Thursday, April 29, 2010

HEY "NAKEY" LADY...bathing suit bottoms are NOT optional.

i want to begin this story by saying thank you, God, for not allowing us to see into the future! because it we could, then yesterday would have never happened. if i had even had an inkling of what was in store for me yesterday afternoon, i can assure you i would have never gotten out of bed.

the morning started out okay. i got up, dressed and swung by to pick up mama and daddy for our weekly Bible study that we go to on Wednesdays. just before we got there my sister, paula, called and asked me if i wanted to go shopping with her after lunch. now, if you know me personally, then you know that i am NOT a big fan of malls! i am claustrophobic and can not stand to be in crowds of people. especially when we are in an enclosed space. so usually, if i have to go to one, i will park outside of the store i want to go in, grab what i need/want and then hightail it back to my car. and then, if i need/want something else, i drive to the next store and do the same thing. it's a pain, i know, which is why i rarely do malls. but anyway, i said yes. i needed a few things. for summer. for the beach. so, after a nice lunch at Fiddlers with mama and daddy, i picked paula up and we headed to the mall. when we got to the store i asked her what she wanted to look at first...and my stomach started turning at that moment when the dreaded words spilled out of her mouth. (thank you again, God, for giving me the sense to have just a few small bites of a chef salad for lunch.) she wanted to go to the AAAIIIIIEEEEEEE...bathing suit department! NOOOOOOOOOOOO!!!!!! my good day was going to take a nosedive into depression. i absolutely DETEST shopping for a bathing suit. why, you ask? well, if you are a woman reading this, no explanation is needed. if, however, you are a man....well, i will try and explain.

i was practically raised at Ft. Myers Beach, FL. my parents have owned a condo there for many, many years. and before that, we stayed in a cottage on the beach, usually for several weeks in the summer. now, my parents go there for several months in the summer and the last two years i went with them. because they need someone with them. and that someone would be me. and my sister, terri. i remember a couple of years ago, when i was there with the middle aged man who would later leave me for greener pastures, and my two grandkids. we were taking a walk down to the point and letting them look for shells. we passed this couple, probably in their late 30's, laying out in their chairs, just 15-20 feet from the edge of the water.. she was was a rather large woman. i would say about 350 lbs. of large. and she had on a two piece bathing suit. and i was thinking to myself, "oooookkkkkk....she is very confident in her skin. she is telling the world that it's ok to be big and still put on a bathing suit. and walk down the beach. she wasn't concerned about what other people thought of her. good for her. and we continued to walk. on our way back the kids were walking just a little ahead of us. suddenly they turned around and started running back to us really excited about something. we thought they had found a "treasure" in the sand. but as they got closer they said, "grandmama, that lady up there is "nakey!" she don't have no bottoms on! WHAT???!!!!" we kept walking and we came up on the same rather large woman as she was coming out of the water and walking back to her chair. and she really didn't have on a bottom! because when she was out there swimming, the bottom of that two piece bathing suit had crept up and disappeared into her nether regions...and she had not bothered to try and find it. she just walked back to her chair and layed back down...ON HER STOMACH! naked as a jaybird on her backside. and this was a public beach. now, don't get me wrong. i applaud her for being brave. or confident. or whatever she was being. but exposing herself to other people who were just there for a nice stroll down the beach was just wrong folks! i didn't want my grandkids seeing her in all her glory! I didn't want to see her in all her glory! so, women need to be very selective when picking out a bathing suit.

first of all you must make the really big decision...which department do i head to? do i want to fantasize that i am still a 16 yr. old and head over to the JUNIORS section and pick out a really, really cute two piece that was designed for stick people and convince yourself that well, you still FEEL 16, and make stupid remarks to the salesgirl like "my daughter is about this small (making a circle with your hands) so what size do you think she would be? knowing all the while that SHE KNOWS you probably don't even have a daughter and that you are a 50 yr. old woman who wants to dress like she's still a teenager. and that she's looking at your 50 yr. old body and thinking to herself..."lady, there is no way on God's green earth that you are going to fit THAT into THIS! PUH-LEEEEEEEZ.

