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Tuesday, September 11, 2007

Women are supposed to have CURVES!!

Tonight, I went shopping after church. I had a "I'm proud of me" moment, because I finally accepted the size I am, not the size I want to be. Usually, buying new clothes involves my picking up the size I've always been, the size I'd like to be, but sadly, a size smaller than I really am. Tonight, I picked up the larger size. Yes, I was disgusted at how huge it looked on the hanger. But it felt good to put something on that fit the first time. No looking in the mirror at pants that are way too tight and thinking I look even worse.

We spent Labor Day Weekend at the hot springs. One thing I noticed was the people in their bathing suits. I have to admit, I've been paranoid about the weight I've been gaining and how I look in a bathing suit. Several of my friends have said that they will no longer wear a bathing suit because of their weight gain. Out of the hundreds of people I saw in bathing suits over the weekend, not one of them looked like a swimsuit model. None of the men had a six pack, unless it was hidden somewhere in their cooler. Only about a handful of women didn't have a nicely rounded belly.

Part of my perspective came from one of the women I saw there. She was by far the largest woman I've ever seen. I have a lot of curvy friends, and they look like Angelina Jolie next to this woman. And there she was, playing in the pool, wearing a bathing suit, having a great time. Yet, she was so beautiful, exuding confidence, and very obviously not caring about what anyone would think she looked like in a bathing suit. I almost asked her if I could take her picture, because I seriously thought she was so beautiful. But then I thought it might embarrass her or she might think I was making fun of her, so I didn't. I just have to say, though, I have so much respect and admiration for this woman.

Contrast that with another woman I saw. She was about average size, with the usual curves that many women have post-baby. Her daughter asked her to join her in the pool, and she said, "no, I'm too fat to wear a bathing suit." The little girl said, "Mommy, you're beautiful. I want to be like you." And the mom argued about how fat she was. I watched the mom spend the entire day, sitting poolside, fully dressed, watching her daughter have all the fun. The mom seemed miserable. And who wouldn't be? Sitting by a pool on a beautiful day, refusing to join a little girl who wanted her mommy because she was too embarrassed to wear a bathing suit.

I wanted to point out the larger woman to this lady, and tell her, "Look! She's having a great time with her kid." But I figured the woman wouldn't understand. She'd probably just see the fat. After all, that's all she could see when she looked in the mirror.

The only people with perfect bathing suit bodies come from Hollywood, where everything is fake. I hate that the second a woman puts on a few pounds, baby rumors start. That little pooch? Most of us have it. It's NORMAL. The flat stomach? Not normal. It takes a lot of exercise, diet, and training to accomplish.

So even though I'd prefer to be a size smaller, I'm not going to kill myself to get there. I know I need to lose ten pounds. Not because Hollywood says so, but because my doctor says that is the healthiest weight FOR ME. He believes I can get there by continuing to eat a well-balanced and healthy diet (ie: not changing anything, because I do that well already) and exercising more. Not thrilled about the exercise thing, but that's okay. I'll work on it anyway. I have a lot of friends trying to lose weight, many of whom read my blog. I support them, not because I think they're too fat, but because they're choosing to become healthier. I value my friends and I value their health. Which is what any weight loss decision should be about.

Don't let the uber-skinny models and Hollywood freaks fool you. Their bodies are not natural. God didn't make us that way. Our curves are a part of who we are. They nourish our children. They entice our husbands. They are the soft shoulder and arms that wrap around a friend in need. No matter what size you are, I hope you'll find the confidence to be like the larger woman at the pool, focusing on having fun with her family rather than worrying so much about her appearance that both she and her child miss out on a wonderful time.

2 comments:

Lynn Daniels said...

BRAVO!!!

*cheer* *wild applause*

Thank you so much for saying this. We're so bombarded by the images from Hollywood and on the magazine covers, it's easy to forget that *they're* the freaks. Not us.

I admit to being guilty of subscription to the "never wear a swimsuit again" club, and even made comments about being fat. Until one day my son told me he needed to lose weight. He's seven. And not the least bit overweight. I knew then it was time to watch what I was saying. My own body image needs help, but I don't need to be passing those insecurities down to my kids.

Danica/Dream said...

Lynn, kids give us great perspective, don't they?