On tap today is a little rant… probably along the lines of conventional wisdom gone awry, but maybe not.
I’m overweight. No secret there. How overweight? Significantly. I got down to where a 1x or 2x size in most stores fit me just fine in 2014, but after my stint with anxiety and depression that hospitalized me I regained about 50lbs. I’m now enjoying a solid 3x life and I’m okay with that. Again, most places I shop, that label size fits me. Or, rather, it used to!
Today, I’m just about 16 weeks pregnant. Four months along. Only in the last three weeks did my jeans start to get uncomfortable, I like them roomy anyway. So, I head to the trusty internet to do some shopping for maternity pants- you know, the sexy ones with the “hidden” spandex panel for the belly? Well, I happily found my size in a couple of styles on sale at Motherhood and hit the “buy me” button after double checking the size chart. Thanks to a snow storm, it took the better part of two weeks to arrive. In that time, as my waistband got perceptively tighter day by day, little by little, my body image started to challenge me. I have to remember… the number on the scale is holding steady, what my pants say doesn’t matter for now!
Repeat: the number on the scale is holding steady, what my pants say doesn’t matter for now!
When my Motherhood.com package arrived, I was giddy. I immediately pulled open the package and whipped out the first pair of pants. I slid them on over my feet, my calves, my… guh, grrr… thighs… SCREECHING HALT. Those magical panels of spandex and knit were *not* going to heave up my hips and belly no matter what.
Did I order the wrong size? No. Did they ship the wrong size? No… F*ck. For the first time in a long time I’m the victim of a clothing designer’s personal view of what a size means. I really don’t think I got my measurements wrong, I really think the brand has an odd view of what 3x means. At best it was a size I’d usually look at as probably a tight 2x, if not a 1x. Damn it.
I admit it… I cried. I was evidently looking forward to the rite of passage that was maternity clothes and now, the door was shut. I’ve already worried about how long it will take to look pregnant (25 weeks is the average response for someone of my size I’m hearing). I’ve already worried that I won’t have a “classic” baby bump that’s so coveted these days (mine will look like a B shape if it appears at all). I’ve already worried about just about everything… and now this basic thing is denied to me.
It took a couple of days but I’ve pulled myself together brilliantly. I went back to my normal favorite clothing stores, explained that I’m pregnant and got some caring customer service finding pant styles that will grow with me (and are comfortable, f*ck you very much Motherhood.com) and shirts and blouses that will accentuate my blooming bosom and belly (if/when it pops). There was such sweet relief found in that fitting of lycra and elastic!
I’ve also been working really hard to keep reminding myself the mantra above and taking in all the articles that prove, time and again, clothing sizes are arbitrary. This is a great one that WeightWatchers published.
I’m a super plus sized woman. I’m pregnant. It happens- often apparently. I won’t say I “deserve” the same comfort and style afforded to other women who are in a family way, but I certainly think it stinks that I’m not considered in the equation of planning. Yet another arena of lost revenue for them, poor sods!
I will rock this pregnancy one way or another. And I’ll look cute doing it too. Or elegant… depends on my mood.