Last night I heard someone on the radio mention that there was this survey done of American women, and some significant percentage of them said that they would rather have their wisdom teeth pulled than go shopping for a new bathing suit.  I thought this was odd.  I’ve had my wisdom teeth pulled.  It was painful.  I’ve gone shopping for bathing suits.  That was unpleasant, but still better than a trip to the dentist, in my opinion.  And generally I like the dentist.  I just don’t like having my wisdom teeth pulled.  Fortunately, they don’t grow back.  (They don’t, right?)  I can honestly say, though, that if you held a gun to my head and said, “Wisdom teeth or bathing suit?” I would pick bathing suit every time. 

Of course, I am something of a freak when it comes to bathing suit shopping because the last time I tried on bathing suits, my thoughts were, “This is hideous, this is hideous, this is merely ugly–but dang if I don’t look good for having four kids.  Check me out.  Not in this suit, though, it’s hideous.”  Okay, maybe that’s not exactly how it went down.  But generally, if I don’t look good in a bathing suit, I blame the suit, not me, because what human woman should be expected to look totally awesome in a bathing suit?  It’s the bathing suit manufacturer’s job to make me look good.  I’m paying them, am I not?  Did they, at some point, change the expression to “the customer is occasionally right”?  No.  I rest my case.

That said, I am currently in the unenviable position of needing to do some truly depressing shopping.  Since I’ve weaned the baby, I find myself in the market for a new bra.  The last time I went shopping for a new (non-nursing) bra was after I weaned Mister Bubby.  I went into the store with big dreams and came out with…nothing.  Because I couldn’t find the Misses section where they sold the Double A’s.  Do they still make AA bras?  Because I haven’t seen any since I was in the fifth grade.  I guess these days they make the sports-type bras, which don’t have to fit so very precisely because their only job is to smash down whatever bosom you have, which is probably what you want in the fifth grade.  It was what I wanted.  It’s what I want for my daughter, who got her first bra in third grade.  But that’s another blog. 

Before I had kids, I wore a B cup, but just barely.  I was really more of a B+.  That’s what you call a B that’s almost an A, right?  Which would make my current size an A+.  That’s what you call an A that’s almost…irrelevant.  One might wonder why Madhousewife has to bother with a bra at all.  Well, if I have to explain these things, you’re not invited to the conversation.  I’m eccentric, okay?  Humor me.

So these days I wear one of those sports-type bras, which is really comfortable and suits me just fine unless I actually want to look like a woman, and then it is somewhat insufficient for my purposes.  And I realized recently that I have no idea where to look for a bra that suits my figure–if I may use the term so loosely.  I know lots of women swear by the Victoria’s Secret, but I have not observed that Victoria’s Secret sells anything in an A cup.  Maybe I just visit the wrong Victoria’s Secret stores.  Perhaps I live in a region of the country where breasts tend to be on the big side, and it just isn’t worth VS’s while to stock stuff for the little gal–though if anyone needs the Victoria’s Secret, you’d think it would be the little gal, wouldn’t you?  Well, I would.  I do.  But that’s neither here nor there. 

From what little casual shopping I’ve been able to do in recent weeks, I have ascertained that department stores sell about 437 different types of bras, most of which cannot be worn by women like me without also investing in a ten-pack of tube socks.  I would really like to have a bra that gives the illusion of breasts being there.  I’ve looked at the “padded” bras.  Yeah.  For the woman who wants to add a couple millimeters to her bust size.  I’m a little more ambitious than that.  Also, I take one look at the “padded” A-cup bras, and I wonder, what am I going to do with all that space?  I could wear it, and maybe I’d look like I had breasts–until someone bumped into me and the thing just caved in because there was nothing but an inch-and-a-half of air behind the padding. 

I need something functional.  Like, maybe a bra they would sell to (double) mastectomy patients?  I mean no disrespect. I’m just trying to give you an idea of what I have to work with, which is nothing.  Which is why I can’t wear the “push-up” bras.  I don’t need cleavage.  It’s against my religion to show cleavage anyway.  I just want a little, I don’t know, “stuffing.”  You know what I’m saying? 

And please don’t think that I’m ungrateful.  I’d much rather have my little bosom problem than a big bosom problem.  If you have a big bosom problem, you have my sympathy, truly.  But enough about you.  Can we get back to me?  I’m particularly interested to hear from others in my situation–small-breasted women who wear bras.  What do you recommend?  Tube socks?  Surgery?  If your answer is getting pregnant again, forget it.  I’d rather have my wisdom teeth pulled.

Which reminds me, with these new and reduced breasts, I’m going to need a new bathing suit, too.  Fashion industry, be on alert.