I have thought a great deal about weight lately and not only because of the reasons I explained in my last blog. It occurs to me what an weird issue weight plays in our lives. Back in the Victorian days and even before that, weight represented wealth and health in people. Weight meant you had delicious food on your table, that you were more likely to live through childbirth if you were a woman, and that you were rich. How funny that sometime in the early to mid 20th century Coco Chanel should come along and bring with her a woman’s desire to be skinny and tanned ( for white skin was in before that too). This desire continues into the modern-day although we as a society have begun to fight the love of skinny. For how many of us can actually be so statuesque and thin, for more than possibly our youth and young adulthood?
At the same time, I was always told by my mother and many women that men love curves and that is what they seek in a woman but I think that all depends on the man. I think every man has his ideal woman and the woman who becomes his partner may have those assets or she may look nothing like he thought his ideal mate would look. But while her man may consider her ‘his girl’ and just fantastic the way her body is, all woman tend to be sensitive about their weight at some time or another, even celebrities. Some women think they are too skinny, others think they are not skinny enough, yet others are unhappy about a particular body part such as their stomach, thighs, or arms.
And after thinking about all these ideas I concluded that it was wrong for me to say in my last post that it was a sham to believe that woman should ‘love their bodies’ despite that like me, they may not feel confident about their bodies at times. I think that last post written out of frustration forgot about posts I wrote earlier such as “Love The Skin You’re In” blog. The reality of life is that people both men and woman, are always going to have physical attributes about themselves that they don’t particularly like, whether they are models or you average woman looking after kids or going to work everyday. But this doesn’t mean that we shouldn’t
love ourselves anyways. I think it is the fact that we don’t like ourselves some or a lot of the time that leads us to have issues with other people and ourselves such as jealousy, depression, and anxiety. If we took the attitude that ‘this is my body and I’m going to love it anyways no matter what it looks like,’ a lot of us would have more confidence, feel more attractive, and be more attractive to other people because confidence is sexy. Loving yourself is not so much even about whats on the outside of your body but it does concern loving the outside of your body because you are extremely satisfied with yourself on the inside.
Being fat doesn’t make you a bad person and I think sometimes the media — movies, magazines, the internet — lead us to think that if we don’t look a certain way then we are a reprehensible person. But if you think about it in life, some of the people we love the most are our Uncles who are too fat, are Grandma’s who were nice and plump, are Dads who are losing hair, and our friends who have a big nose or large mouth. I even read the other day that ugly people are actually more memorable to us than attractive people. And not that these meaningful people to us are ugly. Instead because they are not perfect they are memorable and to us as children and adults who love them they are perfect in their imperfection. So how then can we consider ourselves unlovable or unimportant because we are not the ideal attractive person?
I have always sought to be a healthy person, especially after being considered chubby as a little kid. This was not because my parents fed me junk food but because kids on my Dad’s side of the family, tended to be chubby. So ever since that point I have tried to maintain a healthiness, though that has recently become difficult in the past few years. I was okay I think until I got past 25 years old and became more than 175 lbs. So, regretfully I settled at 191 lbs and then gratefully back to 181 lbs and now again back to 191 lbs. It is the fact that I am taking all these pills and that they cause weight gain, that I am unable to exercise due to illness, and that dieting is so tough, that I feel unhealthy. I can see it on my body that I am not at a healthy body weight but that does not mean I should not love that body and love myself even though I know changes need to be made in my lifestyle.
So instead of being helpless and feeling helpless, I think there are things we can do about our body issues to make life more tolerable
for us no matter the walls that block us from our goals. We can always try to eat more vegetables, to give up more junk food, and to walk around the block a couple of times or for 15 minutes. We can eat in moderation, and wear clothes that flatter our bodies, and we can remember that the people who love us do not love us for our outward appearance alone but mostly for our insides, for the way we treat them, and for our characters. We can alter ourselves for the better if we love ourselves and know that a few changes will make us healthier. But again, we need to remember that in health does not happiness lie alone.
Sometimes it is easier to see ourselves through the eyes of our loved ones. What really causes me to feel better about my weight is my boyfriend. I may tell him I put on a few pounds but he loves me anyways. He is still enamored of me, he still thinks I’m beautiful. And even though some woman in the car next to us may
stare at him or he may smile back at some girl who is giving him big eyes, he is always looking at me and asking if I’m okay. His eyes are on me and through him I have learnt to love myself because he is pleased with my hips, my stomach, my mind, and my heart. Sometimes it takes seeing yourself through someone else’s eyes to truly see yourself and that you are valuable just because you are you.