“We are on vaca this week, so I bought a new bathing suit. I can’t help it, I know it’s dumb, but this is what I do because I’m a masochist and I still like to let myself believe the universe is conspiring in my favor when really I think God and Mary and my mom are up there laughing at my naïveté and pouring another round.
It’s a two piece but with a high-waisted bottom which is like the mullet of swimwear: party on the top and full frontal coverage on the bottom. I didn’t try it on because I don’t totally hate myself and no one needs to pick me up from the Marshall’s changing room area floor and like I said I AM A WOMAN OF FAITH.
So instead I got here and the water beckoned me (to sit near it, not to go in, let’s not get crazy) and I went to throw on my new bathing suit and THE TOP WOULD NOT EVEN TIE AROUND MY RIB CAGE. I’d been in a new Marshall’s and must have lost my bearings and ended up in the juniors section because the lovely little boob cups were clustered together in the middle of my chest like two shy sisters afraid to let go of each other.
“Listen Mary Kate and Ashley,” I told them, tugging them apart, “I’m 38 and I’ve had—and fed—four babies. I’m gonna need you guys to say your goodbyes and be prepared to send letters because you ain’t gonna be anywhere near each other for the next few hours. Hell, you better hope I don’t lay on my back because if I do you will fall into my armpits along with the rest of my biology and we might never see you again.”
And the high rise bottom? Think going outside in your granny panties you save for the end of the laundry cycle. It cut right at the belly button so half was in and half was out and instead of an innie or an outie I had a halfie that couldn’t help but catch your eye, like the evil eye of Suaron but a little less inflamed.
Wearing this style bottom is like encasing half a sausage and then just giving up, letting the other half flop around into whatever shape it feels like depending on which direction the wind is blowing and how much gluten I had for dinner last night.
Why is this so hard, I wondered, tugging and adjusting and sucking in and praying. We are doing something wrong, ladies, I said not just to MK and A but to all of us, everywhere. My husband has had the same one pair of swimming trunks longer than we have had 3/4 of our children. You don’t see him riding this struggle bus.
And I did what I should have done all along. I pulled out my old faithful one piece with the sagged out middle and dragged my pilly butt seaside and took one look at the majesty of the ocean and remembered: God/Mom/Mary don’t make no mistakes.
Except maybe that bathing suit. That was a disaster.”
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