On Mom Pants and Mental Health

I have this pair of work pants that I hate. I have a short waist and the pants have a long-ish rise, so they sit too high on my waist. They are, for lack of a better description, stereotypical mom pants (no offense to the moms out there, but you know the kind of pants I’m talking about). And the fact that I still have to wear sneakers to work due to my plantar fasciitis doesn’t help me feel especially fashionable right now.

Mom pants front

No bueno

So why do I keep wearing them week after week? Because I only have TWO other pairs of work pants and they’re both black.

Mom pants side


And why do I only have two other pairs of work pants? It’s a combination of issues that mostly revolve around the fact that I hate shopping, I’m frugal, I’m incredibly picky, and most of my wardrobe has become too big for me in the past year thanks to losing weight. I’ve already lost so much clothes the past year due to my decrease in weight that I can’t stand to get rid of a pair that fits perfectly well.

My reaction to shopping and spending money I don't have to.

My reaction to shopping and spending money I don’t have to.

So why am I telling you this? Because it’s something that definitely affects my mental health on days I wear the pants. Yes, I completely understand that this is a “First World Problem.” I should be grateful that I have more than one pair of pants to wear. I also understand how silly it is that a pair of pants can mess with my head, but when you add the bad pants to dry skin patches on my face (thank you, Polar Vortex!), staticy hair, and sneakers, I don’t exactly feel like I have my bleep together and that in turn makes me feel like a hot mess. I hate feeling like a hot mess.

Official Hot Mess (OHM)

Not this kind of Hot Mess

But you know what I decided this weekend? In this situation, the money saving isn’t worth it. Feeling like I look like crap isn’t worth it. Life is too short to feel bad about yourself. When I feel good about how I present myself, I feel like I can conquer anything. So, now that the pants are freshly washed, they are going in the donation pile. I’ll survive on my two pair of pants, a few pairs of skirts, and some dresses for the next week or so until I find myself a few good pairs of pants.

In weekend news, WHH and I had a little adventure on Friday afternoon. We went to Massachusetts General Hospital (MGH) to get custom orthotics made for our wonky feet. Our physical therapist highly recommended the Sports Medicine Physical Therapy department at MGH. We had a chuckle when we walked into the exam room and saw this:

Disco ball at MGH

And the disco ball is for…?

It must have been left over from a Stanley Cup celebration because the person who consulted with us and made the molds, the clinical director of the program, also just happens to be, oh, I don’t know, the Boston Bruins’ Physical Therapist!

Boston Bruins Stanley Cup 2013

C/o Michael Miller/Wikimedia Commons

He was incredibly knowledgeable about what was going on with our feet and also very personable. When he started examining WHH after making my molds, he laughed out loud when he realized that we have the SAME EXACT problem: we both pronate on our left foot only. The couple that have the same left foot stay together? For me, the problem showed up as glute issues and plantar fasciitis. For my husband, it’s been more of a tibial tendonitis/stress fracture.

Once we were done, we headed over to the Museum of Science to catch an Imax movie at the Mugar Omni Theater. I loved going there as a kid and still love visiting. My most memorable time was when I got to sleep over the museum with my Girl Scout troop. It  was so cool to be there after hours and to have the run of the place!

We got there a little early for our show, so we had a quick snack in the cafe, which had a lovely view of the sunset over the Charles.

Museum of Science Boston January 2013

Then we headed over to the theater entrance. The film room in encased in glass so you can watch the film reels in process.

Mugar Omni Theater film room January 2013

Our seat-choosing tactic: get the ones in front of a speaker booth (at least, I think that’s what it was), so we don’t have any kids kicking our seats.

Omni theater January 2013

Same feet, similar glasses.

After the movie, we wandered over to P.F. Chang’s for dinner. I had heard they had an extensive gluten-free menu, so I jumped at the chance to have Asian food that was more interesting than plain steamed vegetables and chicken. Though the egg drop soup was good and service was spectacular, we were both a bit underwhelmed with the quality. I think we’ve gotten to the point that we’d rather visit a local, non-chain restaurant that has great food less frequently than visit chain restaurants more frequently.

Questions: Does what you’re wearing affect how you feel about yourself? Have you gotten rid of something perfectly fine because it just wasn’t working for you? Are you a nerd for science museums? Do you prefer chain restaurants or non-chains?

Woman in blue image courtesy of stockimages/FreeDigitalPhotos.net, Official Hot Mess image © Glenn Francis, http://www.PacificProDigital.com

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9 thoughts on “On Mom Pants and Mental Health

  1. Before we moved I cleaned out my closets in a serious way. I finally got rid of a bunch of stuff the was just unflattering because I agree, they can kind of make you a less awesome person while wearing. I hung on to them for so long because I felt really guilty about getting rid of perfectly good clothes…so I hear you on that one! But it was also a relief to simplify, and I think if you can stock your wardrobe with all stuff that you really wear and that actually makes you feel good, you end up being better off!

  2. What I wear to work totally affects my mood. I have started wearing mostly dresses because I hardly can find pants that fit around the waist. If I feel constricted I feel awful. So dresses do the trick. Once I find a brand that works for me I stick with it because I hate shopping too!

    • I do enjoy wearing dresses and skirts. Everyone always comments how “dressed up” I look when I do, but the truth is it’s usually easier and more comfortable than pants! What are some of your favorite brands?

  3. I’m so frugal so it is very hard for me to get rid of clothes before they’re in the completely falling apart stage but I’ve realized lately I either never wear ill fitting clothes or I do and I feel self conscious. So this year I’ve been immediately putting things in a donate pile if I put them on and they’re a bit too “something”–short, tight, or just not flattering. So far I have three things, but this is a process! 🙂 And I’ve already been trying not to buy new things unless I truly love how I look in them. Like isn’t good enough because I end up not liking those things after a few washes.

    • I agree! The other option is to bring them to a tailor to see if they can tweak the clothes. Less expensive than buying new clothes. But if you don’t never really liked it in the first place, it’s hard to fix that. 🙂

  4. […] parents knew how desperate I was for new clothes, so they hooked me up with a great birthday gift and went shopping for me. […]

  5. […] I feel, which is healthy and strong! Plus, since I gained mostly muscle, my clothes still fits (you know how much I hate […]

  6. […] money’s worth of clothes do you think is here? Now you know why I’ve had to resort to mom pants in the past–I had no clothes that […]

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