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Bra Shopping For Us Big Boned Gals

Buying bras has always been an activity I dread.  Well, maybe dread is a strong word, but I never really look forward to it.  Even finally being able to afford new bras after being on an extremely tight budget and having worn the three bras I own to limp pieces, there was a fraction of "looking forward to it." Mostly it was with a heavy heart and a deep sigh that I approached the Nordstrom lingerie department.

Why is it such a chore?  When you have a rack like mine, which often doubles as a "snack tray" or "crumb catcher," it takes a sturdy piece of engineering to hold the ladies up and make them look nice at the same time.  I got measured, was presented with a size I didn't expect (smaller in the inches, bigger in the cup) and then began the hunt for this mysterious new size in the racks of ginormous bras.  For some reason I am always shocked at how large they look on the mini hanger at the store compared with how they look, all faded and flaccid in my underwear drawer at home.  But also they look huge because in my mind, I am not that big.  When you have lived with big boobs as long as I have, you get so used to them, they diminish in size in your mind. I started wearing a bra in 5th grade (that's about 10 or 11 years old), thanks very much. I guess the bras also look out of proportion on a rack, compared with how they look on your body.

The trying on process can also be a bit of an ego killer.  It's not like trying on clothes where even if something fits wrong, you just whip it off and try on something else.  With clothes, you have your underwear on (at least I hope you do) but with bras, you have to be naked, at least from the waist up. And if you (read: I) are not especially self-confident in this area, it can be really tough staring at every bump and roll. Plus there is the supremely unattractive maneuvers you have to do to get the thing on right and in place.  Wow, what a freak show it can be!  This is why I buy my bras at Nordstrom.  More expensive, yes, but the service and atmosphere are very soothing.

The woman helping me was great and she found most of the bras I tried on and kept coming back to check on fit or remove great piles of the "no thanks."  I found 4 I liked out of about 25 during the 45 minutes in the dressing room.  Yes, I tried on about 25 bras. I have to. They are like shoes or glasses, you must try them on to see if they fit right and are comfortable because you'll be putting them on every day.  I can't NOT wear a bra.  Well, I could, but no one needs to see that.  The bras I bought are not sexy, though they do have little bows on them.  They are Practical with a capital P and this makes me a little sad.  I used to be able to buy a large array of sexy bras, back when my cup and band sizes were both much smaller. There is an easy ("easy") remedy to this problem:  Lose weight.  I'm working on it.  But for now, I needed some new bras.

When I got home I told Kurt about the bra shopping and said how it would be nice to just be able to set them aside from time to time -- the boobs, not the bras. I get tired of them. He looked at my like I was crazy and said he never gets tired of them.  I'm so glad he feels that way, it's a really good thing to have in a husband!  He also said "There are women who would kill to have your boobs."  (There must be a Law & Order episode with this story line.)  I know, I know.  Grass is always greener and boobs are always smaller/bigger.  Some days I love them, if I'm wearing just the right thing and have just the right swagger, but those days are few and far between.  I look forward to more of those days in the future.  For today I am glad to be well supported.