It’s nearly bathing suit time. In my opinion, there is not a more difficult item of clothing to manage. This is the one where all the world can see the body I feel so self conscious about. Soon it will be in the 90’s every day and my children will be begging to go to swimming.
This year I have a new bathing suit, and I’m ready to enjoy summer afternoons playing games and making shapes with my body while jumping off the side at the pool with my children. There’s the pencil jump, the frog jump, the rock star jump… you can imagine.
I got my new suit 70% off at the end of the summer last year. My daughter went with me and that was a joy, once I got over my initial discomfort.
We walked into JC Penney and right away the sensory overload that so quickly reminds me why I hate shopping engulfed me. I am working on learning how to shop, though, so I bravely walked to the swimsuit area where Rich had told me they were having a sale. I surveyed the rack of suits I wouldn’t be caught dead in and thought, Forget it. Who cares if my swim suit is four years old and the elastic is worn? I can make it go one more season…
And then I heard Rich’s words echo inside my head… Oh, COME ON! You think you can make anything… out of dirt… from the side of the road!” It is my husband’s fun, teasing reminder that he notices when I’m trying to skimp by on too little.
OK, OK… I start looking through the suits….
There are a few one piece suits… good. Some of the modest two piece suits that cover the whole me would be OK too… Bathing suits stretch a lot… I wonder if bathing suit sizes are the same as regular sizes, because I’m not seeing anything close to my size… Oh look – that one might work…
I find a couple of things worth trying on.
My daughter is flipping through the suits too. She holds one up. It is a one piece – turquoise and black with a zipper down the front. “It’s your size, Mom. Do you like it?”
I add it to the couple I have in my hand.
Time to find a changing room. I look around, momentarily unable to discern how I even got into this store in the first place let alone how to find a changing room. I just start walking, and suddenly my daughter shouts out and points “fitting room!”
Good. Thanks Sweetie!
We go into the changing room. I pull a pair of shorts-style bottoms on over my underwear; I guess I’m not extra-small.
“Mom, your keister is showing!” my daughter giggles. I try on another another bottom. That one fits. She thinks it’s cute, so I try on a top to go with it. She gives her review: “Well, that one would be OK if you sew it here to make the straps a little shorter…”
Fine – forget the two-piece idea. I try on a one-piece. She hooks it on in the back for me.
“That’s a little old-ladyish,” comes the verdict.
She sits on the little bench looks me over and laughs. I laugh too. OK, OK. I try on the black and turquoise one. Wow! It fits great! I like it.
What am I doing? I’m shopping and laughing! This is shopping. It’s usually awful. I usually hate it. But two are better than one.
My daughter, she made a task I find difficult so much fun!
I Win, Krissy Close
False Beliefs: Restrictive Eating, Constance Rhodes