Saturday, March 20, 2010

Feeling Hot. Or Not.

There is nothing I'd rather spend my Saturday evening doing than trying on clothes under fluorescent lights in Target while listening to various children scream or cry around the store. Especially when I'm pale and splotchy and flabby. You know how flattering fluorescent lights can be. A treat, really. I'm considering installing them in front of every mirror in my house.

Pregnancy hasn't been very bothersome so far - sure, the random nausea and hanging out with the toilet gets old, and, yes, I could probably do without the pain in *ahem* certain places, but honestly? It's not enough to make me want to do this again.

In the past week, though, my belly has grown to a point that makes about 80% of my wardrobe unwearable. Maybe that's dramatic. Whatever. On Thursday morning, I tried a dozen shirts on before settling on a plain brown American Apparel t-shirt with an open cardigan. Empire waist shirts? Make my belly look HUGE (something I'm not quite ready for as I still haven't told most of the teachers at school. I still have issues with thinking I'll have a miscarriage. Which are issues to talk about another time. Or not at all,  really, since it's depressing.) Don't even talk to me about button up blouses. I think our days are over for a few months.

My body is basically that of a curvy 12-year-old. I am small. As in, I didn't weigh enough to give blood until now. As in, XS petite bottoms and XXS petite tops in the women's non-junior's section. My chest has always been small, too. Everyone else in college was going to Victoria's Secret and coming back exclaiming, "I'm a C! What!? I've been wearing an A!!!" I went and they told me I was a 32A. (Which? Totally not. I tried one on and couldn't move or breathe. Basically a booby corset. AWFUL.) It's not that I don't have thighs, or hips, or a belly - oh, I do. Complete with cellulite and flab. Woo! I am just small.

I have enough trouble finding clothes that don't make me look like a teeny bopper without adding a Buddha belly in the mix. I bought a BeBand - which means I can wear my regular pants unbuttoned. But it gets old having to manuver that on and off my pants when I'm peeing approximately 32 thousand times a day. I have a few maternity shirts that my mom has snagged from Target clearance racks - but those leave enough fabric in the belly for a family of three. I have a pair of Gap maternity pants that I got at a consignment sale - and I LOVE them and their elastic band - but they're two sizes too big. And I can't bring myself to spend much money on clothes that I'll only wear less than five months!

I just feel sloppy all the time. I'm either pulling up my unbuttoned pants or wearing just a t-shirt to work or wearing jeans two sizes too big. Look up "hot mess" - you'll find a familiar face. I remember reading that when you're pregnant - you'll be willing to spend $50 for a plain old shirt if if makes you feel better about yourself. I balked.

But, I nearly bought an ugly pair of $30 khakis today at Target just because they sort of fit. Sort of.

And don't get me started on the boob situation. It's just a mess. Sure, it's fun to be bigger for once - but I have no idea what size I am. I bought a  bra a cup bigger a month ago, but I've already grown out of it. I measured and plugged in the info online and it told me I'm a size I couldn't find at Target. I also need to buy a bigger sports bra, but can't bring myself to buy one since I have two practically new ones I bought right before I got pregnant. Have I mentioned? I'm cheap. Possibly the root of these problems.

It was a failure of a maternity clothes day. I didn't have a Gap Family & Friends discount - so an hour spent researching and filling my basket was fruitless. Target's maternity selection was pathetic. I ended up only getting a $4 shirt at Target and as I checked out, talked myself into buying a vitaminWater as a treat for my clothing failures. Walking out to my car, I opened it up eagerly to find that it was completely frozen.

So I came home, shook the bottle like crazy, and drank ice-laced vitaminWater while I purchased far too many bras from Victoria's Secret in my Official New Internet-Calculated Size. At least if I have a bra that fits me, I'll feel halfway human, right? Next up: getting a gift certificate to a place that sells petite maternity clothes. Does that place even exist?

(Yes, I realize in the Grand Scheme of Things, feeling crappy about the way I look and not finding a bra at Target is unimportant. I realize I should be happy my baby is healthy. Be happy I am pregnant. I realize this, so please understand that I just need a space to let down my hair and scream into my pillow.)


  1. I could have written this post! I'm small too and finding maternity clothes has been AWFUL. I was looking forward to wearing all the "cute pregnant clothes" but nothing fits right and I just feel frumpy. The bra situation is horrible too - I bought a nursing bra last week (I'm 34 weeks so I figured I'd try one) - I got measured for it and everything and two days later it was too small. UGH. And I've totally spent $50+ on a plain shirt because it fit right and made me feel good about myself :) More than once, lol.

  2. The way maternity clothes are made is ridiculous. Pregnant women don't all of a sudden miraculously become the same size! How frustrating. But I have several friends, all in varying sizes (including extremely petite, like you) have found awesome luck on ebay and craigslist. Many women sell huge lots of clothes for dirt cheap, and you can find all different sizes.

