Why exactly are we calling a bikini a fatkini?

I love fashion blogs.

I know this may surprise you, considering how much I say I love pajama pants.

But the truth is, I love fashion.

Not in the “Sex in the City” kind of way, but more like in the “fashion is self expression” kind of way.

Because to me, that’s what fashion is: the ability to express who you are in a personal and meaningful way.

Reading fashion blogs allows me to envision myself dressed in the styles of the lovely ladies whose fashion sense I admire.

I’m inspired to try fashion trends like floral jeans, peplum tops, and neon colors.

And when I spot a fashion trend I don’t have the courage to try, I live vicariously through the daring women who step out in style and blog about it.

Now that summer is here, I’m delighted to see many of my favorite fashion bloggers sporting bikinis.

I am especially pleased to see many women showing off their curves, undaunted by the fact that they don’t have what society deems a “bikini ready body.”

These women, confident in their skin and convinced they are beautiful, are my heroes.

They are who I look up to as I continue on the journey to lose my insecurities and feel comfortable in the body I am in.

Gabi Gregg is one of the fashion bloggers I admire.

She has recently been making waves with a bikini post that has gone viral.

Fearless, beautiful, and self confident, she is truly a sister worth emulating.

When I first saw Gabi’s bikini post, I cheered.

But not before I swooned when I saw her gorgeous vintage inspired two piece.

For the first time in twenty one years after giving birth to the Son, I envisioned myself wearing something similar to Gabi’s two piece.

However, there was something in Gabi’s post that burst my bubble: the fact that she called her bikini a “fatkini.”

A fatkini?

Really?

I was disappointed at what appeared to be another example of labeling.

Fatkini.

The term alone implies that it’s a two piece for fat women.

It would appear that “bikini” as in, a two piece suit, seems insufficient for full figured women, and thus, it is necessary to create a more literal term.

This makes me wonder why some women feel the need to adopt terms like “fatshion,” or “fatkini.”

Is it because we find that it sets us apart from the skinny girls; that it award us our own little club or clique?

If you ask me, terms like these only serve to make a distinction between those who are fat and those who aren’t.

In her recent post, Gabi promotes a clip of her appearance on the Today show.

In the interview, she’s asked if she thinks she’s promoting obesity and an unhealthy lifestyle.

Gabi replies, “I’m not promoting obesity or a healthy lifestyle. I think people should be aware of what they’re putting in their bodies and be more active. The truth is be happy with your bodies we have right now.”

While I found Gabi’s answer to be acceptable, I wanted to hear a different reply.

I wanted to hear her question why it is that when fat women wear a bikini, it’s seen as way to promote obesity, but when thin, emaciated women grace the covers of fashion magazines, it’s not seen as a way of promoting eating disorders.

I wanted to hear that being fat doesn’t necessarily equate being unhealthy, the same way that being thin doesn’t automatically signify being healthy.

I wanted to hear that women wearing bikinis, regardless of their size, are just that, women in bikinis.

I find that if we really want to empower women and promote self confidence, we have to lose the labels.

The word fat used to induce fear.

Anyone daring to use it was crossing the line, being offensive, being politically incorrect.

Fortunately, many fat people are battling the word’s negative stigma saying, “We’re fat and so what?”

Nevertheless, is it really necessary to label ourselves fat?

After all, it’s not like skinny people walk around saying, “My name is so and so and I’m skinny.”

The way I see it, any woman, regardless of her size or shape, should feel free to wear whatever she wants and feels comfortable in.

Without having to rename a bikini a “fatkini.”

And surely without having to affirm, “I’m a fat girl in a bikini.”

It should simply be enough to say, “I’m a woman in a bikini.”

Enough said.

How do you feel about the term “fatkini”?

Who wants churros with their coffee?

The other day I tweeted that I’d renounced eating sugary carbs for the rest of the summer.

I lied.

I didn’t lie intentionally.

I tweeted that statement in good faith.

Good faith which exited the building the minute the waiter placed this plate of churros in front of us.

Churros-Long strips of fried dough coated with sugar

This leads me to conclude that my mom is evil.

She’s intent on sabotaging any shred of will power I have left.

“It’s ridiculous to swear off carbs while you’re in Spain. Stop being silly and set another goal,” she says.

Substitution has been one of my mother’s strategies for as long as I can remember.

