Last week I installed (okay... Peter installed) a full-length mirror in our bathroom. It's been over a decade since I could see my reflection below the waist. None of my houses had a full-length mirror and, honestly, I didn't miss it. Shoulder height and above was fine with me.
The mirror hangs on the bathroom door so you can see yourself when you get out of the shower. The day after it was installed, I stepped out of the tub and scared myself. Who was this lumpy, dumpy, unattractive behemoth dripping all over my bath mat, looking back at me from the mirror?
Holy crap. That's me. Ugh.
Honey... I think we need to move that mirror.
When I graduated from high school I was 5'2" and weighed under 100 lbs. Now, nearly 23 years later I am 5'6" and... more than 100 lbs. A LOT more.
I was never the cute friend. I'm not looking for anyone to argue that fact and tell me I was... I know I wasn't. In the groups of three that I ran with (and there always seemed to be three) there was the beautiful friend, the sexy friend, and me. I'm not complaining, I got plenty of play. Some poor guy always had to take one for the team in his group of three, and that was usually me. I'd like to think that I made up for it with my sparkling personality but, the reality is probably more like they could burp and fart in front of me and I didn't get offended.
The sad fact is, I probably could have been the hot girl if I put a little effort in to it. I just didn't know how. It's not that I didn't care... I just couldn't be bothered with things like hair spray and push up bras. At that time in my life, there was nothing to push up. Which is why when I went bra shopping with my mother as a teenager and she saw what size I would wear she held it up and proclaimed, loudly, "Oh, Andrea. Why would you even bother?"
I was a child of the 80s and, when everyone else was sporting mall hair with bangs three inches above their heads, I had a super short pixie hair cut. Which is sad, really, since I could have had EPIC mall hair.
When everyone else was wearing neons and Benetton, I was wearing sloppy sweatshirts and black. Not 'cause I was goth (or whatever they called goth back then) but more because black went with everything and I didn't have to think about it. I guess I was (and am) fashion-lazy.
My sense of style, or lack thereof, carried over through the college years and beyond. XXL sweatshirts and jeans I could pull off without bothering to unbutton. I still have clothes from my 20s that fit me. Not because I'm the same size -- far from it. But because I always bought everything huge so I didn't have to try anything on. Lazy.
I look back at the Andrea of my youth and think -- maaaan. If I had that body now I would be naked All. The. Time. I wasn't sexy, but I sure was perky. I never appreciated it when I had it. Whatever "it" is.
The one time of the year that would change was Halloween. I LOVE Halloween. Absolutely adore it. It's the one time of the year you get to be whatever you want and what I wanted to be was slutty. Really, really slutty. Some of my memorable costumes include Lady Godiva (nude bodystocking and a long blonde wig. That's it.) A cabaret dancer (tuxedo jacket with no shirt, little tiny tap pants, fishnet stockings and sky high heels. I waited tables on that Halloween and let me tell you -- I made bank that night.) And then there's my favorite, the year I went as a dominatrix.
I was living in Grand Rapids, Michigan at the time and we were having a party that night. My friend and I had worked hard on our costumes, even getting our "accessories" from an S&M shop. I had on a lace up leather vest with only a Wonderbra underneath, teeny little leather mini-skirt, thigh highs and 4 inch heels. The handcuffs and choke chain with the key were a nice touch. I looked so good I had to call my Mom to let her know that, should something happen and I was arrested, I was NOT a prostitute -- it was my costume.
When I walked in and my best guy-friend asked me, after checking out my chest, where I'd been hiding those... I knew I had accomplished what I set out to do. One day a year, lose the sloppy sweatshirts and baggy jeans and get in touch with my inner tramp.
And now here I am... middle aged and two kids later and I wonder, "what the HELL happened???" I did okay after the first kid, back down to a size 6 at his 6-week check up. But things went seriously off the rails two years later when I had my daughter and I just never bounced back.
I look around at my friends who have popped out two, three, five kids and they all look great. And there's me. I mean... my friends are Princess Spice, Trendy Spice and me... Chubby Spice.
My man tells me every day, multiple times a day how beautiful he thinks I am. Unfortunately for him, I think he's (a) blind and (b) a chubby chaser. And sadly, his opinion doesn't even matter that much. See, women care what other women think. Guys... when we get all dressed up to go out... we're not doing that for you. We're doing that for the other girls in the joint. We want to compare ourselves to every other chick in the place and feel like we come out on top, at least the majority of the time.
And sadly, I never have. And, by the looks of things in that god-awful full-length mirror, I never will. See -- being skinny my whole life right up until I popped out kid #2 -- I have no idea how to diet. I don’t live on McDonald's and cheese but I also don't think I could subsist on a lettuce leaf and two bites of yogurt. I love to cook, and I love to eat. And if I suddenly had to give up eating well... you wouldn't want to be around me.
My laziness spreads out into other areas of my life too. I know I should exercise. I just don't want to. It seems like so much work and really... if I had that much extra time I'd rather go take a nap. Plus, I don't like sweating. And the thought of someone seeing me huffing along trying to jog as everything wiggles and jiggles makes me shudder. And sure, there are exercise videos that I could do in the privacy of my own home but really... if I'm going to watch TV I think I could find something better... like an E! True Hollywood Story.
So here I sit on my big dimply behind writing to you, dear Reader. I am, most definitely, not a MILF and I'm trying to be okay with that. But first... I really think we need to move that mirror.