    I'm curious to see what happens when I get pregnant. Like you, I'm very petite. I'm 5'2" and only in the past couple years have I been able to donate blood. But I've always had a large chest - ranging anywhere from a 34C to a 36D. And yet, all the clothes I try that fit the rest of my body don't fit my boobs. Lovely.

    Anyway...sorry for the long comment! I'm so excited for you, and I'm so sorry for this frustration you're experiencing. Hopefully once everything is out on the table at work you can go crazy with the maternity clothes :-)

  3. Target's maternity section generally sucks--something weird about how things are cut. I ended up, after much angst, at Motherhood Maternity, because I got to the point where I felt so crappy and wanted something that made me look semi ok more than I wanted to save money. I don't think I ever bought anything over $50, and that was for a dress for a work function. Anywya, they didn't have a lot, but they had a few decent shirts that let me hide things in the beginning but ended up fitting me almost the whole pregnancy. I don't know if they would have stuff that fits you, but I do know they have petites at the store by me.
    My only tip if you do that--they have the most craptastic return policy, but if you can find a Babies R Us that has MM, you can use the BRU return policy instead.

  4. Destination Maternity has a good selection of Maternity clothes. I've heard that they have EVERYTHING. I know they have plus size maternity clothes. Those are pretty hard to find too.

  5. Plus size maternity clothes are a nightmare to find because apparently the common wisdom is that plus size people aren't doing the activity that gets you pregnant in the first place so why would they need maternity clothes? I had (I see now, wrongly) always assumed that people who were petite to begin with had an easier time of it. BUT, maybe you could hit a Lane Bryant for a couple of shirts that will be "larger cut" but not "maternity" per se?

  6. Awww, hang in there Ashley! I am sure you look great, even if you do not feel great. We're always hardest on ourselves.

    Take care!

  7. I can imagine your body changing that much would be such a huge issue! Especially when you're used to being pocket-sized. Heehee.

    I always figured that I wouldn't even need to buy maternity shirts; there are so many styles these days that will work perfectly for a growing belly - but I'm sure they'll definitely enhance it, so you will probably have to wait until you've told everyone (like you mentioned before!). At least after it's all out in the open you'll be able to rely on the juniors section at Target - and spend the extra money on things like maternity pants that make you happy.

    Maybe try to get some "fitted" button-up shirts for not - in a size larger than you're used to? The western style ones are cute without being too casual, although I'm not sure of your exact dress code at work. They'd be able to give you some extra room without feeling like you're wearing a potato sack.


  8. I don't get maternity clothes. How is my pre-maternity size the same as my maternity size? I'm so confused by the whole process.

    As far as telling everyone at work in a school. I would bet money that everyone already knows, or at least suspects. It's a school. Everyone knows everything. It's ok to let the cat out of the bag. It might even help you to feel better about the way you look!

  9. Pull out the sewing machine! You should make yourself some adorable spring dresses that fit you perfectly. I daydream about doing this but, alas, I cannot sew.

    If I were you, I'd be wearing yoga pants and American Apparel t-shirts every day. Oh wait, I do that now... :)

  10. i really recommend motherhood maternity. full priced, they aren't the greatest, but i have had great luck with their sales racks.

    erin - your pre maternity size is the same as your maternity size because only your tummy is significantly bigger (oh and maybe your behind and hips) - so, its cut to fit a size 4 or 6 or whatever, with an added basketball in the front.

    i think this is why at the end of pregnancy, when you feel (and look? maybe that was just me? :-p), like a truck, NOTHING fits except sweatpants and a giant tshirt lol

  11. UM, OH MY GOD!!! I'm so glad I've started reading blogs again! Congratulations to you, girlie, and I can't wait to follow along on your pregnancy journey :)

  12. Everyone needs to scream sometimes.

    As for maternity clothes, my sister in law is maybe 105 pounds, maybe, and tiny and skinny all over. When she got pregnant, she wore her prepregnancy jeans all the way through--they were low slung on her hips anyway, so that worked out well for her. She also just borrowed medium shirts and wore them with a cami under instead of her normal extra small shirt. She never bought any maternity clothes at all. The medium shirts worked well for her when she started breastfeeding too. They looked amazing because they were so flowy. Just a thought!

  13. as for your paragraph stating that you have the body of a curvy 12 year old, THAT IS ME (but without the cute baby bump). I have never been able to donate blood because I'm under 100 pounds and the small chest thing, don't even get me started. I could write a novel based on the crazy things I've done (in the past) to pad that area :)

    The only advice I can offer is to go out to stores and try on everything. If and when you come across something that makes you feel comfortable and fits, BUY IT! As for shirts, I'd recommend you trying on men's V-neck T-shirts in a size small. They generally tend to have more room and lend to a more comfortable fit.

  14. Feeling good about yourself is important! Hang in there!


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