PSYCHOLOGISTS are forever trying to explore the depths of human emotion. They want to know our deepest wishes, hopes and fears. Sometimes, though, our wishes are neither deep nor complicated, but simple longings to return to an earlier state. In the case of women, there are four words that sum up a common wish: Someday this will fit.This distinctly female mantra isn’t entirely foolish, just largely so. We assume, first off, that the clothes we store will somehow wait for us; that when we return, often years later, the low-slung hips or flared legs of our slacks won’t look archaic or quaint. We assume the rights to these clothes, as if to earlier versions of ourselves. Then we engage in a sort of fashion math: Reach a certain weight and, ipso facto, certain clothes will fit. They did, therefore, they will. Never mind that our equation permits none of the variables that reality has been known to impose. Among the surprises: Gaining or losing weight is never the same thing twice. We may have notions about how the weight will sit and where it should go. One quickly learns, however, that the body, too, has a plan, which may, or may not, coincide with our own. Nor does a precedent, set years before, necessarily hold much clout. Unlike memory fabrics that revert to their original shape, bodies have a different, more canny sort of memory. They’ve put up with us all these years; in turn, they manage to keep us honest. If you’re no longer 22, chances are your body won’t pretend that you are. Through some twisted calculus, the business of clothing sizes becomes increasingly surreal with time. That little black dress in the closet, for instance, used to fit well in all the right places. A decade later, you may be the identical weight, but parts of you, and the dress, are now in different time zones. What’s wrong with this picture? Nothing, probably. It’s just that we hold certain fanciful ideas that morph into expectations. All of those neat assumptions about weight and size, which form the rationale for so many bags of stored clothes, fall apart without adjusting for age. Middle age is a great re-arranger of assets; it’s the wild card that no simple math can explain. It should come as no surprise, then, that a middle-age body has a structure and form distinct from that of its younger self. If that means an entire history of wardrobes past will sit in bags in the closet, unworn, then so be it. “Someday this will fit” isn’t a lie, exactly; it’s just more complicated than that. Factor in a dose of realism and a sense of humor, and with luck, one learns the difference between what’s fitting and what fits. Joan Silverman is a freelance writer. AD Quality Auto 360p 720p 1080p Top articles1/5READ MORECasino Insider: Here’s a look at San Manuel’s new high limit rooms, Asian restaurant160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set!