Thursday, January 20, 2011

Retail Therapy: Why in all likelihood I will now need therapy (A true story)

I bought my last pair of bathers about 3 years ago. You know what I have been wearing to the beach lately? My gym shorts and a singlet. Not good for the ego. So, Dave and I decided to brave the post-Christmas sales so that I could get some new bathers.

(Wait, should I be unpacking boxes, or finding the toilet paper or something?...Meh. Anyway, bathers.)

We went to a few department stores with no luck, and ended up in a surf store. (I know what you're thinking, BAD MOVE!) I disappeared into the fitting rooms with a few clothing items and sufficeth to say, I left the shopping centre in tears.

My lovely husband reassured me that I am beautiful and not overweight, and reminded me that many clothing stores design clothes for a body type only a small percentage of the female population naturally has. Then he said, "You know this already. You tell me this."

It's a funny thing, after having my first two children, I returned to my previous weight within a matter of months, but after my third child, I haven't....and I feel the need to admit this almost apologetically, like I should say "But I will, soon," or provide a reasonable excuse as to why I have not bounced back before hitting the one year mark.

Today, I had some free time (what's that, right?) so I was browsing through a local op-shop. My shopping 'standards' have changed since I got married...and poorer. When I was single (for that whole 4 months or something, haha) I was a bit pickier, and thought I was too good for shops like Big W and Kmart. Time has passed and now I will almost take anything.

My op shop standards are that it must look vaguely decent for starters, a good brand name or store is helpful but not essential, however- it must not have a tag inside that reads "Crossroads", "Veryberry", "Girlpower" or anything else stupid, and it must not be bigger than a size 12. This is just a weird mental issue I have. It's not that anyone would even know if I bought something in a bigger size. It would require me to acknowledge that I am now heavier than usual. I would rather go without than buy a piece of clothing that fits and is larger than a size 12. I've always been about a size 10-12,so to shift now would require me to shift my whole perception of myself.

Here is where I would typically include some kind of rant about stupid ideal body types and how I want to be happy with and accepting of my body. Hypocritical much?

I want to develop a healthy body image, which I have never really had- but all I can think about is, once I am skinny, I'll develop a healthy body image.

Still working on it.


  1. Im going to say this as nicely as possible and with as much love as possible... I believe your thoughts on body image might change if you developed an auto-immune disease and put on 20kg in a year without any choice in the matter! I totally get that all girls have body issues. I was exactly the same before getting ill. I thought I was big and ugly and huge and horrible as a size 10. Now I spend a small fortune on doctors and other health practitioners, medication, natural remedies and all sorts just trying to feel normal, and not like a sick mutated freak, that I honestly couldnt care what I weigh. I look back and really wish someone had smacked me in the head and made me realize how lucky I was! Some day I would like to get down to my pre-illness weight, but to be honest, just being able to wake up and function in the morning is a blessing.

    The irony is, a lot of women with my disease would kill for your post-baby weight Caitlin. Considering one of the million side effects is infertility. I dont know if I will ever be able to have children. I dont say this to make you feel guilty, not at all, because I know exactly where you are coming from!! Im just saying that maybe... just maybe... swimsuits that dont fit isnt the worst thing in the world?

    Avoid places that make you feel bad about yourself, and start rocking stores that support a healthy body image! Stop reading fashion magazines. Stop reading celebrity gossip websites that speculate on who has an eating disorder this week, and take control! Reject the fashionable notion that because you are a girl you must hate yourself. Be a force for positivity in the world, you have the strength and the power and the intellect and the skill, and definitely the writing ability to get it down on paper (or on the web)... what are you waiting for?

    All Im trying to say is... love yourself. NOW. With those 12kg. Before it's too late. Nobody is going to come along and give you permission to love yourself, you need to take that and own it, it's yours if you do. Visit and look up her viewpoints on radical self love. The time is now.

    Much love and happiness,
    Mia xxx

  2. Thank you for your kindness Mia.

    I feel stupid because I am someone who is well aware of how toxic our beauty/fashion/sex culture can be for women and girls, and I want to change this...but despite this, I am not immune to it! It is so frustrating that I can still allow myself to be affected by it. I have plenty of good days now when I am happy with who I am trying to be and acknowledge that I am much more than my body, or my appearance, as are we all.

    But I feel like if I am being honest, while I am sticking it to popular culture, the media, the pornography and fashion industries, then I need to admit that I do have these feelings sometimes- and harden my resolve to overcome them and get my priorities straight.

    I know that I am very fortunate in many ways- I have a healthy, functioning body, I have loved ones, I have beautiful children I would die for. I am very blessed, and sometimes I forget that amidst the craziness of life.

    For me, I try to remember that what makes people beautiful comes from a lot more than their outward appearance. I am striving to be a kind, more selfless person, and that means more than my dress size.

    I wish you all the very best with your health Mia xxx


About this blog