I've been feeling very positive since the great experience I had with my bridal portraits last week, so I decided to take advantage of the good vibes and take myself bathing suit shopping. Normally, this is the number one most dreaded shopping event of the year, and I'm sure all my girls out there will agree. But with the wedding less than two weeks away, I feel like nothing can bring me down off my cloud, not even staring at my body wearing a small piece of spandex under the glare of fluorescent lights. Plus, we are taking a honeymoon cruise to the Bahamas the day after the wedding, so I wanted to have something new and fun to wear. The only bathing suit that I currently own is so saggy in the bust that any ocean waves coming at me bring with them almost certain accidental flashing nightmares.
After work, I headed down to Peebles. Every now and then you find a gem there, and with major summer clearance sales going on, I had high hopes that I would find something. The selection consisted of two small racks. As I stepped closer to the first one, I saw that the top rack held the more "mature" suits; swim dresses with hideous flower curtain patterns. The lower rack held the total opposite...teeny tiny junior's bikinis. The top of the other rack held the "sporty" tankinis (been there, done that), and the bottom just had a few odds and ends; mostly mismatched tops and bottoms. I was sure none would come in my size. But lo and behold! After thumbing through a few of the misfits, I came across an adorable boho-style top and matching bottom...sizes 12/14!
I was so excited to find the suit, which happened to be on sale for a whopping total of fifteen dollars. But now I had to try it on. Last week, I would have never even considered plucking a bikini off a rack, let alone trying it on. But I was feeling all full of myself and honeymoon happy so what the hell. I went for it. I held my breath (much like I did when I opened the link to my bridal pics) and stepped into the bottoms. They fit! Slung just low enough around my hips to not squeeze any muffin-top, I felt comfortable and confident. The top may be a different story, I feared. As most of you know by now, my "girls" are somewhat large, and it's difficult enough to find a bra. But after a couple of bends, tugs and shakes, I was good to go and ready to turn back around to the mirror. To my pleasant surprise, I didn't look bad at all! My girls were under control, and I felt good. Giddy even,
My eyes did eventually start to wander, looking for the flaws as I always tend to do. Gazing over the most-hated spider veins and cellulite on my thighs and the stretch marks on my hips, I nearly went to that place that's been keeping me down. Instead I looked myself in the eye and said out loud, "stop it". I forced my gaze up to the waist that Billy loves to put his arms around, the hair he loves to twist, and the butt he says he can't stop staring at. Not too shabby.
What makes me, and most women, always focus on the bad? Why can't we look at ourselves and see what our partners and our friends see? When I look at my girlfriends, I always notice their most beautiful features...my friend Amber has a killer smile and lovely curves. Brooke has the most gorgeous curly hair and beautiful blue eyes. Sarah has a flat little stomach and powerful, horseback rider's legs. But like me, these women tend to focus on the negative and can't see beyond their perceived flaws. If we could view ourselves in the same light as our loved-ones do, the world would definitely be a much better place. I plan to think this over while sipping pina coladas in my new bikini, on my honeymoon cruise with the man who sees and loves what I am just now starting to appreciate.
Published On: October 07, 2010