Today I finished selling my ED clothes online. My online wardrobe seemed strange. It contained lots of different sizes. Every single piece of clothing either “fit” or felt like it had “fit” in the last five years. Each of the fabrics were woven and laced with some really important stories for me and my family. I sold the dark sweaters that maintained my temperature when I came down with the worst fresher’s flu. I sold the scarves that gave me the warmest of hugs when I felt (and often acted) like a Mr Frostie ice lolly. I sold the crop tops I wore when I felt (and often acted) like a blast furnace. I sold two birthday dresses. In my 18th birthday dress, I completely refused birthday cake. In my 21st birthday dress, I hand-picked a personalised rainbow birthday cake with hundreds and thousands of hundreds of thousands.
It was an elaborate process of second-guessing. I folded the items and thought “what if we’re not the same without them?”. Then I packaged the items and thought “what if we need them again?”. Then I posted the items and thought “what if there was a way to get them back?”. It’s right. I am not the same. That is with or without these clothes cluttering my wardrobe. I am many things now. I am a dedicated graduate and Dean’s Prize winner, a trusted colleague, an eating disorder ambassador and a new homeowner (with very little wardrobe space). Of course, I’m no more or less than I was, but I’m certainly not 'the same'. I really don’t need or want them back. All of the clothing is going to the people they are meant to fit. Because you are not meant to fit your clothes. Your clothes are meant to fit you.
My relationship was fashion used to be “shallow”: schematic and restrictive. I dreaded everything about the experience, especially getting changed in dressing rooms. But as I am learning to fall in love with the world again, I am too falling for fashion - my own fashion. With my sales I have been able to purchase clothes that truly fit my recovered body (I know I just said I have very little wardrobe space). I love my wardrobe. I proudly display my threads in an open closet. It’s full of fluorescent flowers, pretty pastels and sophisticated plaids. You could say I am indeed dressed for every occasion, and much more exciting occasions at that.
Of course, I haven’t sold the stories with them. I’m recycling their vessels so that I can make new stories. Regardless, whatever the garment, I am determined it should fit me, not I it.
Contributed by Katie