I know some of you will read this blog, and say ‘Huh? What is she talking about?!’ A fellow student (who’s like my twin, but we’ve never met) is writing an essay on body image, and that got me thinking…
While being overweight isn’t healthy, of course it isn’t!, it’s not only the obese that have issues with self image. After all, look at all the supermodels; Victoria’s Secret and runway. They aren’t Marilyn Monroe remakes. Let’s face it, women. The era of the hour-glass is gone. The time of the stick is at hand.
I was the stick in high school, at a whopping 118 lbs, and I pretty much stayed that way until my late 20’s/ early 30’s. It wasn’t as glamorous as you might think. I still had my fair share of struggles; blood pressure that was so low on the ‘normal’ scale that one more point would have dipped me into the danger zone, constant dizziness due to low iron, and don’t even get me started on constantly hearing ‘You’re so thin!’ As if that was the ultimate compliment. In high school, boys don’t want the ‘fat chicks’, but guess what? They don’t want the ‘stick chicks’, either.
Now it’s 25+ years past high school, and two kids later. Plus a husband who loves to cook. Yeah, I’m no longer stick thin. But I still get the ‘Why don’t you see yourself as beautiful? If you exercise and/or diet, there won’t be anything left!’ Well, guess what? That’s not helpful. I look in the mirror and I don’t see a thin woman. I see a woman with curves in all the wrong places. I see a stomach that’s not flat anymore, and thighs that are larger than they used to be. I’m not brave enough to stand naked front of the bathroom mirror and really look at myself; tell myself I’m beautiful and blessed. ‘Cause guess what? I’m still the same shy, insecure bibliophile I was in high school and 90% of my good self esteem comes from the look in my husband’s eyes when he gazes at me.
We all suffer from self image, and too underweight is just as bad as too overweight. It’s just a matter of flippin’ the coin over.