WHERE DID MY BIKINI BODY GO?
I was so glad to have a little time off from the kiddos where no one would be calling me mom for a few days. As a tradition the little nuggets get hauled off to grandmas and grandpas every summer for a whole week and the whole family looks forward to it every year. Ryan takes a week off from work and we use this time to reconnect with one another. We waved and kissed the kids goodbye and I thought "ahhh I finally have him all to myself!"
On the car ride home it's usually a bit awkward for the first 5 minutes because there are no longer 3 kids wanting, needing, or simply chatting/arguing about something in the back seat. Then a natural conversation ensues and we are eager to just relax, relate, and release with one another and, of course, spend "quality time" together. My worst nightmare is having one of the kids bust in on me and their hero-like father doing warm and fiery things so I really look forward to our alone time. Finally, it was time to make some "marital magic" happen!
I wish I could say it was a stellar performance but I noticed during one of our "heat of the night" sessions my breathing was a little heavier than normal and my elastic-like moves were a bit stiff and slightly suffocating. I silently laughed it off in my head thinking it was just my luck that this would happen tonight. I wanted to act like a trapeze artist, but I felt like a deflated tire. I honestly chalked it up to tiredness because after 11 years of marriage you feel like you know what you're doing!
Nevertheless we had an amazing week together so when it was time to pick up the kids I was relaxed, rejuvenated, and ready to see my sweet little rambunctious bundles of joy. My joy, however, turned to despair when the first thing that flew out of my daughter's mouth was "Oh Mom, you are getting so chubby!" I didn't know if I should ground her or face the truth.
Wow. The moment of truth.
Normally by summer I'm in decent shape to wear all the latest summer duds and show a little skin for my hubby. My personal style ranges from classic chic to glammy glam! I have a wide range of eclectic pieces in my closet when I am feeling a bit edgy, but mostly I'm a colorful conservative. This summer, however, I had packed 12.8 additional glorious pounds onto my 5'2" frame. YIKES... Life happens and when life happens to this chick, I eat. I had grubbed up 12.8 lbs. of emotion in less than two months. I know what you're thinking, "that's not so bad" and you're absolutely right. There are worse things that can happen to a girl. So instead of getting down on myself when I looked at the scale and I weighed what I would weigh when I'm at least 5-6 months pregnant I decided to use it as a tool to embrace my new body.
STANDING IN THE MIRROR
So after the mere shock and a brief OMG moment in the mirror while I held in my hands layers of extra meat (skin) around my stomach and thighs I gave myself permission not to be upset but instead to accept the "chubby" side of myself. Before you go off on a tangent and say "Chastity, you are not chubby" or "You are still small", I would like for you to hear me out. Although those statements may be true, every woman has her comfortable and ideal weight and no one has the right to dictate to another woman what that is, unless of course it is threatening her life. My whole life I have ranged from a size 2-4 and I have been comfortable and content being a larger 4 bordering a size 6 (normally a little big) unless of course I was pregnant or just had a baby. I have been able to maintain this size by keeping a (mostly) healthy balanced diet and workout plan.
When I look back on how I gained so much weight this summer, I realized that I was dealing with the loss of a loved one, transitioning in my career, working hard with family activities, and running a business all at the same time. I'm a very routine and structured person and when life throws me a curve ball I don't stop, quit, or bow out gracefully. I eat what I can't emotionally handle, as many women do. The reason this amount of weight took me by surprise, however, is that I usually check myself and go find out what's going on with me when I hit that "5 lb. over your normal weight" alarm. Not this time though! I ignored every warning sign and opted to "work it" away instead of dealing with the pain I was facing.
LOOKING AT THE TRUTH
Like every women who has failed to reach her weight loss goals before some event (i.e. wedding, graduation, reunion) I suddenly realized that our family vacation was literally days away. With no time to lose weight or schedule weight-loss surgery, I did what any woman would do and headed to the mall. I ran to JCPenney in a hurry to pick up a few pairs of shorts for our upcoming trip. As I wiggled my hips and hiney into a pair of size 4 shorts (my normal size), I was able to get them up but not buttoned. Then I did what most women do in the privacy of our dressing rooms..sucked in real tight, held my breath and tried to seal the deal. I was successful but dying. I had managed to button it but couldn't breath or sit down. Finally, I said to myself, "SELF are you seriously going to buy these too little shorts on a 6 state ROAD TRIP with the kids where you are most likely going to eat out every day and night for the next 9 days". Self replied "get the next size up and enjoy your trip!" And that's exactly what I did!
LIFE LESSONS LEARNED
This whole ordeal actually turned out to be very refreshing. Sometimes we don't meet all of our weight loss or life goals in the amount of time we had planned for them. As I mentioned, life happens. When you find yourself in this situation do what I did - acknowledge where you need to be and then move on and enjoy the moment! Vacations and family gatherings are no place to crucify yourself. Get a new look, and enjoy the time you have today and when you get home, plan to hit the track! And remember, you can still look cute, even when you're not at your goal weight. Here are my chubby summer style tips!
Short Shorts for Thick Thighs!
Style Tip: WEAR WHAT FITS: Proper fit is key. If it is too tight it's not right and if it's too baggy it makes you look saggy. Even if you have to go up a size or down a size, you are sure to look great. If necessary visit a tailor for alterations.
Classy Cutout Dress
Style Tip: CHOOSE YOUR CUTOUTS WISELY- All cutouts are not created equal. If the cutouts expose major private parts (breast meat, butt meat and even too much back meat), the likelihood of it coming off classy is slim to none. When exposing more skin in one area you want to consider covering up other areas. Choose a hairstyle that keeps your look soft, subtle, and classy. (e.g. classic bun)
Style Tip: Color and Swimsuit Style is everything. Whether you like a 2-piece, 1-piece, or a tankini you want to choose a suit that compliments your body type and a color that makes you feel confident. Wear a wrap, scarf, or cover-up if you need to but don't let your weight stop you from enjoying the beach or pool!
I hope you keep rocking your style and living and loving your life! Do me a favor and give yourself permission to accept your beauty right now.
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Until Next Time,
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