Sunday, June 10, 2012

Between you, me and the girls

by Andrea Mulder-Slater

I had a “What Not to Wear Moment” the other day. As with most of these moments, I was convinced I looked remarkable – until a nasty flash of self-awareness hit and I realized I did look remarkable, but in a train wreck kind of way.

The clasp on my nursing bra let go while I was placing a bag of heavy groceries in the back of my car. (There may or may not have been a watermelon involved.) Fortunately, my maternity t-shirt was snug enough to conceal my runaway boob, affording me the ability to discreetly clip myself back in place before grabbing a bag of chips and acknowledging the cigar smoking gentleman in the pickup truck next to me.

Here’s what’s wrong with the previous paragraph. I stopped nursing my daughter more than a year ago and… I’m NOT pregnant. To make matters worse, the jeans I was wearing did not have a zipper and could easily be worn by someone in their second trimester.

You know how some women (celebrities and other freaks of nature) refuse to wear maternity clothes while expecting? Well, apparently, I refuse to stop wearing them. It’s a disorder – not unlike wearing black t-shirts and blue jeans. Every. Freaking. Day.

Needless to say, I was in need of a shopping trip. Real shopping. In a mall and everything.

The opportunity came a few days ago.

While Geoff busied himself at that store he likes so much (y’know, the one where everyone walks around sucking energy gel out of plastic tubes while wearing shorts with big padded bums), my mother, daughter and I headed to a shopping centre where I made a mad dash for the Macy’s lingerie department.

Jantje bribed the 3 year old with $1 a shot merry-go-round rides in the food court, while I wildly grabbed as many underclothes as I could in under a minute. I must have appeared frantic because I’m fairly certain a loss prevention specialist started tailing me. Either that or she was a lesbian with low self-esteem who was ready to settle for less. A lot less.

Aim higher sweetheart. You can do better. I’m no prize. Seriously. I’M WEARING A NURSING BRA.

Inside the dressing room, my first realization was that bra sizes are arbitrary. What I mean by that is -- none of them fit me. So I tried again, and this time I looked before I grabbed.  Padded, push-up, convertible, racerback, shelf, strapless, t-shirt, underwire, ergonomic, cupless. Cupless? What the Hell? Who in the eff wears a cupless bra? 

Nevermind. I just looked it up.

Here’s the thing. I come from a long line of big-chested women. If my mother, my aunts, my cousins and I all got together, we could solve the world's hunger problem – if you get my drift. When I was younger, I thought I had escaped the curse – but then I got pregnant and well… knocker city. And, in case you get the wrong idea, think Fiona from Shrek – not Pam Anderson, the Baywatch years.

In the end, I resigned myself to the fact that I am not one of those women who will be contained by a bralette or demi cup. Instead, I settled for a wide-strap, four-snap, breathable, full-support brassiere that could easily house a family of rabbits. Big rabbits. Jack rabbits.

In other words… Nothing. Sexy. About. It.

You can almost hear the echo.

Still, just as I began to feel sorry for me and my Danny DeVitos, I heard some huffs, puffs and groans, followed by the statements, “Oh dear God, this is not good.” and, “Get back in there.” coming from the dressing room next to mine.

I know what you're thinking. But you're wrong. As was I.

Evidently, my desperate lesbian loss prevention specialist was just another buxom gal, trying to squeeze herself into a bra with cups the size of mushroom caps.

We exited our respective rooms at the same time and as we each returned our delicate, pretty bras designed for pre-adolescents to the “no-fit” rack, we nodded knowingly at one another as we both left the area, each carrying giant Playtex Cross Your Heart boxes.

Solidarity sister. Solidarity. 

No, really.

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