Sunday, June 3, 2012

Maiden Bikini Voyage

I have not bought a new swimsuit in about four years. Since I really only wear one a few times a year, (both because of lack of opportunity to swim and because I never really fancied prancing about half-naked in front of strangers) it didn't really seem necessary to upgrade. But I'm going home next week (yay!) and I fully intend on making use of my parents' current pool. Out of curiosity, I tried on my old suit last night. I was both overjoyed and dismayed that it hung limply on my new body like a tropical-print muumuu. So huzzah for me for losing weight, but boo for having to pay for a new suit when I'm super broke and probably won't use it very often. So this afternoon, I was off to Target, armed with my ill-advised credit card that still carries the balance from my last yoga-inspired shopping spree.

I wish Target carried this suit!

Clothes shopping has become pretty fun since I've lost weight. It's exciting to see the numbers go down and actually have to ask for a smaller size instead of the humiliation of a zipper not going up on a pair of jeans you thought were your size. But even 81 pounds later, bathing suit shopping still sucks ass. For one thing, I'm still sort of between regular and plus sizes when it comes to swimwear. Meaning I'm either drowning in frilly mini-skirt bottoms designed to cover middle-aged, cellulite-ridden thighs, or my muffin top is spilling out of a tankini meant for a sixteen year old girl who has never known the taste of Splenda. (Hope you enjoy that visual, that's my gift to you!) There are very few options for someone who doesn't have children in college and isn't about to send in their college applications.

What most plus-sized bathing suits look like.  Yeah. Not cute.
I feel bad for this model who had to pretend like she likes it.

I decided to go for basic black, simple and chic. The big, bold prints that the plus sized "fashion" industry seems to fixate on, are no one's friend. You'd think it would be an easy process to pick out a black swimsuit, but it literally took me an hour and a half just to decide on the very first one I tried on. I'm such a girl sometimes... I stuck with the old reliable tankini and regular bottoms, since one-pieces bum me out. They're also impractical when you have to pee. But in a moment of boldness (and by moment I mean 45 minutes of painful deliberating), I also bought a matching bikini top. This may not seem like a big deal to you, but you should know that I have never worn a bikini in my life. Even when I still could probably pull one off, my religion prevented me from baring my stomach. When I was finally free of those restrictions, my weight had already skyrocketed. As a favor to society, I abstained from that particular look.

What I wish I looked like in my new suit...

But now that I'm working out like a maniac (doing the Flashdance routine as I type), I actually don't look too shabby. While I still have a looooong way to go, I can almost pull this off. I seriously doubt that I'll ever have the guts to actually wear the bikini out in public (there's a major fading stretch mark issue to deal with still). But it was a huge step to even purchase it and believe that someday I actually might go out in a bikini and not become Captain Ahab's new object of obsession.


  1. Swimsuit shopping sucks no matter what size you are. I know a girl who's a size 2 at the largest, and she was just telling me how she didn't work out to get ready for bikini season this year and that she's embarrassed to go in public wearing one. Whaaaaat? Just nuts.

    I've finally come to realize that I don't really care if I have a little cellulite showing or a vein popping out of my leg at the pool. I don't judge other people at the pool, why do I think they're all judging me? People are so busy worrying about how they look that they don't have time to care how I look!

    Anyway, congratulations on your swimsuit purchase! Wear it proud and take advantage of living near the coast! Jumping around in the waves is my favorite. :)

  2. I always try to remind myself of that whenever I'm feeling self-conscious. Everyone is just as insecure, if not more so than I am. But the reality is that other people really do look fine in a bikini, whereas I can only marginally pull it off (as long as I stay standing or with my shoulders and below in the water).

    It's a tough break for us ladies, but oh well. I'll post an update if I ever do end up wearing it in public.