Somebody should tell you not to go trying on any items of clothing straight after you have had a baby – especially jeans that were a little snug before you were with child. Come to think of it, that advice really ought to go inside a manual for motherhood, along with other useful kernels of knowledge like: DO NOT look at your lady parts until about 4 weeks post-birth.
Anyhow – I digress… You’ve heard the term muffin top. Well when I attempted to squeeze into my favourite pair of jeans recently, I had what can only be described as a mega muffin top. Perhaps even a wedding cake top actually, a three tiered cascade of fat pouring over my waistband, and that was the pair I managed to get over my thighs… It wasn’t pretty.
You see, I’m in that horrible in-between phase of being too small for my maternity clothes, but too big for my normal clothes. I’ve tried to shop, but lets just say it isn’t going all that well.
There was the time I realised I needed a new sports bra. I visited Myer and the lovely sales assistant unabashedly laughed in my face when I asked for a sports bra with no underwire to support, size DD or possibly E cup. ”Oh, NO NO NO love! You are definitely not a DD. You are an F, maybe a G and I can see you are bigger on one side,” she sniffed.
“Thanks,” I thought as she started collecting a bunch of industrial-looking bras for me to try. I’m now not only off the scales of most decent looking underwear, but I am VISIBLY bigger on one side. I wondered how many other complete strangers had noticed my lopsided milk cannons. Unperturbed, I snatched the tent-like boulder holders out of the assistant’s clutches and scurried to the change room to try them on. I tried the smallest one on first and (of course) it didn’t fit. I made my way depressingly through the stack until I landed on the last of the oversized braziers. I took a moment to reflect on the situation and caught a glimpse of my dimpled bottom in the very unforgiving three-way mirror. I’m not sure what angle is more horrifying, the front or the back. The back showed my floppy buttocks, housed in Bridget Jones style mega knickers left over from my pregnancy (why am I still wearing these?!?!). The front presented my F sized hooters dangling sadly towards my navel. F for fantastic? More like F for what the FUCK has happened to my once-glorious fun bags. There really wasn’t much choice but to buy the bra and try and forget about the past. I have come to accept that before a feed my bazoongas look like Pamela Anderson’s in Baywatch, and after a feed they look like some African lady’s in a documentary.
There was also the embarrassing moment where I entered a major chain store Cotton On to try and find some shorts. Basic summer shorts shouldn’t be that hard to find, and I didn’t realise I was being hilarious when I asked if there were any shorts in the shop that were not hot pants and would cover at least one of my butt cheeks. “OH!” scoffed the too-cool-for-school 22 year-old male assistant as he swiveled around to look at me. “The shorts are over there…” Not long after, he pointed roughly towards the exit once he realised I was never going to find anything to fit me in his store.
Deflated, I moved onto a swimwear store Bikini Island in an attempt to replace the ugly ALDI rash vest I’d been wearing over a maternity bra, and too-small bottoms. I am not kidding when I say I tried on 30 different bikinis and one-piece suits and NOTHING worked. The tops were the worst, because the only things out there with enough support look like something Dame Edna might choose. The sales assistants were pushy and kept trying to convince me that several of them looked great, but I knew better. Of course, this was all made even more depressing by the sight of teenaged models flaunting their tight stomachs and perky boobs in the latest summer fashions all over the shop walls. I wanted to smack them all in the face repeatedly.
Instead, I pulled the last one out of the clutches of my butt crack and took one final look at myself before deciding to call it a day. I tilted my head to one side as tears prick at my eyes. I looked like a condom full of walnuts. There were lumps and bumps everywhere and I couldn’t imagine anyone wanting to see this on the beach, so I give in.
My mother visited me soon after my shopping excursion and was wearing a pretty funky pair of patterned baggy pants. They had an elasticised waist too so I rushed out to buy a couple of pairs. It saddens me to think I am now wearing the same exact clothes as my mother who is almost 30 years older than me (though she does look lovely). What saddens me further is that my somewhat larger mother in law wants to buy them too! Now, are my mother and MIL fashion forward, or am I seriously behind the 8 ball here???? I have to make sure mum and I aren’t wearing the same pants when we meet up in public otherwise that is just too embarrassing to contemplate.
Don’t get me wrong. Things are getting better, slowly. The weight is gradually disappearing, but I am still more Magda Szubanski than Miranda Kerr. So every time I see a Victoria’s Secret model or other Hollywood celebrity sashaying down a runway or a beach 3 minutes after giving birth a little piece of me dies. Thankfully, I still have lots of pieces I’m willing to sacrifice. And eventually, an excuse for a new wardrobe.