“It’s gonna look like I’ve got my life together and I’m wearing nice jeans, but underneath my shirt my belly rolls are breathing a sigh of relief and giving me a high five for being good to them.”
After you have babies, your body will most likely change. Even if you bounce back to pre-pregnancy weight, you will most probably realise your proportions are now different. Not necessarily bad, just different.
My first baby transformed my bust from a perky 10D to a 12G but I was still a size eight everywhere else. I had to adapt, and began to wear skirts and tops instead, but it didn’t stop the fact that I felt like Dolly Parton, attracted some rather judgey stares and strapless tops were way out of the realm of possibility.
It’s not uncommon to go through phases of difficulty buying clothes both before and after having kids, but one mum has described a recent trip to the shops with hilarity. And we’re nodding so hard our necks hurt.
“Pants are prisons”
Tiffany Jenkins is a mum-of-three, and admits she hasn’t been shopping for clothes since before her two-year-old was born. After spending the last few years wearing leggings, “because pants are prisons,” and because nothing fits her anymore. Like many mums, she’s holding onto clothes in her wardrobe in the hope that they will fit her again one day.
Feeling like she’s “stepped out of the space-time continuum,” Jenkins talks about all the things us mums begin to notice when we venture from the cloudy days of motherhood.
There’s the loud music (especially painful when you’re trying to shop while baby sleeps in the pram!), not to mention the fashion that comes back from our younger days looking just weird.
“I am in a different spectrum of clothes shopping now”
Jenkins is approached by a sales assistant and explains she’s looking for an outfit for a date. The assistant responds, “What size is your daughter?” and her reaction is priceless. You have to watch the clip. Just watch it.
“Now I know if there’s a store playing techno music or there’s really dark lights or it looks super fun, I’m not allowed to go in there anymore,” she says. “I have to go into the stores that are playing classical music and selling fanny packs.”
So off she goes, and after almost ripping her earlobe out after catching sight of a price tag on a T-shirt and wrestling with pants of various sizes in a cruel game of russian roulette, Jenkins is defeated.
An unexpected solution
She continues: “Just when I was about to say ‘eff it’ and hightail it home so that I could crawl into my mumu and shove chocolate cake down my face, I found myself standing in front of Motherhood Maternity.”
After swallowing her pride and venturing beyond the store’s threshold, Jenkins cries to the shop assistant: “Everything in this mall is either too small or too expensive and I don’t know how to shop and I’m really sad!”
So what does she come home with?
Not one, not two … but THREE pairs of jeans with maternity waist bands.
“I’m not even mad about it. In fact I’m pretty proud of myself. Because from all outward appearances it’s gonna look like I’ve got my life together and I’m wearing nice jeans, but underneath my shirt my belly rolls are breathing a sigh of relief and giving me a high five for being good to them.”
Aussie mums can relate
Mother-of-one Bek admitted she still owns a few maternity items because … “comfy”. I myself paused at the maternity undies in Target this week pondering whether they were just comfortable when pregnant, or could they still be a godsend four years post birth.
It’s not just clothes shopping either. Hobart mum Cassandra recalls walking up the street four days after having a caesarean and just sitting on a bench and crying. “My poor friend was totally at loss as to why I was being so fragile,” she recalled.
But as with many of life’s speed humps, it’s all worth it, as she says. With our little ones bringing us joy, all the grey hairs and mum tums aren’t really so bad in the big scheme of things.