Friday, April 1, 2011

If You Can't Change It, Charge It: How to Avoid Depression While Shopping

Morning Readers,

     We stood there desperately deciding whether to hold hands and take the first steps together, or split-up and try to act natural. Settling on something located in the middle of those two extremes, we grabbed a bag and stayed within a two-foot proximity. We'd made all the necessary preparations for this outing, but it still wasn't time to get crazy, run off, and leave each other in danger of matching nervous breakdowns. Yesterday was my first shopping trip post-pregnancy (nay) the first shopping trip since before I got pregnant. A frightening thing, to be sure, but I adhered to the Do's and Don'ts before I said "yes" to this particular trip. A few simple rules to ease the pain of shopping, the Do's and Don'ts are a must for any of you, my Readers, who are venturing into your favorite store with a different body than the last time you were there.

Do: Take a friend who has recently been pregnant, given birth, and whose self-esteem registers in the same area that yours does. 10 being the highest, she should come in at your current score of a 3.

Don't: Take a skinny friend. Even if she likes babies, if she's never popped one out, she won't be able to fully sympathize when you're trying to explain that you're having trouble tucking your muffin top into the cute pair of cropped capris you timidly plucked from the rack. She's a size 4, and although she'll try to comfort you with, "'s ok." it's only going to make you contemplate how stealthily can creep under her dressing room and stab her with your, now empty, wire hanger. Murder=jail=ugly jumpsuit....counter-productive to your mission.

DO: Throw out any preconceived notions about size. You're not in college anymore. And, while you may have been "size 4 girl" several years ago, it won't do you any good to hold onto foggy visions of a once-toned tummy and a butt that was three inches farther from the ground. Throw on supportive underwear, pick things that you love, and revel in the comfort of bigger pants.

Don't: Sit in the dressing room crying and rocking back and forth because you can't squeeze into something. That garment was evil and should probably be burned anyway. Wait for the sales girl to walk by and then launch it at her head, for all I care. But sitting there until they have to cuff you and drag you out is embarrassing and causes extra paperwork.

Do: Find a store having a sale that carries age-appropriate clothing. High waists and shirts that cover your ENTIRE stomach are a good thing. No one's ever complemented me on the cute stretch marks hanging out from under my tank top.

Don't: Try and blend-in with the thirteen-year-olds shopping at Abercrombie, 5,7,9 or Victoria's Secret PINK store. Besides the fact that you look like you're following kids to throw them in your un-marked van, it's just silly to think that you can rock super-short shorts and teeny, tiny t-shirts. Drop the fuzzy boots and the sweatpants with "Juicy" stamped on the butt, and back out of the store slowly.

     Putting all these rules into play, my faithful companion and I braved the stores, found things that we loved, and tried to restrain ourselves from spending every last dime in our checking accounts. This weekend, instead of going naked, I'll be able to throw on my new clothes, and proclaim to the world, "I love my big pants!" .....or something like that.

Have a great weekend, Readers!