So. I’m going to
climb up on my soap box here go off topic here today. I won’t do it often, because I want you to come back but I think this deserves discussion.
There’s lots of buzz out in the world wide web this week regarding women’s bodies, women’s perception of their bodies and what people think is acceptable or not. Make no mistake, people are opinionated about this and not many seem to be shying away from throwing in their two cents on the subject. It started earlier in the week when I saw this…
Fitness and beauty pageant competitor Maria Kang posted this photo on her FaceBook page and it went viral. People Lost. Their. Minds. over this. Women by the thousands commented on different sites, mostly outraged. “My excuse is cancer, you thoughtless idiot.” “My excuse is being a widow with 5 children living paycheck to paycheck, thanks for making me feel like a failure.” The comments went on and on…being a parent without money to buy healthier foods or a gym membership. Being ill, being too strapped for time or cash.
It was the “What’s your excuse” that seemed to tick people off the most, and I have to agree..it wasn’t motivational to me at all. It was “Look at me and then look at you.” Whatevs..just my opinion. But this brought up a lot of my own personal thoughts women’s bodies.
As a mother of two girls, it’s always been very important to me to show them that while being healthy is important (duh), you have to be happy with yourself on the inside. I have stressed that we are beautiful, and healthy and if other people don’t like the way someone looks, that’s their problem, not ours. I tell them that some of the prettiest people I have met are the ugliest on the inside.
I have never, ever moaned or pulled my hair out over weight in front of my kids. And until we moved in with Mark this past summer, I have never had a scale. (I don’t know why he has one, either) I have never shied away from throwing on a swimsuit and jumping in the water with my kids. What do I care what someone thinks about me? Do I have a gut? You bet. I live in yoga pants and leggings, elastic waistbands are my best friends. Am I model thin? Hahahahahaha…that would be a no. I am 5’8″ and look like the County potato picker that I am on my mother’s side, and the German farmer from my father’s. My genes scream, “Hardy peasant stock”.
But do you know what? I love my body. I am beautiful, strong, tall and healthy and that’s all my kids will ever hear from me. Madeline at 10 knows that so many of the magazine covers we’re bombarded with in the stores and online aren’t realistic or healthy. It thrills me to hear her say that she loves her long legs and how fast they let her run, or when she says that she would never care what size someone is, because that’s not what makes them who they are. Hallee, my oldest who is autistic and could care less about weight, looks at herself in the mirror and says, “I am pretty!”. Because that’s what I tell her. They are beautiful, inside and out. I want them to see what they ARE…not what other people think they should be. Raising girls with healthy bodies and healthy self-esteem is hard work, yo.
Then today, I see this online…
Melissa McCarthy on he first cover of Elle. What the what? Why do they have Girlfriend in a coat that could cover up two of her? I adore this lady. She is crazy talented and gorgeous to boot. The backlash was immediate and loud. Elle has already put out a damage-control statement saying that they had no intention of trying to cover her up..that their stylists worked with Melissa to find a great look. Mmm-kay. I think I see a bit of skin on her neck and maybe a tiny bit of knee? Let’s take a peek at some previous Elle covers, shall we?
Again..to me it’s saying being bigger than a size 2 is not OK. We think Melissa McCarthy is great, but here, Honey..hold this tarp-sized coat closed over yourself. They had a shot to show the world that a woman who isn’t a size 2 or smaller belonged on the cover of their magazine without being draped to her kneecaps and blew it. Who knows..maybe they did a whole roll of film with her in a bathing suit or a strappy little dress and it just didn’t make the issue? I’m guessing not, but whatevs.