Diary of a Mum: (6) The glamour of motherhood

We’ve followed mummy-of-three Claire Bates through pregnancy, birth, teething, toileting and tantrums. It ain’t been pretty. Think her life is getting back on an even keel now her third’s almost a year? Er…Kinda.

I’ve laddered my support pants.
Seriously. The Spanx of Steel, designed never to fail, to hold in all the post-babies bulge that’s squeezed unceremoniously into them, have been foiled by my mega muffin top.
I suppose I should be embarrassed – but I’m sort of relieved if I’m honest. I put my slipped disc down to those bloomin’ things.
Getting them on – particularly if slightly damp from the shower – is more difficult than getting a mortgage. (A little bit of current affairs there, my name’s Ben Elton….)
Don’t get me wrong, the effect once I’ve shoehorned my baby five bellies into them is great, but actually achieving that is akin to labour.
It was one evening, when Bloke and I decided we needed to bring some romance back into our post three children marriage, that I was getting ready for an American Hot at Pizza Express (they light candles on the tables so in his book, “that’s romance love”).
Slightly damp from aforementioned shower, I shimmied myself into my ‘nude’ (why, oh why call the colour nude?) tummy tamers.
When I say shimmied, more of a sweating, heaving, writhing, which, I’m not kidding, sent my back into spasm.
So, dear reader, picture the scene: I’m lying in an embryonic heap on the bedroom floor, red faced and red assed when Number Two appears at the door having illegally snuck out after lights out.
“Is this what you do when I go to bed Mummy?” he asks, slightly bemused, slightly terrified.
“You look like Sportacus.”

“The classic “nine months to put it on, nine months to take it off” excuse was four weeks away from it’s sell-by date”.

Of all the things I imagined I looked, an Icelandic CBeebies superhero in way-too-tight a catsuit, was not one of them. It was at this point I realised a) I’d seriously hurt my back and was actually totally unable to move, b) I was pretty much naked except for my Spanx and my Take That Live pink cowboy hat
(I don’t know why, it’d been a while since I’d been out and I was going cerazy ok?) and c) worse than all of that, I’d laddered my power pants.
My mate had introduced them to me over a Starbies coffee (and three slices of Rocky Road) one morning and they’d saved my life.
Number Three was eight months old and the classic “nine months to put it on, nine months to take it off” excuse was therefore four weeks away from its sell-by date.
“If you get the ones that come right up under your boobs,” she said “your muffin top gets so far shoved up that it actually pops out into your bra and makes your cleavage look the
way it did when you were 23.”
This is the same pal who recommended the “failsafe” way to conceive a girl. I’ve three boys.
So, that afternoon, I found myself in John Lewis trawling the fat pants aisle with that unaccountably shifty look on your face you always have when going through the “nothing to declare” channel with Katie and Peter’s album the only slightly illegal thing in your luggage.
So I parted with the credit crunching thirty quid and made my way home via Krispy Kreme Doughnuts for the skinny
vanilla frosted with skinny filling.
Quite clearly not skinny.
Of course when you get on the pants of joy, you then realise you can go nowhere without them. Nowhere.
I then wore them on the school run, the pre-school run, the after-school run, the Waitrose run, anything but the run run – which might’ve negated the need for the darn pants in the first place.
So, in fairness, they were wearing a bit thin the night they finally let me down.
I think I need to have a proper burial – or at least mark their passing in some way. 
Perhaps I should take them next Wednesday when I finally, after months of kidding myself, haul my size 12/14 (who am I kidding? 14) backside along to my local FatFighters and ask Marjorie Dawes to ceremonially burn them.
I could bask in my co-slimmers’ applause as I triumphantly step out like a fat phoenix from the pant flames and say loudly and proudly with a theatrical Shakespearean flourish: “My name’s Claire Bates – I
no longer need my Spanx!”
Once I’m back to a size 10, all of this will probably be funny. I might even miss that game of chance you play on the loo when you’ve finished pee-ing but have to lunge with the paper like a ravenous Augustus Gloop in the chocolate factory to catch the drips before they run down onto the elastic.
Oh come on, don’t pretend you don’t wear them and don’t know that you wee with them on, through a “convenient female-shaped” hole?
Did I say too much?
As regular readers of this column will know, I believe there is nothing glamorous about pregnancy, birth and motherhood.
I love all of it – I really do – but don’t even try to get me started on the bloody “yummy mummy” debate.
Victoria Beckham is not real! No-one is that shape after a c-section!
If fat pants are what we need, then fat pants are what we will use girls.
And when I’m counting my points next week on my red day or my green day, I will raise a can of “tasty” faux strawberry slimquick shake in honour of all those gorgeous girls, with bonny babies and a real, proper, post-pregnancy pot. Cheers!