You know what’s harder than swimsuit shopping? Swimsuit shopping with your in-between daughter.
You see, my little girl, she’s stuck in between. She’s too big for girls sizes and too young for juniors. As if this whole preteen transition isn’t difficult enough, because of a broken strap on last year’s suit, we set out on a mission to find a new one. We spent two hours, in and out of every store that carries girl’s and junior’s clothing. We walked in, we searched, she tried on, and we left.
In each of those stores and dressing rooms, a piece of my aching heart was left on the rack with the rejected suits.
I watched her hold up the girls suits, stretching the fabric hoping it might fit. We moved to the junior section where she immediately rejected the tops that revealed more than her sports bra. Her fingers pinched at the padding in the cups that she couldn’t and didn’t want to fill. I looked at the same suits, encouraging her to try a few on. Defeat settled in my heart. I joked and painted a smile on my face all while begging God to protect her from the damage this shopping trip could do.
Finally, we sat in the dressing room. I held her, and we both cried. I prayed aloud over her, asking God to remind her where her worth, value, and confidence come from. I thanked Him for the precious time we were given to spend together, just the two of us. We left that dressing room without a swimsuit. We endured an attack on her self-image, only one of many to come I’m sure.
We will try again another day. We will keep looking until we find the right suit for her in-between body. And she will splash into the pool comfortable, confident, and carefree—just as an in-between should be.