By Kelly Hines
Christmas is over, and the New Year is upon us; time to put away decorations and general feelings of goodwill. Time to stop focusing on things like helping our fellow man and concentrate on what’s really important – our weight.
My women friends are, almost without exception, incredibly apologetic about their weight. The overweight ones apologize for being overweight, the thin ones apologize for not being as thin as they used to be. We universally bemoan ‘the holidays’ as this terrible time when we are force fed delicious food and our pants get a little snug. We resolve, with the New Year, to get skinny, to get fit, to run a marathon, to go meatless, to eat organic, to cut out sugar, to take up yoga, to eliminate fast food, to tone up, to slim down, to do anything – anything – except just be who we are today.
Meanwhile our children, who think we are the most beautiful, the most wonderful, who delight in squishy bellies and sharp hip bones, are watching us with confusion as to why in the world we would want to change. They see us complaining about our thick thighs and look in the mirror and see those same thighs on their body and wonder if maybe they might need to change themselves, too.
This is my resolution for 2015: I am not going to talk about my appearance.
I have three children, two of them girls. One of them a teenager, who is in this delicate and weird stage of her life where her self esteem is as fragile as spun sugar. Where an innocent remark like, “I don’t think that shirt fits anymore, honey,” could send her into a tailspin. I spend a terrific amount of time encouraging healthy habits while telling her that her size does not determine her worth. I do all of this while beating myself up over the way I look.
This year, I’m going to keep my mouth shut. That doesn’t mean that I won’t stand in my closet and wish that yoga pants were acceptable for every social situation. It doesn’t mean that I won’t be irritated that the eyebrows I’m losing seem to be relocating to my chin. But I am going to try very, very hard to keep those things to myself. I’m going to eat good food and say nothing more than, “This is delicious.”
Let’s stop apologizing for who we are. If we want to get fit or lose weight or tone up, let’s stop talking about it and just do it. If we’re happy where we are, that’s great, too. Let’s take a good helping of our own advice this year and just be. Maybe, if we’re lucky, we’ll start looking in the mirror and seeing what our children see. And that’s beautiful.