or, do you totally avoid THAT particular humiliation and head over to the MISSES section. where you fantasize that you are still a 21-35 yr. old and pick out a really, really cute "tankini." that was designed for stick people and ask stupid questions like "my daughter-in-law wears a size 6 in these suits run small?" knowing all the while that she is wanting to say, "get real are 50 yrs. old. you probably have grandkids. your daughter-in-law would NOT be having her MOTHER-IN-LAW in here picking out HER bathing suit! who are you trying to kid? go on over to the WOMENS section, where you belong. grow up. you had your heyday...a loooooong time ago. face reality. your prime passed you about 15 - 20 years ago."

or, do you just accept the fact that you ARE, indeed, a woman. with curves. in all the wrong places. and head on over to the WOMENS section. where you can now browse the limited number of "bathing skirts" or "bathing dresses" or, as my sisters and i like to call them, "parachutes." where every suit you see was designed for a stick people person, who is pregnant. or very, very small breasted and requires 3 inches of padding in the cups to make you look like the WOMAN that society thinks you are supposed to be. i am totally bewildered in this section. i don't wear dresses to church! why on earth would i want to wear a dress in a SWIMMING POOL? where when you get in the water the bottom of the "dress" floats up around your neck...and all the little kids in the pool jump in with their googles on so they can go underwater and see the "humpback whale...with a dress on!"

so, yesterday i considered my options. (and it was a rude awakening.) i finally admitted to myself that i will never ever again, in this lifetime, be a JUNIOR size. i decided to avoid the JUNIORS department altogether. the MISSES and the WOMENS sections were combined in this particular store, so i was able to look at both, while still feeling slightly incognito. i grabbed a few suits and made a bee line for the dressing rooms. and it was there, behind door #3 that i sunk into the deep, dark abyss of mortification.


first of all, the few times i have gone with my boys into a mens dressing room, i found them to be nothing at all like the womens. they have one mirror in a closet sized space. and one hook to hang your clothes on. because men usually take in one thing, try it on, take it off and buy it. they don't really care how big those jeans make their butt look. they don't seem to mind if their pants are dragging on the ground when they walk, or worse, have the crotch hanging down to their knees. they put on a shirt, button it and voila' it fits! to the cash register they go. their shopping is finished. they go home and watch the ball game and eat ice cream and popcorn. and double quarter pounders with cheese. super-sized. and spend the rest of the day flipping the remote back and forth and back and forth understand what i'm saying.
 behind door #3 was a good size room. with a chair. to put your purse on i was guessing. and 3 hooks. and THREE mirrors. so you can see yourself from every angle at the same time. now THAT alone is pretty alarming.) the lighting is bright. harsh white light. i don't like to try clothes on in a store. because i have always heard on these undercover stories they do on dateline and 20/20 that some stores have security officers watching you, behind two way mirrors. or  they video you trying on clothes, to make sure you don't steal anything. (right...i think somebody is either a) a pervert. b) likes to watch women make fools of themselves or c) have been forced to watch by their employer, who is twisted.but, in this case, i decided to try the clothes on because i did not want to have to come back to the mall. to return them. i wanted this horror to be over in one day.

