you, Ry, is and always has been your personality. Maybe when you are feeling that mojo once again, it won't matter what you're wearing!!! You are beautiful and I hope the outside starts to feel like it's matching the inside soon. ; )


  5. Isn't it interesting how we tend to hold on to clothes that remind us of a time in our lives when we were looking good. Even if I were the same size I wouldn't wear these things..yet I can't quite let go. Here's to you for taking that 1st step and inspiring me to do the same!

  6. You've inspired me to go through my closet and get rid of some stuff. There are things in there that I haven't worn for YEARS.