Did I just strike terror into your heart? Well, you're not alone. You should have seen me last Saturday, having a nervous breakdown in a Target changing room. My body has borne five human beings. And it shows.
I don't want to look. I don't want to look.
So I sat there, fully clothed, doing some yoga breathing to slow my heart-rate. I took out my little notebook and jotted down some notes. Anything really, to avoid the inevitable horror of looking at myself in a swimsuit. In the changing room next to me, two teenagers were bemoaning the cruelties of their miserable lives.
"It just p****es me off that he'd invite Maria but he wouldn't invite me," one said.
"Seriously. Like WTF?" replied her friend.
Life is tough, girls. Better make peace with that while you're still young.
Why am I doing this? I don't want to buy a swim suit, let alone SWIM in one!
I was really letting myself sink down into depression. Good thing I know where that line of thought leads: absolutely nowhere. So, I stopped myself. I wrenched my mind away from the negative thoughts and began to think different thoughts:
Your children don't care how you look. They just want you to play with them in the pool.
I stood up. I tried on the first swimsuit.
Nobody is looking at you. Plus, you'll get a better tan in a swimsuit!
I tried on the second swimsuit.
See? Not so bad. Add a nice, wide-brimmed hat and you'll feel fine.
I spun around a few times, checking out the various angles.
Now, stop looking too hard. You don't need to obsess. It fits, it works, it's a nice color. Get your clothes back on and go home.
I walked out of Target feeling good. Because really, it's not about the suit, the stretch marks, or the varicose veins. It's about the smile on your face and the smiles on your children's faces when you come charging into the pool yelling: WHO WANTS TO PLAY MARCO POLO?
My body has borne five human beings and it shows---in my ear-to-ear smile.