I went bathing suit shopping last week.
I took my kids.
And, I actually bought a bathing suit.
Yes, I would like a medal, thank you for asking.
As a matter of fact, I have even compiled a list of pros and cons to help you decide if you are considering taking your kids along on a bathing suit shopping expedition such as mine.
- loyal fans: I got plenty of smiles, applause, and “Ooooh, that looks SO cute on you, Mom!”
- larger change room
- no expectation that you will wrangle the rejected suits back onto their hangers before leaving
- decisiveness – no patience here for lollygagging and re-trying the “possibles”
- awkward full-volume moments: “Mom, you are only in your underwear!” (at least they know I follow the undergarment rules)
- more awkward full-volume moments: “Mom, I can see your nipples!” (at least she has finally got those and armpits sorted out…made for some interesting conversations: “Tickle my nipples, tickle my nipples!” “No, Gemma, NO, those are ARMPITS!”)
- perpetual risk of skimpy curtain “door” being whisked open at a compromising moment
Have you ever tried this? Do the pros outweigh the cons, or vice versa?
I know one should never go bathing suit shopping in the midst of snow, when the past days have been full of nothing but thick, warming, comfort food. Snow outside makes me do crazy things inside, like not drain the fat after cooking bacon, not stop at one kind of cheese on my evening nachos, not do anything requiring slipper and housecoat removal…which is to say, it’s a good thing for my figure that I don’t live in Ottawa anymore, where snow was a 4 month affair. In Vancouver, snow for a week is a rarity.
So you might wonder how it happened that this one week of snow managed to coincide with bathing suit shopping, something I do less than once every three years.
It’s a bit of a long story, suffice to say we had to be out of the house while Carl worked, and I had already signed Gemma up for swimming lessons starting next week, and, since I think my 18-month-old is beyond the age of sitting happily in his stroller for 45 minutes while his sister swims, this all required my entry into the pool with him.
My goal was to purchase my first one piece bathing suit, and if this trip taught be anything besides the fact that your embarassment threshold gets a LOT higher when you have children, it is that one piece suits are not for everyone.
I feel, with two kids, like maybe I’ve reached a point where bikinis need to be forgotten. My current bikini, in particular, is far too easy for flailing little hands to adjust in ways adjustment should not be made, with skimpy tied bows at all the crucial closure points. Going into a public pool during preschool swimming lessons, I would feel more than a little exhibitionist in my ruffled little bright coral number.
However, after much trying I could not make the one piece work. I’m the kinda gal that carries the extra baking weight in the bum and thighs, and, in a one piece, that’s kind of all you see. Maybe if I had some distractions working for me up top it would help, but the girls are decidedly not distracting. So, that leaves my thinnest part at my waist. I tried tankinis and that was almost worse – now I was in a one piece with a slash across the middle.
What do you know, I ending up leaving shamefacedly with a bikini, apologizing to the clerk that I was purchasing it despite the two children clamoring for attention by my side. She laughed it off, but I’m sure she agreed.
What do you think? Do bikinis ever become inappropriate? Maybe a better question…are they ever appropriate? Do I need to wear a tank top to the pool and save this for a sunny getaway? I’m all torn up.
I can just see Carl reacting like this when I show him the new “one piece” I convinced him I needed to buy: