Christmas Pants

I used to have a pair of blue corduroy pants that didn’t fit right. During the years I owned them, they went from being too tight to be fashionable to being too baggy to be fashionable. Some days during college, if I felt like I was getting overly concerned with how I looked, I would make myself wear those funny pants. Forced humility through a little self-humiliation, I guess. We humans are odd.

I’m reminded of the old saying, “so-and-so is comfortable in their own skin.” As though one’s skin is like a shirt or a pair of pants that you squeeze into and adjust and fidget with until you’re satisfied with the results. A skin can feel like those corduroy pants, too. Never quite the right fit for the person wearing it or the expectations of the world around it.

I got started thinking about all of this because I got a new pair of corduroy pants for Christmas, and they fit real nice. Somewhere in the last few years, I have, for the most part, become someone who wears clothes that fit okay. I’m still working on making my skin fit, but maybe the pants come first and then the skin. That’s what I’m hoping for, anyhow.

New year, new pants, new beginnings, new hope that maybe something good can grow again, that maybe we can catch our breath from the body blows of this past year and trace lines of beauty sparking out of all the pain, that pain is not merely pain but is pregnant with meaning and grace and the chance to fit a little better in our own skin and offer others the freedom to do the same.

See you out there.