An unanswerable question

Here’s today’s riddle:

What’s the difference between these pants I bought at Target last week with the stretchy waistband and my regular old maternity jeans?

Nothing! They’re the same! The new pants are canvas and only cost $12 but a stretchy waistband is a stretchy waistband is a stretchy waistband. The real riddle is how come I feel so much better in my new Target pants than I do in any of my old maternity jeans? I think it’s just because I bought these pants in the regular women’s department and they don’t say “maternity” on the label. Which is totally insane. It’s not like anyone else can see the labels. And yet because I am wearing non-maternity pants today I feel about 20 lbs lighter than usual.

Actually, I’m only 3 lbs away from my “pre-pregnancy” weight. You  may think those quotation marks are unnecessary, since pre-pregnancy is a medical term for “the time before a fertilized egg implanted in your uterine wall and then you ate the entire contents of the frozen food department at Costco” but it’s not as simple as that. Pre-pregnancy my hips still fit through most standard sized door frames. Pre-pregnancy I didn’t rub holes in my jeans with the power of my thighs. Pre-pregnancy my boobs were still closer to the arctic circle than the equator, but now they’re determined to have a tropical vacation even if I’m not going. The weird changes my body went through – and is still going through – are a lot bigger than just weight gain and loss. I’m starting to doubt my old jeans are ever going to fit again, even if I lose those last three pounds times ten. My days in the misses department are totally, completely, officially over. I am now a women’s section shopper.

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12 Responses to “An unanswerable question”

  1. SKR says:

    I am 4 months post-partum, weigh 8 lbs LESS than I did before I got pregnant and I still cannot fit into most of my clothes. Everything *shifted*. Gah!

    And, before anyone thinks anything unkind about my weighing 8lbs less – it’s because I’ve had to give up all dairy, soy, and citrus in order to feed my munchkin through my boobs. I would gladly gain those 8lbs back for a grilled cheese & pesto sandwich. Or a glass of OJ. Or a veggie burger. Or butter. Or ice cream.

  2. lalaland13 says:

    Can your boobs send me a postcard? That description is the funniest thing I’ve read all morning. Gonna be giggling over that all day now.

    Being a women’s shopper can be depressing sometimes. Not to scare you, because you probably know clothes-shopping is designed to make us feel bad, but in many stores, it’s like the Women’s department doesn’t even exist. It has been sucked into a vortex. This will depress you so much you will go seek out cookies. Or maybe that’s just me.

    Also, the Target here blurs the line between maternity and women’s so much that sometimes I’ll see something cute only to find out it’s maternity.

  3. FourInchHeels says:

    @lala – Are you saying the maternity label is supposed to stop you from buying it? Because I definitely bought a maternity shirt this weekend at Target. It’s super cute and on clearance, but I just thought it was breezy and flowy. Then I got it home and saw the label, and all became clear. But it’s cute, damn it, and I’m keeping it!

    Suzanne – I know it’s small comfort, but based on the pictures I’ve seen of you over the last few months:
    1. you’re even more gorgeous than you were before you got pregnant; you wear motherhood VERY well. You just seem to glow.
    2. Whatever weight and shape changes are going on, I think you’re wearing the changes really well and don’t look disproportionate. I always gain weight awkwardly so it really shows, but because (all your photos seem like) you’ve changed proportionately, it’s not glaringly obvious that things are different than they were pre-baby.

  4. ryan says:

    while driving to work this morning i thought, “damn, in a few months my belly is going to be right up against the steering wheel” and then i said out loud, “and seriously, how can a body ever come back from that?”

    i have a rather small, curve-less frame, until a few months ago i’d never been above 125 lbs., and i’m terrified of what my post-birth body is going to look and feel like. at 31 i’d just gotten used to the body i had!

  5. Erin (i need to think of a fake name) says:

    Don’t you mean Junior’s? I thought Misses was the women’s department?

  6. Isn’t it weird how your shape totally changes? I am constantly trying to figure out when exactly my knees started to look like that and I still wear some of my maternity shirts when I need to cover the gut. I wear them all the time actually. The SpaceToddler will be 2 in December. Hell, the maternity sweaters are the only one I have left that can still be wrangled around my boobs. Unfortunately my enormous tummy absolutely destroyed the pants so I had to suck it up and buy a whole bunch or larger jeans.

  7. h_a_l says:

    I have said goodbye to all of my old jeans forever (it was a teary parting with Miss 60), except for these Levis’ “tilted” 505 jeans which I bought in the early stages of pregnancy. See the front waist “tilts” down so your gut can hang over. I’m amazed that my thighs and ass fit back in these though thanks stretch denim. you know what is the bain of my post-partum existence right now? Work outfits. I don’t want to buy all new stuff, hate my maternity stuff (a lot of it is summery anyway), and can’t fit into any of my old work stuff. Boo!

  8. Erin (i need to think of a fake name) says:

    Gottcha, so it’s like that third section of Kohl’s where everything is elastic.

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