This weekend we’re making the annual trek out to Plymouth, Mass for E’s aunt & uncle’s 4th of July party. There will be hamburgers. There will be beer. There will be fireworks. And there will be A POOL. Which means tonight before dinner I headed out to find a bathing suit.

BATHING SUITS OMG JUST HAD A BABY NO WAY NO WAY STRETCH MARKS WEIRD STOMACH POOCH SPANDEX HORRORS BLINDINGLY PALE SO AWFUL ALERT THE BIKINI POLICE AND READY THE JAWS OF LIFE!!!!11!1!!!

Actually, it was the least unpleasant bathing suit shopping ever. I tried on three. They all fit ok. One looked the best and was in a nice color and a halter style that will allow me to breastfeed. It was $25. I bought it.

Did I mention it’s a one piece? The last time I shopped for a one piece was for church camp (apparently belly buttons are the gateway to Satan) in 8th grade. Since then I’ve spent the first two months of every summer searching in vain for an affordable, flattering bikini. One year I bought a dozen cheap ones at Wal-Mart and just threw a sarong over the bits that didn’t fit right. One year I spent $100 on a very nice orange bikini with a bandeau top – and spent my time at the beach wishing I could go body surfing without flashing all of South Carolina. I’ve tried ordering them online. I’ve tried the special bathing-suit-stores. I’ve tried on literally hundreds and hundreds of suits in the past decade. But I never considered just buying a one piece. Those are for old people or my mom.

But now I am a mom. I have a three month old baby and a three month post-partum body. I could use a little extra material in my swim wear. And maybe some ruching. And a hidden control panel. And a nice flattering criss-crossy pattern. Anything short of a full body wet suit is going to expose some flaws and imperfections and the old Suzanne, the 22 year old who ate half a Powerbar for lunch and plain lettuce for dinner and hated every part of herself between her chin and her knees, that Suzanne would be dreading everything about this pool and beach filled weekend. But the cliches about how you learn to love and appreciate your body after pregnancy are true. I GREW A PERSON. I am currently keeping that person alive using only my boobs. That is way cooler than a bikini any day.

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