*In case you’re English: I mean trousers. Not underpants.
Today was Volunteer Gig Day, during which I meander on over to a my favourite office downtown and tap away at a keyboard for a couple of hours while talking the ears off of people about my pets, eating their cookies, and drinking their coffee.
(It’s a good gig. They let me bring my dog in sometimes. And did I mention the cookies?)
Anyway, while I was there I had a fascinating conversation with one of my new favourite people. It seems she had this friend, once – Well. I’m sure she’s had a few over the years – and this friend was a larger woman, who had a special pair of pants. Amongst a closet of slacks, this woman had one pair that I shall call her Big Girl Pants.
These pants were for days when she was feeling fat, or had put on a few pounds, etc. She would put on the Big Girl Pants and inevitably collect a handful of compliments throughout the day. “You’re looking fabulous!” and the like. (I imagine. Look, at this point, I’m really extrapolating. It’s my blog. I don’t care.)
Over the years, the woman put on a few more pounds, but it didn’t matter. She would just buy a new pair of Big Girl Pants, go out and reap the rewards.
Now, before anyone starts writing the pissy little letters about how obesity causes heart attacks and diabetes and earthquakes, let’s assume we all know that Being Unhealthy Is Bad. (Do you like my cheap trick of lending gravitas to things by capitalizing them? Me too.)
(Damn, am I the king of digressions or what?)
Anyway, my point is: Being Unhealthy Is Bad. Right? Good. And now, we move on.
The Big Girl Pants are brilliant. As a metaphor, man. Wait, come back! I have a point. (If the point is obvious to you, skip the next paragraph and stick a gold star to your forehead.)
Everyone has something – a conversation they have with themselves, a great song they listen to, a particular shade of (ugh) lipstick, the perfect drink, or a great pair of shoes. I suppose a really lousy day could call for all of the above. A series of really bad days calls for magic pills, but that’s another conversation altogether.The Big Girl Pants are that thing. That thing that picks us up when we’re down, makes us feel better, and can sometimes turn a whole day around.
On an (I promise) related note: a while back I was asked to think about the things I do – hobbies and the like – that make me happy. Things I do just for me that have no outside attachments. I. Had. Nothing. Not a damn thing. I mean really, who has time? (I do.) Do any of you have these magical hobbies that you enjoy just for yourselves? What are they? I imagine they’re art. Or, wait, knitting. I hear that can be soothing, though personally it makes me want to do horrible things with the needles.
So I’m cultivating things. New hobbies. What do I love? Apparently I can’t just steal things from my friends and pretend that I love them. (Look, I want to love gardening, I do. But it’s so much work. And I don’t like growing things I can’t eat, which means I can’t use any industrial strength slug killers or – right. Digressions.) I’m working on it. No suggestions, please – one of those things, you know?
To tie it in: I think having the things that make us happy makes a big difference in day-to-day life. Maybe it doesn’t have to be a hobby; maybe it’s a five-minute dance party in the kitchen by yourself. So my first question is: What are the day-to-day things that you do just for yourself?
And if all that fails, we bust out the Big Girl Pants.
My Big Girl Pants fall somewhere between a really, really great song played really, really loudly in the car, and my brown leather boots. They just make me happy. They make clopping sounds when I walk, and that makes me feel like I have somewhere to go, and that’s reassuring to some sad part of me. (Sorry, sad part. Didn’t mean it.) My second question, in case you didn’t see this coming a mile away, is: What about you? What are your Big Girl Pants?
I’ll get back to some more depression-related stuff soon. I just took a week off the internet as part of a writing challenge, and now I’m back with a bunch of ideas. This one came up today, though, and needed to be written (before it was forgotten!) so thanks for bearing with me.