So for this week’s it’s-about-me-this-week challenge, I decided to clean my underwear draw, and buy some new lingerie. Thought it might be just the thing to get the “love my body” thing underway.
The Lingerie Draw
Since university—while living on spaghetti and adrenaline—I’ve had a draw full of beautiful, expensive lingerie. It cusped on obsession. And this was before the Victoria Secret took the world by storm.
In my twenties, I swore up, down and sideways that unless it had to do with period-panties, I would NEVER, ever wear cotton undies.
I would hand wash the underwear, fold it precisely and set it lovingly in the draw. There were always lavender bags scattered throughout to give a lovely fresh scent. It felt delicious every time I opened the draw.
When I first got married, it was incredibly fun to parade out the bra and panty sets. Sometimes in the morning, I would ask my husband, “Which set would you like to see on me tonight?” Knowing he would go to work and daydream about the underwear.
Then I got pregnant with our first child. The little wisps of lace panties quickly stopped fitting properly. I’m too pragmatic to buy expensive underwear to keep up with my temporarily expanding body, so I bought a ten pack of cotton pregnancy underwear.
After my son was born, my body had changed shape. Most notably, my already tiny breasts became saggy-raisins (ugh!) and most of my beautiful bras no longer fit. Slowly and with much angst, I started to toss them in the garbage. I started buying more cotton underwear because it was more convenient to wash and wear with a little baby.
Since baby #2, my once pristine underwear draw is now a dumping place. No gentle wash. No precise folding. No scented satchels. I take the underwear straight from the laundry hamper and dump it into the draw. Every time I open the draw, my guts clench because it’s such a mess.
Can the Underwear be a Metaphor?
Not to read too much into this, but I would say the underwear draw is a perfect metaphor for how I feel about myself and my body sexually.
I used to take care of myself and take pride in my appearance. Now feel I’m doing well by not walking out the door in a ratty pair of sweatpants.
Buying Underwear Should Be a Fun Experience
Went shopping for the underwear…with my two children. Bad idea. Very bad idea indeed. As my toddler lunged at each and every bra rack, I didn’t really have a chance to get a good look. Grabbed something that looked my size.
Got Home and Looked in the Mirror…
Got home and tried it on. It was difficult looking at myself in the mirror. At first I thought it was because I’m still a few pounds over my normal weight and look marshmallow soft.
But I realized while trying on the bra—while simultaneously picking crusty snot off my breast from where my newborn was feeding, and listening as my toddler excitedly pointed out, “There’s mummy’s vulva!”—that I’ve got a weird asexual mommy vibe happening.
In the end…
The bra didn’t fit well and the panties were too tight and scratchy—or maybe the panties did fit well but I’m now used to how cotton panties stretch.
So this week’s challenge was almost a bust. I did clean up my underwear draw, and it felt good to open it and not see mess. Maybe this is the first step in the slow process of feeling sexual again.
My husband’s rating on the underwear
Was so discouraged while trying on the underwear that I half-hazardly tossed it into a nearby laundry basket (and promptly forgot about it). My husband, naturally, found it. Came and happily asked, “Did you do that on purpose? Just so I could find it ‘by accident’.” Men! Never did end up doing a fashion show for my husband. Too insecure.