Dear Bikini

Dear Bikini

I’m sorry, I have neglected you.  I even went on holiday last week and you didn’t even make it into the suitcase.

Tankini did, by the skin of her teeth, and swimsuit was the first to be packed.

You didn’t make it, because for some stupid reason, at the time of packing I thought I should cover my tummy up.

Because obviously the thin bit of lycra that swimsuit offers is far more appealing and hides all lumps and bumps.

Here is the really daft thing.

I love wearing you, I love getting a tanned (red) tummy, and I quite like my body.

It’s not a size 10, and I have stretch marks, and my love of fizz and cake is more apparent than my adoration of weight lifting and rowing.   But it is mine.

My kids don’t look at my tummy and think ‘jaysus woman, put it away,’ they just want me to get in the pool with you on.

It is probably more society that makes me think I should cover up, rather than dare to bear.  Growing up surrounded by signs for diet clubs, seeing the women in The Sun, and even now, reading headlines, screaming “get that bikini body” suggests that only women of a certain shape can wear a two piece by the pool.

Thing is – the older I get, the more I think that is horse poop.

Bikini you are coming when we go away next.  I am going to proudly show off the lines etching round my skin, because they grew there when I cleverly bred not one but two babies simultaneously.  The skin sages a little in places, to be fair, anyone who can hold over 12lbs worth of baby in their tummy and not sag from the pressure must have elasticated skin.

I can’t show off my abs but I have admiration for those who can.  I can show you a tummy that has carried four babies, and brought into the world three.  One that has been cut open twice, and had my muscles forcibly ripped apart, one that has created my most special things and deserves to get a little sun in the summer.

I’m bored with saying when I am slim I will get you out of the drawer.  Because waiting to be slim to do something seems really silly all of a sudden.

You and me bikini are going to show my children that beauty comes in all shapes and sizes, and this for now is my size.

Together we will rule the summer!

As long as the sun shines,

Love,

My tummy.

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