and the countdown begins

I started over today.  With my diet that is.  Now that the whole chopsticks thing has been proven a failure, and my lack of willpower to stay away from diet Coke and candy is legendary, I have made up my mind that a radical change is needed.  My first indication came when I decided to wear a skirt to work today.  I don’t know what made me choose that particular article of clothing.  It had been hanging in my closet since the last time I’d worn it back in the fall and I had no reason to think it wouldn’t fit me as well as it had that last time, so I pulled it off the hanger and lay it across my bed so I could wriggle into a pair of tights.

It was a cold day or I would have forgone the tights.  In retrospect, I should have just worn pants, but then I may not have known how serious my dilemma had become.

I opened the new package of black tights and shook them out to clear the wrinkles.  I slipped one foot in and then the other and began the awkward dance known to all women who wear panty hose on a regular basis. 

I struggled to tug the unyielding hose up over my knees, but the waistband was way too tight. As I fought against the stretch to yank them up my legs, my circulation was cut off each time I paused to get a better grip. I suppose I should have given up and changed, but I was committed to the decision, and so I forged on. 

Once I managed to secure the tights into position, they didn’t feel so constricting.  In fact, with the exception of the waistband, they were actually comfortable, and I rationalized to myself that the waist would stretch out as the day wore on.  It would have to, right?


After a week of mulling over the ramifications of the groundhog seeing his shadow and dooming us to six more weeks of winter, it occurred to me that if winter had six weeks left, that meant that spring was only six weeks away.  Five at this point.  And with only five weeks to shed my winter coat, I would need to get with the program without delay.  Now, by winter coat, I am not referring to the hair on my legs, which is easily shaved away.  Instead, I am referring to the undercoat that was built up with Christmas cookies, sweets, and other assorted winter indulgences that are hidden beneath the thick clothes of cold weather.  Today was to be my first official day of healthy eating.  I had oatmeal for breakfast and with each bite, the sensation that a rope had been tightened around my waist increased, until the noose was cinched ever tighter. 

I tugged on the waistband throughout the morning, determined to stretch it out, and release the strangle hold on my midsection.  The more I pulled, the more it snapped back, and if possible it was getting even tighter. 

By lunch time , even after having nothing more than a salad and ice water, the discomfort was almost unbearable.   Because at this point, on top of everything else, I had to pee.  I was afraid if I got the tights off, I would never be able to get them back on.  But at this point it was only one-thirty, and I didn’t think I could hold it until four-thirty.   

I don’t know who said, “Necessity is the mother of invention,” but those tights were a mother, and I needed to come up with some sort of invention to alleviate my suffering. 


I pulled out the large pair of scissors in my drawer, and without leaving my office, proceeded to snip the waistband at the top just enough to give it some slack.  It wasn’t enough, but it would have to do.  I was ready to brave the restroom, and the possibility of being stranded without my tights.

I don’t know how I managed to have so many problems in restrooms lately.  I have officially given up soft drinks, and still I couldn’t wait until I was in my own home to use the bathroom.  Luckily for me, the only complication today was due to the fact that I was still operating with a 75% inside out rate—which is to say that I am somehow putting my underwear on inside out 75% of the time.  I don’t even know how that is possible, especially now that I am aware of the situation.  It only seems logical that now that I know, I would be more careful.  Yet no amount of checking, or looking, or analyzing seems to help.  Once I put my foot in, they somehow flip.   I’ve just learned to let it go and move on.  As for the tights…the sliced waistband operated as expected, and I was able to wriggle back in and finish my day. 

The first thing I did when I got home was to shed the torture device and toss them straight into the trash.  I have never experience as much euphoria upon removing an article of clothing in my life.  

I definitely think tomorrow will be a loose trousers kind of day.  I would wear sweatpants if I could get away with it.  But, I may have to push my diet start date back just one more day.  We are having an “I hate Valentine’s Day” potluck at work. (Not my idea, but who argues when the entire group wants to bring food?) 

Until the next time…I’ll be eating carrots dipped in chocolate!


Copyright © 2000-2018, Erica Lucke Dean. All rights reserved. Any retranscription or reproduction is prohibited and illegal.
Posted on February 12, 2010 .