Body image

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Several of the blogs I follow have been talking about body image just lately, and how important it is to have a good one. Here, we have shamelessly rounded thighs, here sexy jiggliness, something sad but hopeful here, and one of the better improvement strategies here. And if you think that I’m dangling all these great posts – that will make you laugh, touch your heart and inspire you – in an effort to distract you from my own contribution to the topic, you’re probably right.

A couple days ago I gave Himself a pretty cool camera. (It was our anniversary, and his birthday’s coming up, and what the heck, he’s a nice guy.) He’s a talented photographer, often reminisces about his time as president of the photographic club at his school, but for all the years we’ve been married he’s been making do with a series of mik-en-druks. It was only recently that I became aware that this was a real but unspoken longing, so I did something about it.

A happy Himself promptly spent several hours bebopping around the house figuring out how it worked. Obviously, that entailed photographing everything that entered his new viewfinder. He was absolutely thrilled by the quality of the images. “Look how clear the detail is, even when I expand the picture to the max!” he exclaimed.

Yeah. That’s some detail there, alrighty…

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So tell me … how the fuck does one have a “positive body image” over that?

I want to blame somebody. Maybe I should sue the chocolate companies – they know that shit is addictive. That’s why even Hershey is a sweet stock on the market – and their so-called chocolate is disgusting. (Sorry, but it really is. Don’t argue with the connoisseur.) If cigarette companies must pay for people who die from smoking, then clearly same penalty should apply to the pushers of chocolate, candy, cookies, cream cakes,  ice cream, cream cheese, artisan bread, real butter, peanut butter … oh good grief, someone stop me, because even with those horrible knees up on my monitor right in front of me as I write this, I want to eat something, and I’m not fantasizing about celery sticks either. Not unless they’re sliced and lightly fried and incorporated into a cream sauce, anyway.

So … what to do? The last post I wrote on the topic of My Fatness ended on an optimistic note – diet and exercise and yadda yadda yadda. It sounded great, but it didn’t go well.

Today I got up onto my bathroom scale and … there was this sort of ouchie noise, and then – I swear I am not making this up – the scale wailed, “I give up! I’ll tell you whatever you want to know! Just Please Stop Standing On Me!” And numbers flashed and glowed and it told me that in 24 hours I’d shed 36.4 pounds. So I got off, pondered a bit, picked it up and shook it a little, and stood on it again.

“Okay, okay, you knew I was lying – how about 16.2 lbs? Maybe 23.4? Too much – right – not convincing – okay – 8 lbs? Just a nice round 8.0 – you can believe that, right?”

Not really. Plus, it said “round” and presented me with a number that is essentially a bulgy torso and a blob. I think that damn scale is trying to mess with my head.

Your turn … Do you have any addictions that nobody else takes seriously? And are they killing you too?

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About Belladonna Took

Into my second half-century and still trying to figure out what to be when I grow up. Born South African, naturalized American, at constant risk of losing my balance and landing ass-first in the Atlantic. A wife, a mom, a daughter and sister, kind of a grandma. Until recently a full-time dog rescuer, now more concerned with rescuing myself. User of dog hair as accessory, decor and garnish. Technical writer, strategic thinker, occasional entrepreneur. Voiceless poet and storyteller. Born again Christ-follower and former missionary schoolteacher chewing on some uncomfortable questions. Ignorer of rules, challenger of assumptions, believer in miracles. Skeptical libertarian, equal opportunity despiser of politicians and assholes. Gonnabe gardener, wannabe beekeeper, Monsanto-hating tree-hugger. Morbidly obese chocaholic, with a horse I don't ride because I might break him, and if not he would probably break me.

14 responses »

  1. I make fun of my pain but you do it in a much funnier way. I love your sense of humor. I wish I could be happy with my extra 70lbs but alas… 70 or 20 overweight…I will never be happy. Really great post.

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    • Hi, Hasty – thanks so much for stopping by! And thank you for the encouraging words. I have to confess, when I was writing this post in my head it was so hilarious (well, I thought so!) it had me chuckling out loud right up to the point that I started writing. At that point it magically transformed itself into a rant of self-hatred, self-pity and blame. I had to stop and go off for a little bit of a sob and a quiet read before I came back to it. I’m glad you found the end result funny … because although there is nothing, nothing, NOTHING funny about obesity – screw the myth of the jolly fat lady; the unicorn popped her – I’m honestly more bewildered than anything else by what I’ve done to myself, and continue to do. And rather than navel-gazing, I’m more interested in figuring out how to get a grip and, finally, take control of my body and my life, and allow myself to be happy. For some reason, reading what people like you have to say helps – so thank you….:)

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  2. I’m not good at talking about body image. I really need to formulate more cohesive thoughts… Because I have my own issues and have struggled with weight, insecurity, blah blah plenty of times. Even in the footage of the BlogHer video we made, I’m like wwwwhhhhyyyyyy do my arms look so jiggly, my waste so thick, my this so that? But screw that. I had a hell of a time and my on-again-off-again double chin had nothing to do with it. I’m trying to separate my self-worth and my identity from my physical appearance as much as possible because it can be a fickle beast and I don’t want to rely on it in order to keep being who I am. That probably doesn’t make sense and this isn’t helpful at all… I do want to write about this topic in the future. I just need to think more.

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    • I so understand that! All my life I’ve been looking at pictures of me and going “Ugh – oh dear.” And now I look at ones that distressed me so much 20 years ago and I think, “If only I could be there again!” It’s almost as though something inside me – an alien invader, not a true part of me – has been driving me to keep pushing the limit, seeing how bad I can get. And for what? I don’t know, I just wish I knew how to make it STOP.

      For the record, not that I expect you to believe me, you’re gorgeous. I’ve seen the pictures you post that aren’t especially “flattering”, and still you’re lush, clear-skinned and glowing. I hope you can learn to see that and love it in yourself too!

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  3. Oh my dear, that’s it, our next social campaign… make the chocolate companies pay! I concur and support you in your journey to health and happiness as that is what it’s all about… it’s not about being thin, it’s about being healthy. And it’s important to keep moving which I know you do. I just don’t want to repeat mistakes I see in my own family when people not much older than you stop moving. Anyway, I’ll sign your petition to Hersheys… although their symphony bars are like crack. Their chocolate isn’t worth much so maybe it’s the toffee? It’s a mystery, but bottom line, we’ll bring them to their knees! Also along this random string of thoughts, as long as your partner finds you sexy, isn’t that a large part of it? And if he doesn’t appreciate you, I’m sure there are many people out there who would dig what you’re cooking 😉

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    • Not interested in petitioning Hershey’s. Based on the quality of their chocolate (excluding Symphony bars, of course) they have no soul. These are people who intentionally produce something that looks and smells “melt-in-your-mouth good” – but have you ever tried to make actual Hershey’s chocolate actually melt in your mouth? It does not. It dissolves a bit, but in the end you’re left with a mouthful of nasty waxy stuff. It’s no more chocolate than fat-free cream is cream.

      No, the only solution is to sue them. We should retain the lawyer who won the case for that woman who bought a hot coffee from McDonald’s, put it between her legs, drove over a bump, and was surprised by the fact that the stuff that slopped all over her was hot. She got a million bucks! If that lawyer isn’t available, we can try the one who won the case for the woman who sued a store after she broke her ankle when she tripped over some out-of-control small kid (who was HER kid). Or maybe Erin Brokovich. Whoever …. I think we should sue, and not settle for anything less than a lifetime supply of chocolate.

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  4. Pingback: Daniel diet: Day 1 | American Soustannie

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