Monday, September 21, 2009
Like the Rainman, for years I bought my underwear at Kmart. There was just something anonymous about sliding them down the checkout hidden in between the Sauve shampoo and Scotts Weed N Feed. The 17 year old clerk working his after school job certainly wasn't paying any attention to how many X's were on the package of white cotton mid-raise underpants.
After I had started my weight loss journey and had actually lost about 20 lbs. I went to my mailbox one day and like millions of women across the United States opened it to see Harry Connick Jrs. wife, hugging herself while wearing nothing but a swatch of black lace, staring up at me. The card proclaimed the headline "FREE PANTY". It was of course from Victoria's Secret. Their semi-annual campaign hoping to get you in their store to redeem the free panty and leave the store with a pink striped shopping bag full of purchased "extras".
I picked up the phone and called my 7 month pregnant daughter as usual and told her that I had received her free panty card in the mail. With all seriousness she told me that she intended to burn all her underwear after getting that baby out. She asked why didn't I redeem it for myself. After all I had lost 20 lbs. She suggested I do what she was currently doing -- pick out a bikini style and wear it underneath the belly. Visions of my favorite uncle -- who had a HUGE german beer belly while he insisted on wearing his pants buckled under the gut so he could proudly tell everyone that he was a waist size 34 -- swam into my head.
So it was with some trepidation that I found myself at the mall entering the land of silk and satin. A cute salesclerk came over and asked if she could help me. I waved my free panty card and with a sad look on her face she said "Oooo, I am so sorry, but we are only sized to extra large, but we have some great fragrances if you'd like to try..." At that moment what I wanted to try was strangling her with the pink scarf that was artfully draped over her black silky smock! She may work for Victoria's Secret but she didn't know my secret plan. I found the selection of free panties -- all cotton in black, grey, white, or pink. I went to the counter with my ONE item and gave it to the clerk. Was that all, she inquired. Yep. That's it.
She dutifully spritzed it with fragrance,wrapped it in pink tissue paper, and placed it in my own Very Special sack.
I left the store holding my pink striped bag somewhat intrigued. Could I possibly wear some of those pretty things someday? Yes, I decided I could! Six months later and with another new free panty card in my hand I went back in and picked out a pink cotton string bikini in MEDIUM and added a few silky pair at considerably more cost than the Hanes Her Way from Kmart! Six months later I was back again trying to decide between the the SMALL and EXTRA SMALL black cotton thongs. I left the store with a hefty bag of silk, satin, bowed, and bejeweled panties -- strings, thongs, bikinis, and boyshorts.
And thus, my obsession with fancy undergarments was born! It was only a matter of time before I could use my new Very Special Angels Card and order right from the catalog -- and not just panties.
You see when I lost my weight, I found to my dismay that a goodly portion of it seemed to come from above the waist. Nothing short of a bank roll and general anesthesia was gonna fix that. Victoria's Secret to the rescue! One consultation with their "fitting expert" and I was restored to my former glory. My spouse grumbled about $48 for a bra. Hey! Not just any bra. The way I look at it, I told him, if I'm ever in a plane that goes down over a large body of water, I'm going to survive because I'm wearing my floatation device!! I even bought a special little chest of drawers just for my drawers!
I'm a nurse and wear a pair of tidy navy blue scrubs everyday to work, day in and day out, just like all the other nurses in my clinic. Not much room for individuality. But underneath them a daily rainbow of pastels, black, and red wisps of lace co-exist with the matching cleavage boosting brassier.
So you see ladies, there are more ways than just the scale to motivate and measure weight loss success --Just look in my "little chest of drawers" for inspiration!