Moms Can Wear Bikinis, End of Story.
As I left the pool today – with a cover-up over my bikini, all 4 kids (ages 6 years down to 4 months) in tow, I received a message to write about THIS. At first I didn’t understand. How can anyone possibly shame a new mom? It happened – and probably happens more than we know. A new mom – just 4 months postpartum was spoken down to at her local Missouri pool. The mom was enjoying her time when a woman approached her to chat about her baby. Everything was fine until the woman told her that “the men at the pool would feel more comfortable if [she] was in a one-piece swim suit because a bikini isn’t appropriate for a mother, especially one who’s still recovering.”
JAW.DROP. Again, I am leaving the pool IN MY BIKINI while pushing a double stroller, packed to the brim with crap the kids need to survive at the pool. I had not only spent the afternoon in the sun wearing my ‘scandalous’ swim attire, but I had just had my entire right breast exposed to the world while breastfeeding my 4 month old. I have been doing this all summer. Maybe I am naïve, but I believe in “The Village,” the ability to trust others for support, and the promise to love my own body after giving birth.
I have been at the pool every day of summer, 98% of the time without my husband – but with my four little ones. Not only do I have a killer tan, but I’ve been able to work under the umbrellas thanks to wifi. When I walk in, I am instantly greeted by at least 1-3 fellow moms who want to hold my littlest one or help me get all the kids in the water. There wouldn’t be a point in joining the pool if I didn’t have this community. EVERY mother deserves this treatment.
We are already self-conscious. We have zero time to blow dry our hair or apply makeup. You think we have had time to shop for an amazingly flattering swimsuit so that someone else can think that we look good? AHHAHAHHAHAHHHAA… You think we have time to care?
If I have learned anything since having children, it is that I am AMAZING (yes, I’m tooting my own horn). I have birthed and breastfed (still breastfeeding) 4 babies. I have stretch marks and my boobs are -ummm- well, they are kind of still there?! But it does not matter. What matters is that I AM AT THE POOL. I am there with my kids - splashing, playing, laughing, living MY LIFE.
This is what I want you to know. Do not hide away – do not hide your body. You are NORMAL. There is no magazine cover truth to your summer at the pool, nor should there be. It is time for moms to stop worrying about everyone else around them and focus solely on motherhood.
Take a tip from all of my bikini-wearing mom friends and throw on whatever bathing suit covers enough of you to be happy - and able to jump into the deep end and save your drowning child. In the end, all that matters is your happiness, and a fun day at the pool.