Monday, November 05, 2012


My latest video diary - it's a naughty one.

You can download the music from this video
for free: "Requiem for a Fish"
by The Freak Fandango Orchestra
is licensed under a Creative Commons
Attribution-ShareAlike License.
I got out of bed this morning and before I made it across the bedroom floor and into the bathroom I was already thinking that I am too fat. I bring this up not because it's an extraordinary occurrence but because it happens nearly every morning. Even at forty-two years old. Even after cancer and a mastectomy and third place in a half-ironman.

The thought did not upset or derail me any more than a mundane grumble about the weather. It's just a familiar refrain, a background track to my morning routine, like wallpaper that I gaze at daily and never really see.

But for some reason this morning I did see.

You know how they say men think about sex every six minutes? Well I think it's a good bet women worry about the attractiveness of our bodies in about equal measure. I am absolutely sure I am not alone in this. It's obvious - just look at us! The lengths that many of us go to with hair and makeup and diet and exercise, or, for some of us, the lengths we go to to avoid noticing we have bodies at all. But we're constantly measuring our bodies against the women around us, women in movies, and, worst of all, airbrushed Scandinavian teenagers on billboards and in fashion magazines.

Yet we don't admit the full extent of the obsession, not even to ourselves much of the time because either we're so used to it that it doesn't occur to us that it could be different or we're ashamed that we're at all insecure about our attractiveness, or both.

I mean, we are intelligent beings with far more important and interesting things to tackle with our brilliant minds, aren't we? It follows that we might wonder if the fact that we are occupied with hating our thighs instead of, say, ending global poverty or taking charge of the environmental crisis means we are not so smart after all.

But then again, we were brilliant children too, and we understood at a very early age that thinner bodies are more highly valued in our society, especially if those bodies are fair-skinned, blonde, and blue-eyed. We got it that as we grew into adulthood the ease with which we might hold a spotlight in the biggest and even smallest arenas would be tied in the overwhelming majority of cases to whether or not we were considered desirable.

It's sexism, people, and we've internalized it.

In other words, we have been unintentionally brainwashed.

It's time to reclaim our minds and free our bodies from the scrutiny. We are beautiful, incredible beings. Let's treat ourselves accordingly.

1 comment:

Run for Chocolate said...

Thank you! I needed that reminder! xoxo!