Monday, January 3, 2011

I Scream, You Scream, We All Scream For Mom Jeans!

I know that I've been fairly shallow and vapid lately, with all the posts regarding the state of my hair. And I'm going to have to apologize because I'm not done self-obsessing quite yet. If you thought that the New Year would bring with it more serious and intelligent discussions around here, then you were wrong. Unless you find the topic of Mom Jeans serious. Well then, friends - come on in and pull up a chair. You and your vapid shallowness are more than welcome here.

So let's get to it. I know that this isn't a really considerate thing to mention in light of the timing and all the holiday indulgences we've all recently enjoyed (myself included)....but I'm just going to come out and say it.

I've lost some weight. Don't hate me.

Lately we've been eating well as a family, staying away from too many dinners out and getting in more activity, and it has been slowly paying off for me. At first I didn't notice, but when I started having to tighten my belt a couple more notches, I began to wonder. Were my skinny jeans losing their stretch, or was it possible that I was actually shrinking? The latter scenario was just too absurd to even consider, so I quickly pushed it out of my mind and went on my merry way.

I was still  in denial about being able to buy a size smaller than the size I have been since before Inara was born...until I accidentally pantsed myself over the holidays (thank goodness I was alone!). At that point it was simply a matter of dignity. I couldn't have my bum in danger of falling out of my jeans every time I bent over near a drawer pull! Something had to be done. I just couldn't put it off any longer; I was going to have to actually leave my house to go shopping. Bummer.

I absolutely detest shopping for jeans. There is nothing quite so horrid in all the world as having to walk into a store and make sense of  labels spewing forth gobbledygook such as "curvy" and "long" and "lean". I'm neither curvy or lean, or long or short or flared or skinny, or low-riding. I am just me. And it doesn't matter how many pounds I've shed or how many different stores I go into - nothing ever fits right on my body. Ever.

It's so incredibly frustrating, and I think I have finally figured out why. It's because jeans weren't meant for people like us. You know, people that have tushes and thighs and ankles and god forbid CALVES of normal human proportions. And it's not that I'm curvy and in denial about fitting into super skinny jeggings. That's not it at all. I've been voluptuous and I've been not as voluptuous and it simply makes no difference. Shopping for jeans will always be my most favorite pastime right after ripping off my own fingernails. And I know that no matter your body type, you're feeling me on this.

I really don't understand why women's jeans don't come with an inseam measurement. It's simply mind-boggling. Women don't only come in three heights (petite, regular, and tall), so why should our jeans? And if I can find denim that specifies the inseam, why do I have to take out a second mortgage to be able to afford it? I'm half tempted to go into the men's section and pick up some jeans that hit that sweet spot on my leg - just barely grazing the ground in the back and draping nicely over my foot in the front. Neither petite nor average, but somewhere just in the middle. Somewhere in fantasy land.

There's also the issue of fit. I kid you not,my  friends - yesterday, I tried on at least 30 pairs of jeans in six different stores in under an hour and a half. I was like the Paula Radcliffe of fitting-room marathons minus the hot bod (aside: I wonder if her jeans ever spontaneously fly off her bum? I can see that being a hazard of marathon running):

Run, Paula, Run! Run from the Mom Jeans!! 
P.S.  - You only have 90 minutes left before your baby wakes up from her nap 
and you turn into a pumpkin.

Thirty pairs of jeans later, I had nothing but sweat stains to show for my effort. That's thirty times of taking my boots on and off, thirty times of huffing back and forth and back and forth with different sizes and lengths and colors and fits of jeans, thirty times of cursing under my breath and vowing to eat more cheese and bread so that I could just fit back into my loosey-goosey jeans instead of having to endure the humiliation one more time.

What's really infuriating about non-designer jean shopping (or Denim Torture, as I lovingly refer to it), is that you can try on multiple pairs of the same size of jeans in a store, and have each of them fit you differently. It's as though you've entered a parallel universe, one where jeans are assembled by drunken monkeys with steak knives (such an apt description, and I wish I could take the credit for it - but it's by the fabulous Susan Wagner of the blog Friday Playdate. Scroll down to read all the comments - hilarious and so true!).

The issue becomes further compounded when you throw in footwear. Do I buy jeans that can be worn with flats or heels? Should the leg be wide enough to go over my boots or tucked in? Do I maybe need two pairs of jeans instead of one? Or do I need a different pair for each of my shoes? How many pairs of shoes do I own? If I carry the one and divide by four and do the hokey pokey and turn myself around will the answer become any clearer?

Do I even really care about jeans anymore?

Can't I just live out the rest of my life wearing Mom Jeans that come up to my armpits for a secure and snug fit?

I bet that would keep my bum from falling out.
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