As I survey my cushiony butt, I wonder to myself what it would have been like to have lived back in the Renaissance days?
Oh they liked their curvy girls back then.
Look at those mounded bellies! Cheesecake thighs everywhere!!
I would have fit right in.
There would have been no moaning and groaning over the scales. No squeezing into muffin-top jeans. I would have been armed with corsets and long voluminous skirts. Famous painters would have asked me to pose for them, because my hippy figure would have been perfect for their next great masterpiece (of course I would have politely declined, because cavorting in the altogether is not my idea of a fun time, especially in those chilly uninsulated Renaissance mansions).
When did skinny become the be-all-and-end-all of beauty?
Pretty recently, I'm thinking.
Who decided that gaunt and stick-like is desirable?
Who says that curvy girls should spend our lives trying to get rid of our roundness, denying ourselves the pleasure of eating delicious food, wasting time counting calories, boring our men with constant talk of diets and weight loss, making ourselves miserable by obsessing over one of the most natural parts of life: eating (and passing on our dangerous obsessions to our daughters who watch our every move).
Why should we curvy girls sit on the sidelines and watch our children splash in the water without us, because we're too embarrassed of our thighs to brave a swimsuit and the stares of others?
So what if our butts look a mile wide on a bicycle seat! Who's really looking anyway?? Why shouldn't we just get over our self-consciousness and ride, feel the wind in our faces, join in the fun of free wheeling with our kids...
It's Henri over at Marketing to Milk who got me thinking on this one. In her post she talked about an old woman she met who is in her eighties and still obsessing about her weight. At eighty! That really got me thinking.
Am I going to waste time and energy being unhappy with what I've got to work with, or am I going to be realistic about the body I'm left with after three jumbo babies have grown out of me?
What is beautiful anyway? We can't trust our culture to tell us. The fashion changes so often - Marilyn Monroe was the height of sexy in the 50's. These days she would have been told: "Sorry you're overweight, come back when you more closely resemble a stick."
So forget the media. Forget the magazines, the Filmstars, and pleasing Tyra.
What is beauty that will last?
Know any older women who radiate joy? I do. Sure they have wrinkles and you might not see them on any magazine covers, but oh they sparkle.