I say, “I need to consume less sodium in my diet,” and she counters with “Salt is necessary. Chew some Gas X tablets and you won’t feel bloated.”

“We have to stop drinking Coke. It’s bad for us.”

“So is harsh sunlight, but I don’t see us moving into a cave any time soon.”

Yes, she’s a born saboteur.

That’s why I eyed her suspiciously when she ordered the churros.

“What? They’re not for you.”

Yeah, right.

The minute the hot, fried golden sticks made their way to our table, I was a goner.

And this saddens me.

It makes me doubt my resolve; my will to resist temptation.

“Mom, I’m not eating churros. I already told you that.”
“You’re not eating churros, no matter what the circumstances?”
“What do you mean?”
“I mean, if Javier Bardem were dressed in nothing but an apron and volunteered to finger feed those to you, you’d say no?”

My hesitation is all she needs to continue.

“In other words, Javier can feed you churros, but your mother can’t.”
“You’re not a sexy Spanish actor with bedroom eyes.”
“And Javier didn’t carry you in his belly for nine months, spend 23 hours in labor, and suffer through an episiotomy.”

Guilt.

Another one of my mother’s favorite strategies.

And today it works.

Besides, I can almost hear the churros whispering, “Bella…”

So I take a bite, promising myself that today’s the last day I’ll consume sugary carbs.

I think.

I hope.

I can always swim ten extra laps.

We’ll see.
Do you have a weakness for carbs?

Have you seen these underpants?

Hello ladies!

Today I want to share another one of my early posts.

One that I feel or hope, will resonate with a lot of you.

I say hope because I truly cannot endure the thought that I’m alone in the quest to find the perfect pair of underpants.

That said, I give you:

Have you seen these underpants?


cc licensed flickr photo shared by whizchickenonabun

I have lost count of how many times I’ve walked into a department store full of hope, lowered expectations, and a wad full of cash ready to fork over for the right pair of underpants.

Forget the Spanx and other contraptions that promise to give you a smooth, no-line, shapely look.

We all know that no matter what, these just end up making us look like a badly encased sausage.

(And lets not forget the pulled muscles, torn ligaments and strained backs that have resulted from trying to wrestle all of our human meat into them.)

The underpants I’m talking about are delicate, non-constraining, made of soft organic cotton, without frills, but don’t look like a parachute.

They’re as elusive as the holy grail, but that doesn’t prevent me from trying to find them.

Time and time again, I relinquish my money and gently carry the bag home that holds the pair that might be “The One.”

The minute I walk through the door, I carefully open the bag to unveil my latest discovery.

I then quickly peel off all my clothes and put them on.

At first, the results seem promising.

The color is perfect.

The material is baby soft and my crotch appears to breathe without the help of a medical device.

However, the minute I squat, I know something is wrong.

As I glance at myself in the full length mirror (which I have to say, makes me a very brave woman,) I notice the waistband of the underpants has disappeared.

Where the heck has it gone?

And voila!

One turn in the mirror provides the answer.

My belly has literally gobbled it up.

Sadly, I remove the offensive garment, throw it in the ever-growing pile of rejects, and pour myself a glass of wine.

In all my naked glory I make a toast for what could have been, but alas, was not.

I hold my glass high and make another toast.

“The fight isn’t over,” I shout.

“I’m still on the quest and I shall find you!”

Half a bottle of wine later, I sit down at my desk and inscribe the brand, model, size, color and the store where the useless underpants were purchased.

I notice how the list now holds 535 entries; entries which trigger awful, but funny memories.

Entries like:

Entry #17-Animal print lycra-Gave me welts that almost required medical attention.

Entry #103- Hot pink lace-Literally tore the second they went past my knees.

Entry #165-Red cotton thong-Gave me a wedgie so painful, they forced me to tug at them in public, only to realize a minute later that the handsome stranger standing behind me at the supermarket, had witnessed the entire process.

Entry #178-Neon green mesh-Nearly cut off the blood flow to my femoral artery.

Yes, the right pair of underpants is as mythical as a unicorn and yet, I push on.

Sword drawn, teeth barred, and determination in my stance.

I surge forward.

Because ladies, lets face it.

The right pair of underpants is out there and if located, we sisters know we shall worship at the altar of the woman who finds them.

Any takers to join me on this quest?