Caution: PG-13 post ahead. And possibly too much information...
Once upon a time, I was a normal-sized girl who could buy a swimsuit off any rack in any store that I chose. (Okay, to be completely honest, I could buy any modestly-cut one piece or really modestly-cut tankini, which limited me significantly when it came to styles I could purchase but not when it came to size. Because, to review, I was a normal-sized girl.)
Then I had a baby.
Then I (oh so eventually!) lost all my baby weight and tried to fit back into the many cute swimsuits I'd accumulated over the years.
Then I suddenly became a porn star.
You see, though I am basically at my pre-baby weight, the weight has redistributed itself in various new places, including, most relevantly for this post, in my derriere and my, ahem, boobs, to put it less than delicately. So suddenly all these cute swimsuits still in my ostensible size are, well, practically X-rated. (You're welcome, Google, for the mention of porn, boobs, and X-rated all in one innocent post. I pity the disappointed people you steer here today.)
But I am not one to be daunted by such a thing, particularly when the answer involves shopping. Unfortunately, I didn't realize my days of off-the-rack shopping are OVER! Apparently, my shopping forays informed me, when one's chest reaches a certain size, no matter what the size of one's jeans, one can only buy swimwear from a specialty vendor, most likely online (or at least only available online for me, the fact that I live in a BEACH TOWN in the heart disease belt of the US notwithstanding). In addition and most dishearteningly for I've-just-lost-weight me, the suits available are all thick, chunky straps in dark, "slimming" colors on plus-sized models. No more cute tops or cute cuts in cute colors for you, my friend, because you had a baby and got a little junk in your trunk. (UNLESS you had a boob job and are super skinny with huge fake boobs--then there are lots of string bikinis around with your name on them...somewhere...in very small letters so it can fit on the teeny, tiny pieces of fabric.)
Enter (dare I say it?) Land's End. Normally, I shy away from this particular retailer as their clothes are generally, one, too boxy for my taste, and two, mostly designed for cold weather, which I shun. But they do specialize in swimwear for the larger chested, and the suit options aren't terrible looking, either. Plus, a big plus, all their merchandise can be returned for free to your local Sears. Huzzah! (I HATE to pay return shipping!). In the end, I sent myself almost $400 worth of swim options (lots of duplicates in two different sizes so I could return what didn't fit and perhaps still find a few options that worked in all that) including overstocks, tankini/bikini bottom separates, and full suits, some 10 or 12 possibilities. And today they arrived (very fast shipping) and, lo and behold, two suits/combinations worked beautifully. They fit, they were comfortable, they had sufficient coverage, and, most importantly, the girls were locked and loaded. Porn star no more! Were they the cheapest options? Sadly, no. But I am planning on wearing them out this summer while J and I live at the beach and the water park, so we're worth it!