16 JUNE 2021 | PARENTING | BY JUDE FOULSTON
So last week I went and got fitted for a new bra (sorry if this is over share but once you’ve been diagnosed with breast cancer you get a little numb to whether one can or can’t be sharing all things breasts and bras, even on on a parenting blog.)
So anyway, I went to have a bra fitted....
For some context - I’ve just brought myself a shiney new Lisa Raleigh rebounder (a mini trampoline all to myself - ok that lasted one day and now my kids think they have a trampoline both inside and outside ). The only condition from my medical team for using the rebounder post reconstruction was to make sure I had enough support.
I decided against my normal course of heading to my local Woolies, and grabbing my ‘normal’ size off the rails and, this time, rather going to a specialized studio who I was confident would take all my bits and pieces into consideration, and would have the expertise to address my specific requirements.....
And that’s what got me thinking.... for some.... going to Woolies and grabbing a bra off the racks, knowing it’s going to fit you, knowing that you know what size you need, perhaps even the same style as last time your brought a bra, probably the same size you brought 10 years ago regardless of how good those 10 years have been to you!....well, there is something easy about just doing what you know, over and over again. It’s comforting. It’s kind of a standard fit. It’s quick and easy. Do we get the best fit? Well, no, probably not.... but for many, that will be ok. More than ok, it’s all that they need. Or think they need, perhaps.
And then I stepped into Liza Clifford’s Bra Studio.... and instead of having 4 available cup sizes and having to go with a 36 because they had no 34s in my size..... they had every size combination available with cups going up to almost the end of the alphabet.... I guess that’s what happens when you go to a specialized store... and if they don’t have your size then they order it in for you, not for a second letting you walk out of their doors with anything less than what is just right for your unique shape, your design preferences and of course in the colours you prefer.
And as I walked out of there, full of confidence in my new sports bra with boobs considerably higher than perhaps they have been for the last year it did make me think about how the experience I had there could be the experience many of us give our kids with their learning.
You see.... while many kids can go to Woolies and grab what they need off the rails, there are also many many kids who need a specialized service. A service or product that gives them more options than the standard 4 when in fact there are 24 available... because not everyone fits into the ‘standard 4 options’.
Why do the majority of us go to Woolies? Well, because it’s what we know... its also possibly a little cheaper, and until we’ve tried something different we probably think it’s all we need, - we just walk in when we want to, don’t need anyone to help us and we can chuck the bra in with tonight’s supper purchase and a treat for the kids lunchboxes.
Let’s be honest, until you need something that’s specialized Woolies is ‘fine’. It’s not until you have bigger breasts, or need extra support, or have a size that doesn’t fit somewhere in the standard range that you start looking at options... And at first you have no idea where to look, actually, at first you don’t even consider there are other options. You know no different and put up with trying to fit into the standard sizes, well, because that’s what you’ve been told, that’s what your friends do and thats what you know. Until you know differently and then it all changes.
The absolute joy and perhaps surprise when you find that there is a size available for you, that you can jump on a rebounder even after a mastectomy, that you can feel confident again even after there were days and months when you’d lost that confidence....
I guess my story was just a reminder to me that us parents who have kids are aren’t exactly standard.... who are a little out the box.... well, even though you may or may not know it, there are different options out there.... there are more options out there.... there are options out there that will get your kids to walk out a door with their heads held high again.
Liza Clifford’s tag line is ‘Put on Courage’.... perhaps those words are truer than we realize for all of us needing a little extra support...