I’m not sure what prompted the urgency, but late last week I was sure that I had to have new bras. It might have been spillage (don’t judge – I’ve gained a few “el-bees” what with the meal train pulling into the station right on time with lots of amazing food and my commitment to not let a morsel go to waste). Perhaps wearing the same bra 24/7 at the hospital and seeing its dingy condition in the unforgiving light of a hospital room pushed me to this conclusion.
I love new “intimates”. Fresh and well-fitting lingerie makes clothing fit and look better. Truly, I love new undergarments when they are beautiful because they make me feel beautiful. However, finding the right fit in this particular category is challenging and even frustrating. Couple that with the obscene prices and it’s pretty easy to understand why I dread shopping for them.
For whatever reason, the stars aligned and there was a sale and a coupon and it was a Monday holiday for me. My hubby is recovering from back surgery and hasn’t been able to venture out much, so he was anxious to ride along. Note that he was a willing participant, lest any male readers think I dragged him along against his will. The poor man has been confined to the house, so even knowing how painfully frustrating this experience can be he was willing to tag along.
We walked to the back corner of the store where there were no less than a few thousand bras on display. Seriously, I’m always overwhelmed by the “variety” and selection afforded. The next thing that amazes me in the process is the fact that no matter what size I am currently in search of in this vast array of garments, there is nothing in my size in any style that even remotely appeals to my taste or body size.
Hubby took a seat just outside the fitting room and I wandered the maze of white, beige and the occasional colorful options. He was helpful, encouraging me to select something other than white or beige and certainly nothing sensible, because you know, testosterone. That, and the fact that he’s still prone to thinking like a middle school boy.
I was thrilled to find a handful (no pun intended – now who’s thinking like 12 year old?) of options and proceeded to the fitting room. While he was willing to accompany me while trying on, I was not willing to be banned from returning to this particular store so I declined his kind offer. However, he continued call out encouragement to step out of the fitting room into his line of sight. His motive, of course, was to evaluate the fit. My motive was to maintain my current status of never being arrested, so again I declined. He maintained that his request was Biblical:
“Oh, get up, dear friend, my fair and beautiful lover—come to me! Come, my shy and modest dove—leave your seclusion, come out in the open. Let me see your face, let me hear your voice. For your voice is soothing and your face is ravishing.”
Song of Solomon: 13a-14
What is wrong with retailers? The lighting in most fitting rooms is harsh and honest. I don’t want honesty when stripping down to my skin, friends. Lie to me! If you can make me look tan, even better!
Part of the problem is figuring out the size. I felt really ignorant and alone in this until I read that Angelina Jolie said “I didn’t even know my bra size until I made a movie.” So, there’s that reassurance.
My rule of thumb is that if you are hanging out of any part of the garment, it might be too small. I err on this one a lot because I tend to underestimate my gradual growth in this area. When did I become a “full-figured” gal???
When I was a teenager, my brother made skinny girl jokes about me wearing skis in the shower (you know, so that I didn’t go down the drain). Even as a young mom, after two pregnancies and finally achieving a normal weight, there were some bold (rude) people who made inappropriate remarks about my lack of cleavage. I fantasized about making an equally inappropriate response about the size of his, well, you know, but I was timid and shy. His teasing was not was not okay and I would never let it fly today.
The first trip in yielded nothing, but with a more realistic idea of the proper size I ventured into the fitting room again with exactly three options. A veritable gold mine of choices were mine to make.
Half an hour later I had selected not one, but two winners! One was even in the color choice that he was voting for! As we made our way to the front of the store, he pushing a walker and me victoriously grasping my new lovelies, I couldn’t help but notice a few stares. Apparently our foray was an anomaly! I just love being married to this man who makes life fun and reminds me that I am a beautiful, desirable woman even from behind a walker while completing the most dreaded of chores!
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