so i loaded one hook with shirts, one with bathing suits and one with pants and shorts. i tried the pants on first. mmmmm...ok, they fit. but i really didn't want to wear long pants all summer. because i get really, really hot. not just outside in the sun, but inside in the air conditioning. so, i grabbed a pair of shorts. they were looooong. somewhere in the middle of shorts and capris. nope. not for me. i tried on a shorter pair. cute, but i was pretty sure you would be able to see part of my cheeks when i walked. not pretty on a 50 yr. old woman. another pair, too big (wow on that,) another pair, too tight. i had one pair left. a really cute pair of jean shorts. they were just the kind that i like. but when i picked up the ones in my size i thought, good grief, these things must run really big! they looked ginormous. so i grabbed the next size down, thinking they would be a better fit. WRONG. i managed to get them up, and over my badonkadonk...but as far as the two sides meeting in the middle where the zipper was....ummm...NO! it wasn't going to happen. no matter how much i sucked in. or tugged...they were not going to cooperate. and now, you are probably thinking the exact same thing that popped into my head. OH MY GOODNESS...that means my butt must be even more ginormous than i thought. that means that ginormous pair i had picked up earlier in my size, WAS MY SIZE!!! the depression crept in. forget the shorts. i'll just get some cute shirts and wear them with what i already have.
i put on the first one. a really, really cute tank top that i just loved. bright, cheery colors. GASP! it fit so tight that it looked like it was painted on. you could see the freckles on my stomach if you looked close enough. and everything else...if you catch my drift. off it went. it was getting warm behind door #3. i was beginning to perspire a little bit. i tried on the next one. a gauzy white, button down the front, which would look good either buttoned, or open, with a tank underneath. you know, the layering kind of look that's so popular nowadays. it fit. i could wear a tank under it. but if i wanted to wear it buttoned, with a pair of pants or capris, WAS NOT GOING TO HAPPEN. because while it DID button, there were gaps in between each button. large gaps. because these kind of shirts were obviously designed for those same stick people. who have no "girls" to speak of. the ones that need the bathing suits with the three inches of padding. not for women who have more than their fair share of "girls." not for women like me...who have more than enough natural padding of their own. back on the hanger it went.

i had a few left. the next three fit and i decided they were keepers. YAY.

then i was down to the last one. and it was the one i liked the best. it was a really unusual, funky type of shirt, but it looked so summery and light and i was really hoping it was going home with me. it had all these little cut out thingys on the shoulder and the back. you could dress it up or dress it down with jeans. it went on over my head and i had just the teeniest bit of trouble getting it down over my "girls." but i managed and once in place it actually looked really cute. i was a happy camper. i was feeling the depression lift just a little. i was going to go home with at least four new shirts! and then...everything went downhill. quickly. as i began to take the shirt off i began to realize that i had put one of the shoulder straps on wrong. i tried pulling the shirt up, back over the "girls," but it wasn't going back up. what is that saying...what goes up, must come down?. well, there is no saying, that i know of, that says once it is down, it must go back up. and this shirt knew that too. I couldn't get it off. and i started sweating. not just a little perspiration. BIG, HUGE drops of sweat. i started breathing hard. and i could feel the panic crawling up towards my throat. which i knew, being claustrophobic, would turn into a full fledged scream when it got there. i began tugging and pulling on that shirt and i started hearing little sounds come bubbling up out of my mouth. and at that point i didn't care if i ripped that fabric in two pieces...i was getting that thing off of me come hell or high water! i gave it a final tug and it gave up. i now understood what the chair was in there for. not to lay your purse on. it was there for people who were hyperventilating because they couldn't get free of their clothes! i collapsed on that chair and tried to breathe. and i found some kleenex in my purse and dried the sweat off of me. and i rested. all that was left was the bathing suits. and there was not a chance that i was trying those on in that room behind door #3. i could just envision the person who was stuck on security duty...watching the show that i had just put on. i feel the need to apologize to them for having to watch such...such... a freak show. and i also need to apologize to the lady who was behind door #2. i can't even begin to imagine what she must have thought was going on in the room next door. all the heavy breathing and the little noises that erupted from somewhere deep inside me. i was just mortified. and the depression had not only crept in. it decided it was going to stay awhile.

i paid for the things that i wanted to keep. and i told paula i was ready to go home. i was worn out.

after a long, cold shower and an hour of bed rest, i decided to try on those two bathing suits i had brought home. looks like i have to go back to the mall. to return them. and i came to a conclusion that i'm not happy about at all.

 it is going to be a very hot summer for me this year. because i'm going to the beach ...IN JEANS.

1 comment:

Judy Kirkland said...

I so understand
And why are petite jeans 3 inches to long. Petite means short and not 5 ct 5 which is how tall you would need to be to wear them.