Remember when you weighed over 300 pounds and you literally felt “stuffed” into your clothes? Zippered pants and tailored shirts just weren’t your “style”, or closer to the truth, you couldn’t find any zippered pants that fit you well or shirts that didn’t peep open of pop buttons! Elastic became your closest buddy! Do you recall how self-conscience you were to not bend over for fear of busting out your seat? Or how about the way your large thighs would rub so much against the inside seam of your pants, you were glad that nobody could see that you had splitting material in between your legs?
Those are awful and painful memories of what life was like before your gastric bypass weight-loss surgery! It almost feels as if those memories are a whole lifetime behind you now, doesn’t it? And for those who have had the surgery and are still working toward their goal weight, those memories aren’t far enough away yet.
Many gastric bypass patients, as they slim down, do not know how to wear smaller-size clothing. They find the freedoms of loose-fitting garments to be refreshing, less binding, and more relaxing. They often adore this newly-found delight and are happy with the way their clothing “hangs” on them instead of wraps tightly around their body.
These same patients who wear the loose clothing often have issues with thinking they have not lost enough weight. They will say things like, “the scale shows I’ve lost weight, but when I see myself in the mirror, I still look so large.”
For those patients who are feeling that way, I want to make a suggestion that just might be the simplest fix; I’ve dubbed this to be my “Getting Rid of the Baggies” campaign.
And I don’t mean sandwich baggies either!
Losing weight so quickly is an adventure, to say the least. We go through a lot of size changes every few weeks. I recall when I was losing, I was going to the thrift stores every three weeks to buy more clothing to fit me until the next drop in size came. Not very expensive when they are “used” items. It was something I had to do!
Some patients have no clue that they are trapped in their baggies until someone points that out to them. This should be done in the kindest of ways, or in the manner that suits your friendship. If you truly are friends with someone who is trapped in the baggies, then you can be blunt and to the point by saying, “Get out of those baggies!” Others may require a gentler tone if you are to remain friends.
What if nobody is telling you that you’re trapped in the baggies? Does that mean you’re not?
NO. It probably means that they are too afraid to tell you at risk of hurting your feelings.
This is where I jump in… I’m going to give you some clues right now as to how to judge whether or not you are still wearing baggy clothes unnecessarily.
You know you’re trapped in the baggies when:
You’ve lost 50 pounds and you haven’t put on the next smaller clothing size. Fifty pounds is a LOT, and it SHOWS!
The shoulder seams are nearing closer to your elbows.
Your shirts or sweaters fit you like short dresses.
You can grab a huge fistful of material and still not be touching your body.
Your shirt or dresses fit you like oversized maternity wear.
Your shirts have leftover “stretch bumps” stuck in them where you don’t have bumps like that anymore.
Your feet shift back and forth inside your shoes when you walk.
Your pantyhose can be pulled up to almost your armpits.
You become tangled as you walk because your pant legs get knotted up in between your legs.
Your half slip falls right off of you and onto the floor.
Your tank tops have become slings for the…
Your sleeves flap in the wind like sails.
Your turtlenecks are now tortoise-necks that don’t’ even touch your neck.
Your rings are falling off. Put them away until you can get them resized… I’ve seen the tears of people who’ve lost their rings!
Your socks stretch above the knees.
The rump of your pants sag low and appear to be harboring pockets of air.
Getting the idea now? If you are guilty of any one of these baggie symptoms, I strongly urge you to go to your nearest store and buy a smaller size!
I can promise you, that if you get out of the baggies, you will feel so much better about yourself, you weight-loss achievements, and begin to appreciate in a deeper sense what the surgery has done for you. It’s time to stop beating yourself up with unfounded criticism.
This certainly WAS a rough lesson on you, wasn’t it? Well, at least you have a clue now and you didn’t have to get mad at a friend telling you! And if one day your friend DOES tell you that you’re trapped in the baggies, tell them “thank you” and mean it by wearing clothes that flatter you.
And for the FRIENDS who need to drop the bomb on someone trapped in the baggies…. if you’re too shy to tell them to their face, email them this article!