Before I get into this column, let me tell you: I don’t want to hear one thing about working out. I started with my trainer months ago, and all is going well.
I have been wanting to write this for a while but kept putting it off until I saw my friend Sadiqa Reynolds post on Facebook today:
“Trigger warning ladies!
I had a near death experience and I am forever changed.
I put my Spanx on and then sat down and bent over to buckle my shoes. I fumbled with the buckle but couldn’t get it. Apparently, being bent over so long with my stomach being cut in half by my undergarments caused a depletion of oxygen to my brain. Just as I was blacking out, I realized what was happening and jumped up and ripped off the Spanx… thereby saving my own life.”
Baby, let me tell you I laughed and I cried and I cried and I laughed as I read her post because flashbacks of me putting on Spanx came to mind, and the memory of how those Spanx felt when they didn’t stay in place are burned into every cell in my body.
It felt like someone was trying to saw my ass in half!
Even to type this, I am severely triggered!
Listening to my friend, RaeShanda Lias-Lockhart, who owns the boutique All is Fair in Love and Fashion, tell me, “Put on shapewear, Hannah. It will smooth you out, Hannah. It will hold your stomach in, Hannah.” I finally gave in. Why God Why?! I guess my ego got the better of me, and I went and bought not one but two pair. I was gonna be Naomi in this bitch!
I should have known once I had to slick my body up like I had just been for an oil change to put them on something was going to go wrong. I put on my bra and my dress, and a sista was cute. For about 32.5 minutes. Somewhere over the course of the night, my Spanx turned into Ain’ts.
I felt like I was having an out-of-body experience, and trust me if I could have left my body to turn around and tell my dumb ass, “Why in the hell did you put on those Spanx,” I would have!
It felt like those Spanx were made with the strength of Kryptonite, Titanium and Steel! I was at an event and couldn’t adjust them, and when I tell you I silently called on Jesus, Joseph and Mary to deliver me from the sin of Spanx, I am not lying! It seemed like everyone around me was talking and moving in slow motion. In my mind, I was thinking, “Hurry up! Don’t you see I’m dying here!” I pulled out my phone and started typing my last will and testament and eulogy. “Here lies Hannah. Gone on to glory after her body was cut in half by panties that couldn’t hold in her stomach and ass.”
After I performed, everyone wanted to take pictures. And I promise, if you look at some of those pictures, I probably look like I am blinking hard because I am! Why?! Because I was trying to blink twice to signal for help! By the time I made it to my car, I was fighting for breath. (I am sooo laughing writing this!) I was panting like a dog on a hot summer day — only, a dog has enough sense not to stuff its ass into Kryptonite Spanx.
I felt like I was indeed going to pass out. I thought for sure it was going to require the jaws of life to get me out of this getup. Y’all, I was racing home, and by this time, my bra started to conspire with the Spanx, and I felt like I was wrapped in the grip of a boa constrictor. I don’t know how I did it, but honey, every time I was at a stoplight, I used my hands to fight with the clutches on my bra.
Finally, I got the bra off! It was almost as awkward as a young virgin removing a bra for the first time, but hell it worked! I didn’t care Who saw me — this was a matter of life and death.
By the time I made it home, I was sure the lower half of my body had lost circulation, but I managed to race up the stairs and into the house, kick off my shoes and peel the Spanx off, which had now morphed into a second skin on my body! Babyyyyyyy, when those Spanx came off, I felt like my soul had been resurrected. But, y’all, why did my dress zip up the back, and no one was home and I couldn’t get it off? So y’all know what happened. I ripped that dress apart like I was some ‘90s Chippendales dancer ripping a T-shirt! I collapsed on the bed and just breathed. Deep Full Breaths!
As I was on the bed, I started plotting RaeShanda’s murder, but once my breath came back, so did my sanity.
But ladies, Never The Fuck Again!
I’m letting it all hang out! I don’t care! I don’t care! Don’t tell me about any shapewear. Don’t even mention the words shape and wear in the same breath around me! I have serious flashbacks!! Until I lose weight or if I never lose another pound, it’s just gonna be what it is!! You can hate it, you can like it, you can love it. I’m going back to the old fashioned way of doing things — suck in my stomach for a picture, and, after it’s snapped, let it all roll out!
I have lumps, bumps and cellulite But I Can Breathe!
Ladies I hope this story has made you laugh. If you have a Spanx/shapewear nightmare please feel free to share! •
Hannah L. Drake is an author, poet and spoken word artist. Follow her at writesomeshit.com and on Twitter at hannahdrake628.