Sunday, August 8, 2010

A year and two sizes later

Trying to convince my husband that buying panties while pregnant is not a good idea has failed the last couple of months, so I took some of the birthday cash I received and decided to surprise him. He had a final in college on Thursday, and I thought it would be perfect if he came home and could see my new undies in the Victoria’s Secret bag since he has been complaining that I’ve had the old ones too long. I overcame the voice in my head that kept saying, “Do not buy panties while pregnant, do not look at your butt while pregnant, none of this is smart.” The lesson learned from this is always listen to the voice.

Wren and I set out on my 31st birthday and had a pretty good first trip to Victoria’s Secret. I picked out undies, she put some on her head and roamed around, and we were out of there in under ten minutes. It wasn’t until she was napping that I decided to try on my new purchases. I wasn’t expecting any major surprises; I had purchased the same size I always wore. There was a surprise waiting when I put them on though: they disappeared. That’s right, my pregnant butt ate them! Now I have been trying to tell Dennis that with this pregnancy my butt has also become pregnant, but in his always supportive way he says that it’s not true and I’m just being paranoid. The panty eating butt incident is proof.

I didn’t get too upset. I mean, I knew my other ones were a little snug and you can only blame that on too many trips through the dryer for so long. So, Wren and I trudged back to Victoria’s Secret to trade them in, something you can do if you’ve tried them on over underwear and they are not “obviously worn”. Who tries to return obviously worn panties I wonder, but, I digress. This second trip was a little different. Wren tried to use a bra as a slingshot and actually got her arms tangled up in some bright orange panties. However, she was distracted and happy, her slingshot aim wasn’t great so no one got hurt, and it gave me some time to stop and really think about my butt size and what would fit over my newfound ten pounds of cellulite. I decided to go up a size. That’s right, one size. I even consulted a 17 year old, size 0 sales associate before making this decision. Her advice: “Maybe you can just buy what you think you will need after the baby comes, you know, when everything falls back into place. By the way, get the ones with the lace at the top because those will stretch while your belly is still stretching.”
And yes, this individual is still alive. I was even so full of the love of Christ that day that I didn’t bother to shatter her no body fat world by telling her that things don’t fall back into place after you have a child, they just fall. You try to catch them with underwire and big butt cheek covering panties. I just smiled and resisted the urge to tell Wren to aim the bra slingshot at her.

So, we left. Why did I not try them on at the store, you ask? We were running startlingly close to bedtime, something I don’t usually do, and locking Wren in a small room with me while I tried to analyze the amount of butt coverage this size offered just didn’t seem wise. Besides, I went up a size. That should be good, right?

Well, the birthday panty plan failed. When Dennis came home all he found was a wife who had tried on five more pairs of panties that didn’t fit(one actually cut off circulation to my thighs) and was trying desperately not to blame him for the fact that I now know EXACTLY how much bigger my butt is. He had good intentions. And really, I love my pregnancy body, I loved it the whole pregnancy with Wren. This pregnancy has been no different until now, and I finally know the difference: I never looked at myself from the waist down before when I was pregnant. I definitely was not stupid enough to look at myself in a full length mirror wearing nothing but underwear. Am I getting dumber with each pregnancy?

I still love my pregnancy body, most of it, and I don’t feel 31, whatever that is supposed to feel like. This experience showed me that I have matured, and I don’t just mean put on weight. This experience five years ago would have led to tears for most of the day. Now, Wren and I laughed, put panties on our heads and called it a day. My body makes babies and milk, so I think that makes up for my bottom being a bit on the J. Lo side right now. I don’t want to teach my daughter that panty size is a defining factor for self esteem. Plus, I did realize that I’ve been letting some things slide, important things that I need to address soon. If I am going to push a child out of my body without drugs in less than four months, I need to start getting my body ready for that. I wouldn’t sign up for a marathon without practicing my running, so I don’t think I should enter labor in the not so wonderful shape I’m in now. And that’s when I realized I’m more concerned about my health than my clothes size, more concerned about keeping my body in a healthful condition than having no cellulite. Don't get me wrong, rock hard legs like I had when I spent the better part of my day exercising would be nice, but that's not my long term goal, even after the cellulite shock. I want to teach my children to focus on health, not numbers on the scale or sizes on clothes because I think when your focus is right the rest of it just falls into place. That was my a-ha moment: after 31 years, I have finally discovered how to put on my big girl panties(literally) and be the example I want my children to see. I won’t just be saying it, I’m going to live it. And really, only 31 years to learn. I’m a pretty quick study.

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