Here are the top six reasons why I, as a 43-year-old, size 12, mother of four, woman with thunder thighs, feel totally justified in rocking a two-piece.
1. I don't give a sh*t.
I actually do not exist for your viewing pleasure, and your ideas about who should and should not be seen in a bikini are zero percent my concern.
I have not always been married to the wonderful, supportive, man among men, husband/editor that I am now married to. I was once married to a man who said things like:
"They really should not make bikinis in any size over 8."
Now, I have not been a size 8 since I was about 8 years old -- so this was kind of a dick move on his part. It also confirmed my suspicions that people who make "rules" about how other people should treat their bodies are best left alone -- far away from any people who may inadvertently offend them.
I also have sisters who regularly say things like:
"She has no business being in a bikini."
Well, lucky for me I am not wearing a bikini to drum up business.
I was on the beach in Miami once when a 300-pound grandma walked happily down the beach in a brightly colored two-piece. This was intensely disturbing to a group of vacationing, suburban women talking about yoga addiction, shame eating and jeggings. There were gasps, there were sighs, and there was one Xanax-deprived woman, so distraught, crying out:
"That is just not right."
It is a bathing suit, people. Perhaps we should all just relax.
2. I have a bikini body.
I know this because I put an actual bikini... on my body. If you are waiting to break out the bikini when your body is perfect, resign yourself to a one-piece.
3. It is closer to being naked.
Swimming is best done naked. When laws of society make that awkward, we should at least be able to swim with the minimum amount of wet fabric against our bodies.
4. My belly has earned it.
If there is one part if my body that should be able to do whatever the f*ck it wants, it is my mid-section. Four of the greatest people I know have lived there.
Hardworking = flauntable.
5. I have daughters.
I want to show them a woman comfortable in her body, who is active right alongside them. A woman who's not sitting poolside under a big cover-up, because anything less might be considered inappropriate.
6. It is by popular request.
Well, maybe not popular -- but certainly frequent -- requests come in for me to wear a bikini. OK, it is only ever my husband/editor who asks -- nay, pleads -- for this particular ensemble. But, he is tenacious and I like to throw him a bone every once in a while. [Editor's note: Thanks, honey, for the bone.]