We had two great bloggers post this weekend. If you missed out on their articles, please take a moment to read –
I’m delighted to have Jill with us today. She’s got a great outlook on life and shares her humor with the world on her blog Jill Boyd’s Place. I’ve learned a few things about Jill from reading her blog – She doesn’t like to cook, she needs some female moral support, because she lives in a house full of men, and she has a love for life. Jill doesn’t put on airs and pretend to be something she’s not. She tells it like it is and makes you chuckle through her stories. She is also a new mom-in-law, so be sure to leave her congrats and some good advice. 😉
When I think of summer, I think of so many things: getting three months off of school; celebrating my birthday; ballgames at Wrigley Field; hot, sticky days; warm humid nights with the window open in hopes of catching a breeze; picnics and vacations and girdles in my purse. Hey, everybody has their traditions, and this one was ours.
When I was a teenager, the most popular summer dresses were made of a terrycloth material. They were great for keeping you cool, but the material did have its drawbacks. Mainly, it tended to cling to any suggestion of a curve.
Being a very chaste and proper lady, clinging clothes did not sit well with my mother. No matter how thin you were, she maintained, “things” had a tendency to, well, jiggle. Since public jiggling was not appropriate, my mother insisted that my two sisters and I needed to wear the proper foundational garments under our terrycloth dresses.
Looking back now, I realize that the coolness of the material in the dresses was completely counteracted by the girdles we squeezed ourselves into every Sunday. But at the time we didn’t care. We were foundationally controlled enough so that no improper movement (i.e. jiggling) could occur. Shoot, I was so controlled that it was impossible to tell that there was an actual body located anywhere underneath my dress.
Every year we went on vacation with another family, close friends of ours. They had two daughters right around the ages of me and my two older sisters. And because their mom agreed with everything our mom did, those two girls were also foundationally appropriate.
Misery always loves company.
We did have one problem with our foundational goodness, though. While everything was kept very proper during church, our support garments caused a great deal of trouble with our activities after church. When we were on vacation, we typically followed up a visit to a Sunday service with a visit to an all-you-can-eat buffet. We usually headed directly to the restaurant without stopping to change, meaning all five of us girls were not really going to be able to eat all we could truly eat.
It really seemed so unfair. After all, our brothers—and even our dads—got to shed suit coats and ties before we went to eat. Why should we have to continue to be uncomfortable after the final amens were said? And with that thought in mind, our vacation tradition was born.
When we arrived at the restaurant, we girls would head directly to the bathroom, where we would shed our foundations like the uncomfortable second skins they were. My mom never had a problem with this, so apparently it’s okay to jiggle in a restaurant as long as you don’t jiggle in church. Personally, I try never to jiggle at all, but maybe that’s just a personal preference.
At any rate, here’s where being a slave to fashion would have helped me. My sisters and our friends all carried small clutch purses—the going style of the day. Purses definitely not made for carrying extra things, particularly extra underclothes that we decided to quit wearing halfway through the day.
I, on the other hand, favored a very large purse. Still do, although I rarely carry a girdle around with me anymore. Back then, I pulled myself free of the confines of the girdle, took the first deep breath I’d had in over three hours, and then tucked the silly thing into my purse and was ready to head for the buffet line.
The other four girls couldn’t manage to get their unmentionables all the way in their purses, much less get the purses fastened when they were through. So it quickly became routine for all of them to stuff their garments into my purse. Five girdles in the purse, and I still managed to fasten the snap at the top of the bag. I considered that a personal triumph.
I did occasionally resent carrying a bulging and much heavier purse out of the bathroom. And I really didn’t like that the rest of the girls, all older than me, seemed to take for granted that I would be their foundational pack mule. There was not a lot of appreciation for all the sacrifice I was making. No one even offered to carry the heavy bag for me.
It never occurred to me to carry a smaller bag or refuse to grant free storage space to the others. But it did occur to me to get even. I always made sure I pulled their girdles back out of my bag and returned them—in public.
The rest of FringeGirl’s summer series has been designed to be a help, so I guess I ought to include whatever takeaway value I gleaned from this growing up experience. Here goes:
1. It’s never appropriate to jiggle in public, unless you are attending an all-you-can-eat buffet.
2. It’s easier to wear something that doesn’t cling to curves than it is to wear things that help to hide the very curves your clothes are outlining.
3. It’s probably never a good thing if you’re the one in the group with the largest handbag.
4. I learned that you’d better not carry anything you need in your purse if you’re going to have to dig past five girdles in order to get to it.
5. It’s a good general rule that, if you left the house wearing it, it probably shouldn’t come off until you get back home.
6. If it does come off, always store it in your own bag.
7. If it won’t fit in your own bag, strongly consider whether or not you really need it at all. And then slip it into the nearest trash bin.
8. Friendships cannot survive the public returning of undergarments.
9. Sisterhood can barely survive the public returning of undergarments.
10. It’s probably not a good idea to say undergarments this much when you’re guest posting on someone else’s blog.
Thanks, FringeGirl, for letting me guest post, (although I’m not sure you ever will again!) and may you all have a fun and jiggle-free summer!
Jill Boyd is a pastor’s wife, mother of six children, secretary, homeschool mom and aspiring writer, although not necessarily in that order. When she’s not blogging or writing, she spends her time trying to teach her five sons some manners and adjusting to her new role as mother-in-law extraordinaire. Jill lives in central Florida, where she pretends to be good at tennis and dreams of going on a 25th anniversary trip with her husband, sometime before their 30th anniversary. You can visit Jill on her blog and laugh through life with her.
Wow. I’m suddenly very thankful for my mom and the fact that she did not make me wear girdles to church. Thanks mom!
I just know I’m going to be much more aware of my jiggle today. Perhaps I should shop for Spanx. Anyone ever wear Spanx? Come on, fess up. Are you for Spanx or against it?