Thursday, January 29, 2009

I Don't Know Why

I don't really know why I chose this picture.  I took it years ago at Moody Gardens in Galveston, TX.  Maybe I chose it because we are already thinking about a family vacation this summer.  We have to plan far, far, in advance, because the kids each have a week long church camp and Tom has a sports camp he attends as well.  
The kids have requested a trip to someplace with a beach.  Lee and I are tossing around locations at this point.  Wherever we go, me and a swimsuit will be involved.  That brings me to another, "I don't know why?"

At 43, I've mostly made peace with the way I look.  Mostly.  According to the health gurus, I could stand to lose about 15 lbs.  The AMA considers me overweight.  I should lose the weight for health reasons.  Vanity does not suit me.  I've come to the conclusion that I will never, ever, look 25 again, no matter how hard I try. 
Here's my dilemma.  Whenever I get around other women who spend hours a week at the gym and/or have had plastic surgery, I feel uncomfortable.  I feel fat.  I feel much less attractive. Suddenly, I have nothing to say.  I feel like when we're discussing things we do, that if working out, or biking or hiking aren't on my list, then there's something wrong with me.  What is wrong with me that I don't want to lose 15 lbs or do a triathalon, or hundreds of crunches or stop eating ice cream?  My head tells me "NOTHING", but my heart tells me "EVERYTHING".  By the way, these women do nothing and say nothing to make me feel this way. No little biting comments or put downs.

I know, that I am a good person .  I know I do important things in this world.  I do things for 'me', but getting skinnier just isn't one of them.  I don't know why I allow feelings of self-loathing to turn into a monster every time I'm around such women?
My two very best friends in the world are both thin.  They don't make me feel awful or even self conscious.  It's because they don't make a major production of anything they are doing to stay thin and they feel free to eat ice cream with me. One does work out every day, but it is purely for the health of her joints and bones.  

I don't know why I turn into a self-conscious teenager when I'm around women who constantly discuss/compare weight loss strategies or how many miles they biked this week.  I should be brighter than that.  Certainly I know that waist size does not make me more or less of a person.  Still.

Grace in Small Things #7
1. Spending alone time with Tom in the car
2. Watching the squirrels play
3. Having lunch with a friend
4. James asking if we got anything new or different from the CSA farm yesterday.
5. Lee asking how my time at the farm went. 


  1. Well, I think you've pretty clearly illustrated that women tend to be hardest on themselves. That even when no one is purposely slighting us, we still are so willing to feel slighted. What is that about? It's definitely something every woman should put at the top of her personal to-do list to work on and fight Life's too short to belittle ourselves and feel miserable. I loved your grace list...perspective on how good we have it is so warming.
    And, I don't know if you've noticed it or not, but I'm beginning to really notice that the women who have had "procedures" (mostly middle-aged women) have actually damaged their faces with procedures they thought were going to make them look younger. I don't envy them that at all.

  2. I was thin all my life until baby #2 and hit my 30's. I need to lose some weight. Do I WANT to lose some? lordy no! If I die next week, I'd regret time spent on the treadmill and that brownie I passed up.
    I like who I am and that person comes with a squishy tummy and a craving for brownies.
    I like who you are and 15 lbs wouldn't change that.

  3. Why are we all so obsessed with losing weight? Is it because society tells us we are fat or are we truly fat? I feel it is socity dictating how we are to look. I'm sorry I am not a size 0 nor will I ever be a size 0. Yes I am overweight but I am not going to give up enjoying life just to loose a couple of pounds. I like who I am and my husband loves me just the way I am and that is what really matters. Could I stand to lose some weight, yes. Am I trying, yes. Do I still enjoy a cookie or a brownie, yes. So just be yourself, CeeCee and enjoy life. It is too short. Besides we all like you for who you are and what you are.

  4. My self-image is totally whacked out so I try not to think about it. Denial is a wonderful thing.

    What I really came over here to say is, you must check this out - you'll be laughing and singing a funny little tune all day.

  5. I know what you mean but the only reason I am feeling the need to lose a few extra pounds is purely for health reasons. Joints are the main reason and of course worrying about things like diabetes and such. Plastic surgery....heck no! I earned every line and wrinkle and plan on showing them off. I agree. 15 pounds or not we like you for who you are not your weight.

  6. You all are right, but I don't know how to fight the "you're fat and therefore not pretty" feelings when I'm with skinny, workout, plastic surgery women.
    I was whining last night to Lee that every single weight loss commercial is aimed at women. He said that's because men don't buy into the diet plans---they eat right and exercise and drop weight like crazy. No man is going to take the Special K diet seriously. They just know if they have a cheeseburger and a beer that they'll have to lift more weights or run farther tomorrow.

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  8. Carla, I used to work in Newport Beach, CA doing make up - in a building that also was home to some very popular plastic- surgeons. There was a time when I went in for an "estimate"....which was somewhere in the $20k range (almost 20 years ago, in my twenties). I was dating a guy then that said "What if I don't like how you look after you get all that surgery?". That made me think. But then a best friend said "Wow. Twenty thousand dollars? Tracy, therapy is so much cheaper.".......and with that I realized at least 2 people I knew loved me exactly as my self and that was enough.

    Needless to say those feelings are resurfacing again now that I'm 42. I look in the mirror and I am not thrilled with what I see. And I spend more time in the face cream and potion aisle than any other aisle at the drug store....searching for "the one" that will stave off the inevitable. *sigh*

    And, I must add....the first thing I thought when I opened up your blog and saw that picture of you (to the right) was: "Wow. She's gorgeous!". Seriously.


  9. I'll admit, when Lee's co-workers wives were getting their 'additions', I thought about it. Then Lee wanted to know why he'd be attracted to fake body parts.

    Tracy, I find that I watch the TV commercials closely that have adds for a 'face lift in a bottle'. I then spend the money on the product and find that I'm just too darn lazy to keep up with the stuff.

    I'm beginning to think my wrinkles are earned. Still waiting to think my muffin-top is earned. :)