"Comparison is the thief of joy," wrote Theodore Roosevelt.
With just a few words, this great man has not only acknowledged that we all compare ourselves to others, but he has also given us an excellent reason to stop. To compare yourself to others will rob you of the joy that you would normally have, so stop comparing yourself! What we all try to say with a whole lot more words, he has said so succinctly, and so perfectly.
I find myself comparing almost every day. Even when I know that it's not a healthy thing to do, I find myself doing it anyway. I was in DSW the other day, looking for a pair of boots. A pair of brown boots, to be exact. If you've ever been to DSW, you know how many aisles of boots they have, and I love it.
So I do the cursory browse down the aisles, but nothing is jumping out at me. I saunter through a few more times, almost ready to give up and go home, when a beautiful, tall blonde woman walks very purposefully by me. In five seconds flat, I scan her from head to toe when BOOM. "Daddy, I want the boots she's wearing!" (I'm trying to channel my inner Veruca Salt here.) They looked so good on her. I had walked by that particular pair several times, thinking they were 'too much.' Well, not on her! Too much was just right.
I follow her to the location of the boots she is wearing, where she is sitting down. I casually walk by and said, "Oh, you've got those boots on, right?", pointing to the pair on the shelf. She told me that she loved them so much, she had to get them in black too. She quickly tries them on, they fit perfectly, of course, and she glides off to the front of the store to pay. I never thought of myself as a visual person, but I think I'm quickly becoming one. I had to have those boots.
These boots aren't just any old boot, they happen to be slightly over the knee. Not too much, but just enough. They are awesome. I sit down to try them on and I am able to slip my foot into the boot itself, but now I've gotta do some finagling to get them zipped up. These particular boots have a side zip that stops right below the cuff, so that the beautiful cuff can come up to the knee and just look fabulous. I go to zip it up, and those beautiful, magical, tall-blonde-woman boots will not zip up over my gigantic calves. Try as I might, I could not squeeze the fat down into the boot one more iota without performing do-it-yourself surgery.
So I begin doing what I usually do when I'm frustrated. I talk to myself. "Really? I mean, I must be the only woman on Earth who, in the midst of a 300-pair bootapalooza, is too fat for the only pair I like!" and "This isn't happening right now," as if this is the most devastating news I could possibly hear right now.
I sat there for a minute, letting the gravity of the situation sink in. I cannot wear these boots, because I am too fat for them. But SHE wasn't too fat for the boots. Oh, nooooo! In fact, now she has two pairs of those sacred things. Gosh, she even has good hair. And that sweater paired with the jeans was just perfect. Grrrrr, I hate her. I want to be her.
That's when I stopped myself. These calves may be too big for those particular boots, but these calves have taken me pretty far. My hair may not be as smooth and shiny as that woman's, but at least I have hair, and I'm not struggling with chemo and losing it. Who knows what else that woman struggles with that I don't? Yes, I have my problems in life, but they're mine. I don't want yours.
Do you find yourself comparing to others? Do you catch yourself and stop, or not?
Do you have a shoe fetish?
See you tomorrow!