The kids we all dream of having
“Flipping through the pictures on my phone, I see it. My first reaction is shock. Who took this hideous picture of me? Self-loathing and disgust swell up and threaten to bring me to tears. Just as I am about to hit delete, my boy walks in the room. ‘Do you know anything about this picture?’ I ask him. I turn the screen so he can see it. He smiles huge. ‘I took that of you in Tahoe,’ he says. ‘You looked so beautiful laying there. I couldn’t help it mom.’
“‘You need to ask me before using my phone to take pictures,’ I say. ‘I know,’ he says. ‘But mom, seriously, look how pretty you look?’ I look at the picture again and try to see what he sees.”
“My daughter walks over and takes a look. ‘That could be a postcard mom,’ she says smiling. ‘You’re so beautiful. I love it. I take a deep breath.”
“This is exactly what I needed. My default mode is to see and focus on the flaws and imperfections. I’m starting to see a bit more. I still see my dimply, fat thighs. I also see a mom collapsed on the shore that just explored the lake for hours with her children. I still see chubby arms. I also see the arms of a mom that just helped her kids across the rocks and hot sand so their feet wouldn’t hurt. I still see a fat woman wearing a black dress bathing suit to try to hide her weight issue. I also see an adventurous mom that loves her children something fierce.
“Like many women, I have struggled with my weight most of my life. It’s not something that will ever go away for me. I don’t have a naturally slim body. Never have. Right now I’m the heaviest I’ve been in 10 years. Yet…I have not let my weight stop me this time. I am wearing tank tops, sundresses and bathing suits in public. I’m running around playing with my kids this summer and I sometimes even feel attractive. Yes. You heard me. ‘I feel pretty. Oh so pretty. I feel pretty, and witty and bright.’ Well…not exactly. But something like that…”
“Is it because I’m getting older? Is it that I have more to worry about than just how I look? Or maybe it’s because my kids look at me with such adoring eyes. Really, it doesn’t matter. I don’t hate my body anymore. That’s huge for me to admit and hard to even wrap my mind around. I’m not giving up on exercising and getting healthy. Those are things I will continue to strive for because I want to be around awhile.”
“Right now though, I just want to love my body where it is. I want it to be OK to see myself the way my kids do. Thank you kids.”