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Thursday, November 10, 2005

About a week and a half after Riley was born my scale informed me that the blood pressure diuretics, fistfuls of Colace, and the surgical removal of a tiny human from inside my body had all contributed to a 30-pound weight loss. Hooray! I thought, all my old clothes will fit now! Then I tried them on, and realized that despite my return to a pre-pregnancy weight, my body had somehow rearranged itself into a new and non-jeans-fitting shape.

I chalked this up to postpartum swelling, and for a while attempted to get by on maternity pants. While I relished the feeling of something actually being too big for me, pretty soon they just looked ridiculous. Then I wore two pairs of Old Navy capris that are made of cheap cotton and therefore stretch a good size or two just from sitting down, until it became, you know, October and the weather turned wet and cold and windy. Not so much a Pacific Northwest autumn staple, capris.

Also, I could no longer blame my midsection on postpartum anything, unless there is a grave medical disorder known as "postpartum cookie-eating", and if so, someone needs to start a telethon because I HAVE A DISEASE.

I missed having a pair of jeans that didn't threaten to wrap my internal organs around my spinal column if I did anything while wearing them other than take one constant inhale, so I visited Old Navy where I tried on several pairs of size 10 - my largest pre-Riley size - pants. Which didn't fit. Like, at all.

In desperation I bought a pair of size 12 jeans, and wore them exactly once only to receive the following comment from JB: "Those pants look...funny." As I may have mentioned once or twice on this website, JB is not known for his attention to detail when it comes to my personal fashion accouterments, and so I concluded that the jeans, while not uncomfortable, were doing weird and unflattering things to the lower half of my body, and so they were banished to the dark and unspeakable corner of my closet where all bad clothing goes to die before eventually being taken to Goodwill in order to torture some other innocent soul who was just trying to find one decent pair of pants for chrissake.

So! To recap: over two months post-birth, no pants that fit. Awesome.

Next I bought a pair of size 12 Levis. I wasn't happy about wearing a size 12, but you can't magically erase the effects of weeks of low activity (there is some serious horseshit in the tabloids about how Britney Spears is losing weight because she's "running around after her baby" - all by herself! First of all, if you're running after a newborn, it's because you dropped him down a flight of stairs. Young babies? Not ambulatory. Also, you know she has a damn fleet of nannies) combined with the retail abundance of the Halloween mini KitKat bar overnight, despite my fervent hope that science will someday prove otherwise.

The Levis seemed to fulfill my quest for a non-lethal denim fit, until I wore them for a couple days and they expanded to fit not only my own ass but also possibly a secondary, backup ass. I'm not necessarily opposed to redundancy but seeing as how I only have the one ass for now, I tried washing the jeans on hot to shrink them, but they remained saggy and required a near-constant hitch in order to keep the crotch from sliding down and hindering my ability to 1) look cool and 2) walk.

Yesterday I bought the exact same pair of jeans, size 10. I got home, squeezed myself into them, and immediately performed a series of moves I like to call "Let The Fat Stretch The Pants": bending at the waist, squatting, and pretending to eat a plate of fettucine. And now they fit. Thank you jesus, I have one pair of jeans I can wear. Let us offer a prayer of thanks for the Levis 515 Boot Cut "Just Below Waist" style.

I tell you all that to tell you this: I got my period today. No, there's a segue here, I promise. I got my period for the first time in 11 months, and while I feel all out of shape and my stomach is scarred and flabby and there is no bra on earth that can revitalize my, erm, décolletage, I also feel like my body has done something absolutely extraordinary and amazing and miraculous in the last year, and to see that my internal workings have reset themselves - like some complicated machine having run through its paces and starting all over again - it's, I don't know, a little humbling, and how can you hate something that is capable of so much?

Although I will say this: I am not shopping for bathing suits anytime soon.


And now is the time for the cute baby photo:

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