After reading Fairy's post on her adventures with project 333 (living with 33 pieces of clothing for three months), I started thinking about whether this project would work for me.
For a long time I've been the kind of person who I would rather own three pairs of pants from Brooks Brothers (bought on clearance with a discount gift card, of course!) than 15 pairs of cheaper pants. So this should be easy, right? Yet I've still managed to be someone who does own 15 pairs of pants.
How? One word: Bulimarexia. Since 2001 I have alternately binged and starved myself. Fortunately, I haven't purged in the more typical sense of the word. Since 2007 when I last made a batch purchase of clothes I have been 118 pounds at my lowest and 141 at my heaviest. I own everything from a size 4 to a 10. After I got married in 2010 I gained the last 10 pounds. I'm now a very consistent size 10. I have also not had any bingeing or restricting incidents in the last 35 days. My ED is dormant, for the moment.
I've been in treatment for the ED for two years now. I can spout phrases like
There will never be a 'thin enough' for me, I have to start accepting my body size now.
No one who matters to me is judging me by the size of my pants.
Holding onto my past (pants) is keeping me from moving forward.
I was artificially keeping my weight down by restricting my food. This is my body's true weight, the one that God has given me. He loves me just the way I am and because of that I can be respectful of my natural size.
It doesn't mean I've come to believe these statements are true.
Right now 80% of my closet doesn't fit. I have two choices:
1.I can keep dieting and trying to be a size 4 again. This will probably kick-start my eating disorder. But I won't feel bad about getting rid of $1000 worth of clothes.
2. I can get rid of all of my old clothes, knowing that I will not fit into them again. This will probably help me start to walk down the path of accepting my current body size. But gah, I spent a ton of money on those clothes!
The desire to give away all of the clothes that don't fit is admitting that I'll never be a size 4 again. Two weekends ago I actually cried myself to sleep about this. But in fact, giving away all of the clothes that don't fit is actually probably just a sign that I am finally taking the first steps on the path to accepting the body I'm in.
I like the idea of Project 333 because it will force me to empty out my closet and fill it with the things that actually fit and look good on me. I'm not emotionally ready to dive in just yet. Besides, there's no Brooks Brothers clearance for another few months, LOL! But in the meantime I can start to clear out my closet as much as I can bear to part with. Today I took a first pass through my closet. It's a substantial enough pile so I'll post the reckoning for it in a day or two.
Have any of you done project 333 and had weight, clothes size, or body image issues at the same time? What are your thoughts?