So far, fourteen million people have watched Kristin Hensley and Jen Smedley rant about the perils of swimsuit season, and it’s pretty easy to see why the Internet just can’t get enough.
Hensley and Smedley, creators of the popular web series #IMomSoHard, posted the video to Facebook on Thursday. In it, they perfectly spell out the pressures women feel when putting on a swimsuit, the hardships particular to moms on the beach, and finally they offer up some surprisingly helpful encouragement to fellow mothers.
“I would golf in this,” Hensley effused, while Smedley proclaimed, “This is more than I wore to the prom!”
They go on to reenact all the ways the board shorts and tees are so much more functional than a bikini, allowing them to do regular beach activities like crouch down to get stuff out of a cooler without accidentally exposing themselves, a swimwear reality that’s all too familiar to most women.
Hensley, like many of us, can’t seem to shake a few unwanted pounds. Since her daughter is four years old, she laments, “I can’t even call it baby weight anymore. Just call it weight.”
Being uncomfortable doesn’t mean you get out of your parenting duties in the summer, though! She continues, “I do not feel confident in a swimming suit at all…but I am not going to let that get in the way of me building a moat.”
The popular modern styles of swimsuits don’t help matters, either, no matter how many space-age materials they use. “I’m gonna look like I love cheese no matter what,” Smedley says, “Because I love cheese.”
Issues range from cutouts that make it look like you’re “pressing something against a tennis racquet” to skimpy bottoms that don’t even come close to covering the goods.
Even the high-waisted styles are compared to post-pregnancy underwear, and while hospital mesh panties are universally loved by new moms everywhere, that does not mean they’re a good poolside look.
Throughout the video, the duo gives little bits of encouragement, like when Smedley reassures us that there’s always somebody on the beach that everyone will be looking at instead of you; specifically, that “dude with a real hairy back.”
The point is, we’re all so worried about what people are thinking about us, we forget that people probably aren’t even paying any attention.
So, basically it’s just like middle school!
Using your kid as a cover up?
Now that’s a pro tip I’ll be taking straight to Instagram!
But the real problem isn’t so much about how you look, and it’s not even so much about what you can or can’t do in your suit (although it is pretty difficult to chase kids across the sand or effectively discipline them while wearing what amounts to a ruffly Band Aid).
It’s about how you feel.
“I never thought of you as fat, you were just Mom.”
Oh, the feels.
“Nobody thinks that they look perfect ever,” Smedley said. “Let’s just all go to the beach.”
Hensley also expressed how important it is to send the right messages to our kids.
“I want my daughter to love her life and to love herself and she’s not going to do it because I tell her to do it,” she said. “She’s going to do it because I teach her to do it.”
“When I’m at the beach, I’m there to lifeguard, build sandcastles, supply treats, re-stand the umbrella every dang time it blows over, spray sunscreen, drink a beer, look for seashells, warm-up wet kiddos, force people to eat sandwiches and drink juice, blow up water-wings, and keep my son from publicly urinating,” they said.
“Basically, I’ve got a really fun job to do and I don’t have time to let a piece of lycra throw me off my game.”
So what do you think? Do you relate as strongly as these other viewers, and if so, do you think you’ll be able to feel comfortable in your own skin (and your own swimsuit) this summer?