They've Gotten Bigger, Those Things on My Chest

Image via WikipediaCommons

My sister no longer greets me with her customary, "You’re wearing my shirt." Now it's, "Jesus! Cover those things!" She can try on a blouse and look lovely and professional. I can try on the same blouse and look like it's going to pop the buttons off. I can no longer walk my dog in just a t-shirt and boxer shorts and expect to be invisible to passing motorists. Nope. I cause accidents. Not because fellas are gawking (maybe that too), but because I'm pretty sure my swaying sandbags cause wind gusts. 

To be frank, I've gotten bigger. I moved away from the southwest, where I had mountains to hike and bad boys to impress, and came to St. Louis, where the humidity makes a girl feel like she's walking through a lake. Go running? Ha!  Lemme suck on my asthma inhaler and settle back down on the porch. To make things worse, I landed in a neighborhood called The Hill, known for its authentic Italian restaurants on every corner. Oh! And I fell in love with a non-judgmental guy who likes to try new restaurants as much as I do. So, there's that. If happiness = heaviness, I'll take happiness.  

Finally, there's my recent diagnosis of hypothyroidism. Helloooo, Middle Age! I wondered why I was exhausted all the time. Why I suddenly felt sluggish, enormous, and practically ancient. I thought I needed a career change, but what I really needed was a blood test and a daily supplement.    

Read more:  When You're a Week Late and Middle Aged

All of this I could deal with. I'm around 40 after all, and I'm mostly comfortable with who I am. I can work out and eat out without feeling that burning obsession to be a size four. I prefer shadow-boxing and yoga to running anyhow. But as the extra weight naturally gathered around my waistline, made a comfy little home in my tummy, and expanded out around my backside, it also found two lovely vacation bungalows in my boobs.

My bras don't fit, my beloved Clash t-shirt doesn't fit, my button-up go-to-work blouses don't fit... and every time I see a picture of myself in a high-necked shirt, I cringe. I look like I'm wearing an overstuffed loveseat on a chain around my neck. 

So, last week I finally stopped avoiding the issue and went to get fitted for a new bra. I knew I wasn't a 36 anymore, so — maybe a 40?  And I assumed I was a D or double-D. I was wrong. I'm a G. A 38-G! G as in gobsmacked. G as in goddamn ginormous. My dreams of ever being waif-like tinkled to the floor like broken bra hooks. I am a big-breasted middle-aged hippie lady. 

The kind salesperson went out to gather a few bras in my real size, and I took a few deep breaths. I scolded that annoyingly shallow part of myself who constantly compares her body shape to others. I waved a final goodbye to my tomboyish, stick-shaped childhood self. Then, I called upon the spirit of my aunties, big-hearted, pear-shaped women who teach me every day how to accept myself and love unconditionally. I thought of all the coolest babes I know. Nearly all of them are body-accepting bad bitches who don't give a damn about their bra size, unless the straps start to pinch. 

Read more: I'll Come to Your Party but Don't Expect Me to Primp for It

As the salesperson hooked me up and turned me toward the mirror, I closed my eyes briefly, then looked.    

Oh!... Huh, OK, well, not so bad actually! 

I wasn't as... saggy. My shoulders weren't slumped. I could see that hourglass again instead of just boob-and-belly.  When I put my thin V-neck blouse on over the snug, black-lace bra, I looked... va-va-voom!   

After spending the necessary bucks to have two or three bras that fit, I tried out this new body shape of mine. I wore a sundress with a low neckline. I snort-laughed at the men who glanced at my tits and, instead of feeling that younger-me need to either flaunt or hide, I simply walked away with a slightly-straighter posture. 

What? It's a body. A body that is ready for ginormous living.


Holly Sinclair teaches young people in St. Louis, Missouri. She lives there with her faithful dog Gonzo and a hot lumbersexual named Chad.