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Black, Pandemic Sweatpants

February 7, 2022

I got a call from a lady yesterday looking for some organizing help. 

“My house is a mess!” She said, “and there are piles of clothes everywhere.”

She explained to me how she loves her clothes and they fit. 

“But, I mean really. Where am I going?”

Another article made the rounds a few weeks ago about the post-pandemic closet purge. It seems a lot of people are wondering if we’ll ever wear our real clothes again. Dress codes have relaxed so much. My children are actually allowed to wear pajama bottoms to school as part of their uniform! What?! 

Pandemic Style

I had a different, but related thought about my own clothes as the woman was talking to me on the phone. I looked down at my outfit – two comfy layers of shirts and my trusty, black, pandemic sweatpants – and thought, I’ve got to get rid of these sweatpants! 

They are so ugly. I got them in 2020 because at that time I only had one pair of sweatpants. (I’m an organizer, remember.) and if a pandemic calls for anything, it calls for more comfy pants. 

My other sweatpants are gray and well-made. They are as flattering as possible and I love them very much. But they were expensive and I didn’t want to “waste them” by wearing them during the lockdown where literally no one would ever see me. So I bought a cheap, black pair from Target and I have worn them many, many times in the past 2 pandemic years. They don’t fit me very well, they aren’t stylish, and I feel like a potato when I wear them. 

So why do I still wear them? 


It’s a slippery slope I guess. I put them on for bed because “who cares?” then I wake up and do some yoga and they are still on my legs. Then I go for a walk. But while on the walk I grab some orange juice from the corner store. Okay. Now I am officially in public wearing the world’s least flattering sweatpants!

Thank goodness this photo of me in the pants was taken from a distance!

They are a bulky, fuzzy metaphor for the rest of my appearance. Let’s face it. If I’m wearing these bad boys, I haven’t brushed my hair or rinsed the sleepy out of my eyes. 

What am I doing with my life?! I am a successful business owner and the mother of teenagers who generally prefer it when I look presentable, or at least not like I just rolled out of bed. 

Looking Good For Myself? For My Partner?

Sure, I’m middle aged and therefore largely invisible to most people. But I’m not invisible to other middle aged ladies, who I want to be friends with; who might actually hire me! Nor am I invisible to my husband who thinks I’m great and would never tell me to “get dressed already!” But he does appreciate a little effort. 

I would like to take a little more initiative in my grooming habits (ahem) to hopefully improve my general opinion of myself every day. An easy first step will be to donate these pants. I just need to get them out of my house. The same goes for the pajamas I wear with two little holes in the front. Just throw them away already! 

Slugging through the end of this pandemic is not exactly giving me celebratory vibes. But I can help my attitude a little by NOT DRESSING LIKE A GREMLIN. 

And if I find myself in need of a second pair of sweatpants, I will buy myself another pair of the good ones. Because, I’m worth it! 

What are you wearing right now? How is it making you feel? 

Do you ever think about your spouse when you’re getting dressed? Like, “What would he think of this outfit?” Tan France (from “Queer Eye”: fashion) makes a good point about putting in some effort to look nice for your partner. After all these years, it’s easy to forget that aspect of my appearance – the part where my husband has eyes and an opinion about how I look. And if I’m doing nice things for him, he is more likely to do nice things for me – like putting his things away. Sounds great!

I leave you with this verse of encouragement which I just made up: 

May we all feel comfortable dressing however we want.

May we only own clothing which makes us feel good. 

And may all the clothes in our closet be loved and get worn.

Yes, yes!

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