Not in the John Mayer ode to Jennifer Love Hewitt kind of way. More like the old, broken down racetrack in Revere kind of way. This sad reality came to me yesterday as I was trying to pull some Spanx up over my fat a**. I have put most of the weight back on that I lost last year and I refuse to buy new clothes. I am kind of shaming myself into losing it again. Let's get one thing straight...I know that I have never had the physique of a supermodel but I did start my last decade off looking pretty good. I am not ashamed to admit I had some "work done" a month after I turned 30. I was still single and thought why not. 9 years and 2 kids later the surgery is a distant memory. I will forever hold over my children's head the devastation they have caused my body.
Many years ago I was with some friends getting ready for a night out on the town. One of the girls was changing into a dress for the occasion. Fully clothed she had an average looking, normal body. Well she unzipped her pants and all of the sudden this misshapen, deflated, discolored thing came flying out. Kind of like when a plane crashes and the door opens and the slide automatically inflates..like that. I was horrified. I was still single and childless I had no idea what I was seeing. What the eff was that? Where did all of the flesh come from? She looked so normal. I was pretty disturbed the rest of the night. I could not get that image out of my eyes. It was like it was burnt into my corneas forever. What I did not know then was that I was getting a glimpse into my future...
I got pregnant with my first child and was so excited to get my belly. It came fast. I was in full on maternity clothes by 7 weeks. If any of you had the pleasure of seeing me pregnant. I was ENORMOUS!! In my head I was this super cute pregnant lady with a cute little belly. Not true. If you tipped a VW bug up end to end that was me. Literally. I was the size of an actual VW bug. I could have painted my body all one color, gone to a VW dealership, laid down in a parking spot amongst the other bugs and car shoppers would have walked by me without missing a beat.
I got pregnant again when Sara was a little over a year old. Again, maternity clothes came early. All right, truth be told I never got out of them. I just had to buy bigger sizes with my second pregnancy. Due to a complication I needed to have open abdominal surgery when I was 18 weeks pregnant. The incision was from my belly button on down. So as the scar was trying to heal my belly was still growing. I had Anna and my belly deflated. As it did the scar kind of turned in on itself. Add two c-sections to that surgery and my belly never recovered. I now have what I refer to as a "front bum". Yes, you got it, I have an ass in front. If I took a picture from the front and one from the back, laid them side by side you would be hard pressed to tell one from the other. Or, you know those hand drums that kids play with... the ones you put between your two hands and roll back and forth really fast? Yeah, if you had a picture of me on the front and back and started rolling it really fast it would make your head spin. Is she coming or going? Butt, belly, butt, belly, butt, belly. Oh wait? Or is it belly, butt, belly, butt, belly ,butt?
My girls love to lift my shirt up and squish my belly together and laugh really hard at my "butt". Nice, huh? I always lovingly remind them that they did this to me. Oh, yeah, I am one of those moms....
Like that girl from the party years ago most people would never know about my secret. I look kind of normal to the general public. There are creative ways to tuck it in. Yes, I said tuck it in. I have to tuck it into my pants just like you would a long shirt. How is that for a visual. Thank god for tummy tuck jeans. Yes, there is such a thing. Google it. None of you will ever look at me the same. Out in the open it is kind of looks like an apron...Chuck's description...not mine. Three doctors have told me the only way to get rid of it is through surgery. I am not opposed to that and apparently neither is my husband. We have this weird credit card we got when the cat was sick. It is just for veterinarians, eye doctors and plastic surgeons. Weird combo, but maybe if you fix your eyes you will see you are as big as a cow and you will want a tummy tuck? Well, one time I was complaining about my skin apron and without missing a beat Chuck said that there was a plastic surgeon in Peabody that accepted Care Credit. Not sure if I should have been offended or touched that he had already done his research...the jury is still out on that one.
A few weeks ago I was driving the girls to see their cousin. Sara said, "hey mom did Becky have her baby a year ago?" I said yes. She said, "well, you had Anna TWO years ago, why isn't Becky fat like you". I did lose a bunch of weight last year thanks to Weight Watchers. Sara my ever supportive child had a comment on that too. I went to my first meeting and before I went she was asking me where I was going. I told her I was going to learn how to eat healthy so my belly would not be so squishy. I came home from that first meeting and Sara asked if I went to Weight Watchers. I told her I did, she poked my belly and said, "oh, it didn't work"....
In an effort to try and make you feel better people try to say that stretch marks etc. are a badge of honor or battle scars you earn by being a mom. To hell with that, those platitudes usually come from either someone who hasn't had a baby or worse yet one of those freaks of nature who has and has not one stretch mark to show for it...I think if I were to go out and fight in an actual war my body would not have suffered quite as much and I would have an actual badge of honor to show for it.
My greatest fear is that I am going to be that girl. You know the one that a young, impressionable, childless woman catches a glimpse of as I change my clothes. I don't want to burn anyone's corneas. But, truth be told I am their future, they just don't know it yet.
PS: To all my friends that are pregnant with their first babies, I am sure this won't happen to you...your bellies will be exempt. Just keeping rubbing in the cocoa butter I am sure that will help.
Oh, and if you are wondering if you are the girl from the party... You are not. She is someone from the distant past that would not be reading my blog.
I was recently in Providence and the shortest route for me would be to drive down Waterman Street. I didn't. I took the long way. I did not have the guts to drive by Dr. Barrall's office. What if he caught a glimpse of me? Would he be disappointed that my "before" surgery picture looks BETTER than I do now. Now that I think about it I should have driven by....maybe he takes care credit.
So thinking about it maybe my life is a John Mayer song after all...instead of it being Wonderland I guess my new song by him is Daughters.