How many times have you gone into a clothing store and come out feeling like shit about yourself? I know I have, on numerous occasions. I got so pissed off at the way that I felt clothing brands/manufacturers kept making sizes "Alice in Wonderland" smaller, while clearly, I wasn't getting bigger.
Last summer, I went to one of my favorite stores at my local mall, and I left nearly in tears. Why didn't I fit into this size of jeans in this store? I fit into this same size in another store. What's going on here? Am I losing my mind?
After that experience, I decided that from that point forward, I would not let myself get worked up and stressed out over the sizing label on a pair of jeans—my clothing size doesn't define me. The inch measurements of my waist will not ever be relevant as to whether or not I am kind, smart, or freaking amazing at Karaoke (and I crush a good Stevie Nicks' song, by the way). My clothing size has absolutely no bearing on whether or not I add value to someone's life, or if I'm genuinely a good person.
Your clothing size should not ever define how you see yourself either. So what? You're a size 00—that doesn't mean that you're "nothing" or that you "look sickly skinny." So what? You're a size 16, or 18, or 22—that doesn't mean that you're "ugly" or "too big" or "not enough," or any of the other lies that society would have any of us believe about ourselves.
Society loves to put women in their place, and what better way to do this than to have us believe that because we wear size fill-in-the-blank jeans, that we are automatically "too small" or "too big." The problem is not with any one of us—the problem is with society and the fact that making women feel uncomfortable in their bodies have become the norm. I will never let the size of my jeans ever define how I see myself, and you shouldn't either.
As cliché and "Instagram hashtag" worthy as the old saying goes, it's actually true: Love yourself. In a culture that relies on women (and men, too), hating ourselves, it's absolutely critical for each and every one of us to accept ourselves exactly as we are.