Patterns, habits and long-term environments mold so much of who we are, but I’m convinced simple little encounters are powerful enough to change our outcome–for better or worse. Like this morning. As I was stepping out of the shower and scurrying to the bedroom to get dressed on time, my 4-year-old daughter made a comical observation. Giggling and wide-eyed, she pointed her little bird-like finger and said,
“Momma, your bottom SHAKES when you walk!”
Now, I could have responded with embarrassment, frustration, anger, or any combination of negative reactions. After all, as women we’re trained by society to do anything but embrace the jiggle. We’ve come so far with encouraging acceptance of fuller figures (and still have so far to go), but we rarely talk about the movement of these …
“Can I sit with you?”
My 4 y/o daughter sat on the bench of our dining set, eating a spaghetti lunch off a cream-colored Tupperware tray, her golden hair pulled back in a four-inch pony tail.
“Sure, mom. Sit by me.”
I sat down on the chair next to her, but not on the bench. She questioned my choice of seat.
“I don’t like getting off and on that bench, honey. Momma’s getting old,” I playfully told her.
She reached her delicate hand up to my face, and gently stroked the lines around my mouth.
“You’re not old mommy. Well, maybe a little here. But you’re not OLD.”
I smiled. My sweet, observant girl was growing up so fast.
“Mommy, why are you so big?”
I wasn’t sure what she meant. But as a woman, my initial thought was, “fat.” …
Retail therapy? More like I need therapy after this retail experience. (image from target-addict.com)
I remember noticing how beautiful the sky was behind the Target sign, and actually thinking to myself, “today will be a successful shopping day.” The automatic doors whooshed open as I entered the store, kid free. I felt good, light on my feet. Being alone will do that to you. I quickly found matching shoes for the girls (for an upcoming wedding), and decided to take a little “me” time to–dare I say–try on a few clothes. I can’t remember the last time I stepped foot in a dressing room. Think…think…think…nope, can’t remember.
As I headed over to hosiery to find some leggings, I passed the clearance bra rack. I backed up. After all, the last one I’d bought had a detachable front. …
The numbers boggled my mind.
Pencil skirts…low-rise ripped jeans…designer labels…
These styles seem like such a distant memory.
Piece by piece, I pulled items out of the blue plastic tub. Stale and wrinkled, they didn’t provide the fond memories I thought they would. Didn’t make me long for the days when I wore them with flair. I was thin. Very thin. But I didn’t know it at the time. I was insecure. I pinched every jiggle, willing it away. I worked out for hours, desperate to tone, trim, firm. I tried to catch every mirror I could, desperate to like what I saw. Most of the time, though, I didn’t.
Out of curiosity, I pulled one of the shirts over my head. “Medium. …
By society’s standards, I am not a stunning, beautiful woman. Don’t get me wrong, I don’t think I’m hideous. I can relate to this line from one of Gretchen Wilson’s honky-tonk tunes: “I may not be a ten, but the boys say I clean up good.” Give me a shower, some makeup and a flattering dress and I’m not too shabby.
No, I’m not fishing for compliments or affirmations of my appearance. Rather, this is a celebration of my imperfections. There are things on my body that are large when they’re supposed to be small (pores, nose, feet). And there are things on my body that are small when they’re supposed to be large (use your imagination).
But you know what? I’m glad. So glad that I …