I’m talking about weight, body shape the dreaded fat!
I don’t want to, I know its dull, but the conversation always ends up there, will we ever learn to just let it go and love ourselves as we are?Two good friends came over for lunch today and inevitably we talk about body shape. Not in a ‘shaming’ way, we are not malicious types just in a ‘she is this’ and ‘she is that’ and wondering why, how, what is best?
We talk about it because we are looking for the secret, how’d she got there, would that work for me. We all know the answer, it’s what you eat and how much you move and a big dollop of the genes you were born with.
You notice it is all ‘She’ and not he, men care, they really do, but not nearly as much as we care, I’m sure your man walks around the bedroom naked and doesn’t give a hoot what you are thinking about his arse!
I’m not overweight on paper, I have a healthy and good BMI. In fact, I am very healthy, something I’m so thankful for and I mentally slap myself in the face every time I look in the mirror or step on the scales and just see imperfection. I’m not looking to just drop a few pounds I wanna see Heidi Klum’s butt in the mirror reflecting back when I look at mine.
You see? It’s insane isn’t it? We have ourselves set up against these stunning ideals of how we should be.
I don’t blame the magazines, I work in the beauty industry. In fact I love beautiful women and when working with models I bizarrely don’t feel intimidated, I feel more threatened and insecure when surrounded by women I see every day.
This isn’t a vanity post, I’m bored with my fixation on the body ideal and long for the freedom of not giving a shit and just enjoying life and the gifts I have been given. I recently lost 10lbs over a couple of weeks, sure it felt good, not perfect, when I looked in the mirror but boy I sacrificed a lot to get there and had to workout for nearly two hours a day to make it happen! As soon as I dropped the regime, guess what..back to where I was to start with. Was I happier? The reflection in the mirror was, the sad step (scales) wasn’t so sad, although I looked older in my face and I wasn’t nearly as much fun to be around.
I’m fitter than ever and work out most days of the week but I also eat out most nights and have an amazing social life! My husband never complains that I’m ‘fat’ and rolls his eyes in boredom when I ask that wonderful question ‘does my arse look like two hippos fighting in a pillow case’ in this?
My fixation on my figure has definitely rubbed off on my daughter and I hate myself for it. She is drop dead gorgeous, talented, bright..in short, breathtaking. She has a similar figure to me, hourglass, 50 years ago we were the nations pin ups!
I have recently started following Ashley Graham on Instagram. She is so stunning and a wonderful role model. She tried to be something the industry, her colleagues and the world expected her to be and got there. She couldn’t maintain it and was unhappy. There are things she doesn’t like about herself but she works through it, sure she is young and beautiful, that helps but she loves her body.
Being older and seeing it all start to develop the effects of gravity doesn’t help either! I just want to develop a healthy mental attitude towards my body, NOW, I’m wasting so much time thinking about it.
I’m going to be honest though, I do think that there is a line between being yourself and just abusing your body to the point of being morbidly obese or the other extreme thin to the point of anorexia. When did this all start? Or has it always been this way for women?
My mum used to worry she was to ‘thin’ in her face and sometimes her body but I never saw her look bad. I was always called a ‘big’ girl and I really wasn’t, there are no pictures of me being overweight as a child so that is weird to me I just wasn’t ‘skinny’ either.
Arghh! I’m 43, fighting the mental cruelty of aging without intervention, surrounded by beautiful flawless women who spend their lives working on it and still having the 25 year old battle with my body image!
Mental tips are required, not compliments. We tell each other you look great! Have you lost weight? You look skinny! Did you do something to your hair? Our opinions of other people just a reflection of our own insecurity.
Sadly, I think I will take this attitude to the grave. It seems entirely impossible to change my mindset now. I do hope that we start to focus more on health and by health I don’t mean all looking like amazonian weightlifters! Although I’d take that. 😍
Lets try and make a pact for women of the future. Compliment people on their achievements, their attitude and their talents and not their appearance. It’s something that I need to work on myself too. If I see you and you look beautiful though I will say it, theres no harm in that and if I say it I mean it.
Now I am going to eat the last pastry my friend bought for lunch today, I will try not to beat myself up about it and just thank God that I have this amazing, healthy body that has given me a life I love, children I’d die for and dance moves that are never afraid to make an appearance! Just buy me a cocktail and play the Spice Girls. #wannabe
Just be you.
PS: Check out this cool video from Glamour Magazine with Ashley Graham.
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