Dear Annie: I have been overweight my entire life. Because of a diabetes scare a couple of years ago, I lost 50 pounds, primarily through running and modifying my diet. My self-esteem has greatly improved because I now have more energy to keep up with my kids and can go for longer walks with my husband and just overall have more energy for life. My doctor says that my cholesterol is down and my blood pressure is great. I have kept the weight off for over a year now, so I feel pretty confident that by taking the pounds off slowly, I will keep them off.
Annie, I have always loved fashion. Even at my heaviest, I took great pride in my wardrobe and always bought a few expensive staple pieces that I hoped to keep forever. The problem now is that none of my expensive clothes fit. It was really over a 10-year period that I built up a beautiful wardrobe. Now it feels as if I'm starting from scratch, and it is costing a fortune. I'm afraid that if I were to hold off on buying new clothes, I would use it as an excuse to gain weight, but if I went ahead and replaced my 10-year-old wardrobe overnight, my bank account wouldn't be too thrilled. In fact, my husband has complained in the past that I spend too much money on clothes, and this could cause a major rift, which I want to avoid because we really are a close family. Also, he has been supportive and helpful in my weight loss, and I want to keep the peace. Do you have any suggestions? — From a Size 12 to a 4
Dear 12 to 4: Congratulations on your weight loss and improved health! Look at the wardrobe issue in the same way you approached your weight loss — as an exciting challenge. Take a good look at your closet, going through all of your old clothes to find the very special pieces that you most want to keep. Take those pieces to a tailor and have them taken in. As for the others — the clothes you're not too attached to — you could try selling them on sites such as Poshmark and The RealReal.
Remember that Rome wasn't built in a day. Within reason, treat yourself to a few splurges every now and then as a reward for your success. Who knows? It might motivate you even more to keep the weight off. Remember that it's a lot easier for a tailor to take clothes in than to let them out.
Dear Annie: This is in response to "No More Calls for Me," who's frustrated that people she calls on the phone seem distracted and sometimes talk to other people in the room. When I wish to speak to our grown and busy sons, I usually text them first and ask whether it's a good time to talk. I am happy to say they are straight with me, so a "yes" means I get their undivided attention. And when I honor a "no," we all feel respected. — JRB in Salem, Ore.
Dear JRB: This is a wise idea. A little planning and proactive communication can go a long way toward smooth relations.
"Ask Me Anything: A Year of Advice From Dear Annie" is out now! Annie Lane's debut book — featuring favorite columns on love, friendship, family and etiquette — is available as a paperback and e-book. Visit http://www.creatorspublishing.com for more information. Send your questions for Annie Lane to [email protected]