There’s a hilarious and right-up-to-the-line of inappropriate viral video about moms and swimsuits out there this week. It’s hilarious because it is true.
Most swimsuits out there just aren’t designed for a normal mom who wants to have a normal day at the beach (i.e., swimming, chasing kids, fixing lunches, changing diapers, moving around and not sitting still like some Victoria’s Secret model wannabe…)
Guys wear board shorts. Women are expected to wear garments that could fit into a greeting card envelope.
But do you know what? It doesn’t have to be this way. We decide, ladies!
That’s why I’m making peace with the mommy swimsuit.
You know the one. It’s a one-piece or a tankini. The leg openings are low; the back is high. Industrial support comes built in: underwire, tummy slimmer, Spanx. It might even have a skirt.
It is the mommy swimsuit, and if you have kids, you know exactly what type of swimwear I am talking about.
Perhaps you’re like me, trying to figure out how to wear a mommysuit with pride and not a slinking self-hatey shame that says, “This is my life now. I wipe noses and bottoms and don’t sleep ever and wear a swimsuit straight out of 1922 and even though I workout four times a week I look like a mom because I am a mom.”
Take heart, dear mommy friends.
Here are five reasons to make your peace with the mommysuit as we head into the summer aquatic season.
1. Water is for playing
You know that look of unbridled joy a 3-year-old gets when you bring them to the beach? Ever see that on an adult woman? Rarely-if-ever, right?
But here’s the thing: water is fun. And it’s way easier to have fun if you aren’t worried about keeping all the things covered while you play.
2. Playing is easier when you can forget about how you look
I can still wear a bikini if I want. I’m not Quasimodo, I am not ashamed of my body, and there’s no law against showing a stretch mark or two.
I even own a couple of them, since we live in California. (And I’m a pastor! Shocking, I know!)
But whenever I wear a bikini I turn into Barbie.
Not because I become 7-feet tall and plastic with a tiny waist (those days are long gone), but because in a bikini I become automatically vacant, rigid, and emotionally absent.
I stop being all, “Let’s order pizza poolside!” and start being all, “No, thanks, I’m going to sip this water with cucumber because if I eat more than seven calories I might look like I’m halfway through the second trimester of a phantom pregnancy.”
In a mommysuit, you can forget about how you look.
Do you want your kids to remember how even your tan was or how much you laughed together? It’s no contest, really.
3. There are cute, trendy, modest one-pieces out there
Seriously. Google it.
4. Vanity is overrated
On our flight home from Nashville I wore skinny jeans with running shoes. I didn’t mind the running shoes, but with skinny jeans? I felt sooooo dorky.
Yet the luggage was on the verge of being overweight, so I changed out of my cute sandals and into the running shoes to save two pounds in our suitcase. Then I asked my husband to tell me that no one cared about my shoes. Then I asked him to tell me that same thing eight more times.
I struggled with it. I really did. Skinny jeans with running shoes is a pet peeve. I felt like a nerd who got dressed in the dark. I spent way too much time caring about my shoe/pant combo.
Motherhood has humbled me in a thousand ways, and you know what? I’ve needed it. Anyone who would obsess about their shoes that much while trying to schlep two small children across the country is someone with whom God clearly isn’t finished yet.
I’m a work in progress, and breaking down my vanity is a project for Jesus. Luckily he’s up for the task.
The mommysuit? It’s good for my soul.
5. No one actually cares what you look like in a swimsuit anyway
Your friends like you. Your kids adore you. Your spouse/partner/special friend thinks you’re the bee’s knees.
Stop trying to impress the world and go play at the beach. If bikinis are your jam, wear yours with pride. If the mommysuit buys you some flexibility and grace, put it on.
Either way, I hope you enjoy the water this summer with your kids. You’ll be glad you did.
Will you be wearing a mommysuit this summer?
Why or why not? Tell us more!