I have a pair of the most amazing shorts that I bought at a vintage store when I was 21 years old. Those shorts travelled throughout Israel, Egypt, Greece, and then on to Germany. They finally landed in the traveller’s corner of London,where they resided for another six months before returning to Canada.
Can you find the shorts? They’re second from the right, first row.
Look at my LEGS!! There’s definitely something to be said for schlepping a 70 lb backpack around Israel’s uneven terrain. Oh, and also for Egypt’s water. Aah, the Tourista. Wasted on the young and firm.
Unfortunately, the shorts were shrunk. The cause? Not hot water, that’s for sure. Beer, chocolate, a distaste for exercise, babies, and a love of junk food and television ensured that those shorts were a couple of sizes smaller than my body. Sadly, my amazingly cool shorts ended up in a drawer. For a very long time. But, I kept them. You know, in case they ever un-shrunk. Luckily for them, early on they were disqualified from the closet organizing mantra ‘If you don’t wear something for one year, toss it’. My shorts survived endless closet purges that my peasant tops, tie-die dresses and clogs did not.
When my son was small, I fit into the shorts once again, probably 10 years after their first go-around. How? Blame it on the kid and his unique brain. I’m not proud of my tactics for managing a toddler who turned out to have ADHD, but I used to put him in the gym daycare so that I could have
two hours without him workout in peace. Consequently, I was in pretty good shape. Stairclimbing, weight lifting and body pump classes worked just as well at the back packing, although they weren’t nearly as much fun. (Did you know they don’t serve cocktails at the gym?)
After a while, I got bored of my workouts, renewed my love for movie popcorn, and sadly had to place the shorts right back into their drawer. Oh, sure they sort of still fit for a while. But only when I was in the mood for a denim wedgie.
Another 10 years passed. I still didn’t throw those shorts out.
In the last year I’ve dropped about 10 lbs. Apparently the combination of losing a job, having the stomach flu twice, and hot yoga work like the trifecta of appetite control. Last weekend, I worked up the courage to try the shorts on. And, they fit. I thought I looked amazing. Those
legs shorts represent 43 years just fine.
Following the excitement of being able to easily zip up the time travelling shorts, after posting braggelicious ‘look at ME in my shorts’ pictures on Instagram, and tossing my head in derision as my daughter coveted my denim, I decided to go outside and plant a garden whilst wearing them.
And I asked my kids to take pictures of me gardening. You know, for the BLOG.
Big MISTAKE. Probably the biggest one EVER.
I learned a valuable lesson yesterday. Listen carefully. I will only say this once.
Do not look at pictures of yourself gardening in your 20-something short shorts, especially those taken from behind.
Personally, I’m happy to maintain the illusion that what I see in the mirror is a 360 reality. Most of the time I like the way I look from the front. Sometimes I like the side view (sans muffin tops). But, generally, I choose to believe that there is no view from behind. I’m just like those babies who hide their faces when they’re doing something naughty, ‘If you can’t see it, it isn’t there…’ I’m good with denial as I head into the second half of my life.
Thanks to the miracle of digital cameras, the offending pictures are gone. I’m lucky. I’m not a movie star, and nobody put my bent over, cellulite-ridden, short-shorts-clad tuches on the cover of Star Magazine. I’m lucky that there is no permanent record of my rear view that day.
However, I think it’s time that the most amazing shorts and I part ways. First, to ensure that there are no more pictures of me wearing them. But also, because it’s time to move on, to let them (and me) have new adventures. In the spirit of the Sisterhood of the Travelling Shorts, I’ve passed them on to my daughter.. After all, she’s got the legs for them.