I was born in to a modest family. I don't remember much nudity growing up. As a matter of fact, I recall that it was very important to my mother that I keep my body covered, especially when it came to picking out bathing attire. Bikinis were an absolute NO. Tankinis? That would be a NO as well. Maybe it had something to do with an exposed belly button? I don't know. My best friend will attest to the fact that I did not particularly like my mothers conservative view on swim wear. She will also tell you how I would leave my house in a dull one piece only to do the quick change in to one of her bikinis/ tankinis or one of mine that I conveniently stored at her house, once I was out of parental range. She will also glare at me as she recalls how one time I forgot to leave one of those bikinis behind at her house and when it ended up in our laundry I BLAMED the incident on her. It was HER bikini after all. Katy reminded me this evening that we had to sensor pictures and remove any incriminating ones with me wearing said bathing suits so mom wouldn't find out. My mother thought for a few years that Katy, who is by far, probably the most honest, considerate, conservative and modest person I know, was a BAD influence on me. Mom knows the truth now and Katy has forgiven me. I think?
Living in Hawaii helped to decrease my modest tendencies. It's not uncommon to walk around Costco or KTA ( grocery store) in a bathing suit, maybe a pareo wrapped around your waist, sporting a pair of cheap, but oh so stylish "locals" ( flip flops ). I learned the art of dressing/undressing in a variety of public settings when I was paddling ( outrigger canoe ). It was not uncommon for me to leave work for practice, arrive in my casual work clothes, change into my running or work out clothes only to remove those and put on my bathing suit and paddling shorts for practice and then put on something dry once practice was over, often in the front seat of my car, at the back of my car or if I was lucky, maybe in a small public bathroom I could duck in to if there were a number of people around. Truth of the matter is, no one really cared. There could be 8 cars, trucks lined up on the street before practice and we were all doing the same thing.
It was also during my time in Hawaii that the girls I was working with formed a group called the "Pinky Club." We were adventurous. We were brave. We liked the moonlight. Seriously, if you lived in a place like the Big Island where there was an active volcano in short driving distance, an isolated natural oasis right along the ocean called the hot ponds, heated by Pele herself that offered the most incredible view of a moon rise over the surf between swaying palm trees, wouldn't YOU sneak in after dark on full moon nights, drink champagne and strawberries and skinny dip? Forget modesty!
By the time I moved to Texas, I was a bit older and my modest habits started returning. I sported a bikini for a year or two, but then as often happens when we get happy and comfortable and our metabolism starts down shifting, I started wearing those dang one pieces again. I entered in to a more traditional day to day life with nary an opportunity for public dressing or undressing.
Then a funny thing happened. We started trying to have a family. It was a long bumpy road of planned this and planned that, unexpected this and that, hormones, shots, ice packs, heating pads, procedures, surgeries, appointments, ultra sounds, sonograms, upsets, and disappointments. I think I was in a constant state of undress in varying awkward positions in the presence of some doctor, nurse, technician, medical assistant, student and maybe a even a custodian or electrician for 5 years. Of course my husband was usually there too. Now before you think I am going to bum you out, have no fear. We got the most amazing end results. But along that journey, I discovered, it really is impossible to be modest when you are desperately trying to have a baby. I didn't care WHO saw what or where as long as it meant they were going to help me have a baby. Period. If I saw someone who looked even remotely competent in an elevator, I was prepared to bare it if they could get me a baby.
Whether it was perseverance, a miracle, gobs of money, finding the best people or a combination of all, we have August and Henry. It really is a testament to my lack of modesty that they are here I suppose.
As you may have read in my earlier post, I bring the boys in to the bathroom while I shower. I may have mentioned in another post that August has a particular enthusiasm for being naked and will run around the house patting his tushie gleefully exclaiming, " I naked. I naked Mommy." He also has discovered he has a penis and lets me know each time we change diapers that he has a penis. "Penis. I have penis mommy." Yes, Auggie I know you have a penis. Boys have penis'. I try to end that conversation quickly. I am not really prepared to go on. My life flashes before my eyes as I think, oh Crap! I am a parent. I am responsible for guiding, protecting, educating this child....how much time do I have before I have to answer those tough questions?
Apparently not long.
This morning as I was getting ready to jump in the shower, August looked up at me and said "penis mommy." Yes, August, I know. You have a penis. " No. Mommy? Penis?" I know. Yes. Penis. "MOMMY. Penis?" And he motioned to my towel as if to say " Where the heck is your penis? August, mommy doesn't have a penis. Little boys and daddy's do. I am getting in the shower now. I have some thinking to do. Mommy is thinking...crap They are growing up way too fast! And I am truthfully feeling really naked.
Oh yeah, and where did I put my "Mom" bathing suit with the swim skirt?