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Monday, February 23, 2015

do you ever wonder….?

 

 

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I wish I had thrown out the bathroom scale at age 16.

Weighing yourself every morning is like waking up and asking Dick Cheney to validate

your sense of inner worth.

I wish I had known that I was beautiful by my 20s

and that what makes a body so lovely is Self-love and Care

smoothing delicious lotions

onto your thighs like a gentle yet ferociously committed mother would.

I wish I had not felt so shy and self conscious in a swimsuit

all those years,

because I don’t look quite as much like Brigitte Bardot or Sofia Vergara as I hoped.

I wish I had plunged into even more oceans and swimming pools than I did,

in front of God and who-cares-who-else.”

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‘I wish’ by one of my favorite authors Anne Lamott

 

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"There's this youth culture [...] it really discards people once they reach a certain age. I actually think that people are so powerful and interesting - women, especially - when they reach my age. We've got so much to say, but popular culture is so reductive that we just talk about whether we've got wrinkles, or whether we've put on weight or lost weight, or whether we've changed our hairstyle. I just find that so shallow." ~Annie Lennox, turning 60.

 

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"I don't work out. I am fatter than any movie star you have ever met.

But, you know, I don't care!"

Meryl Streep

 

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Do you ever wonder …

why the nicest compliment we can pay another woman is telling her that she looks like she’s lost weight?

 

 


 

posted in honor of National Eating Disorder Awareness Week

February 22-28   2015

 

 

17 comments:

Simply LKJ said...

Thanks for sharing Leslie. When you raise daughters and find them saying things that you've said to yourself, and it bothers you then...it does cause one to stop and ponder why we do it to ourselves.

Kim Gibson said...

Oh, I LOVE this post! Amen! Thank you.

Cindy Hattersley said...

I never do that because I honestly don't notice things like that I have to say. Maybe that isn't a good thing but I am always the last person to notice that someone has lost weight. I am more apt to notice if she is wearing a flattering color (maybe it is the decorator in me!)

simone antoniazzi said...

Great post Leslie.

My daughter is so conscious of her size & shape, it makes me really sad, I am very aware of what I do & don't say in front of her.

Your post made me think of Nora Ephron's fabulous quote....

“Oh, how I regret not having worn a bikini for the entire year I was twenty-six. If anyone young is reading this, go, right this minute, put on a bikini, and don't take it off until you're thirty-four.”

― Nora Ephron, I Feel Bad about My Neck: And Other Thoughts on Being a Woman

Sarah said...

Thanks, Leslie. You've done it again. Your posts are always excellent. You hit the mark!

Linda @ Itsy Bits And Pieces said...

Wow this is great, Leslie...I particularly love the JK Rowling quote. And for me, it's about being healthy...no scale here.

michele said...

anne is my favorite and the reason i am not sure i will ever let another human read a future manuscript because it will never approach that degree of awesomeness. i love what she said in a recent interview. something like 'look, i PLANNED to work out after i had a child...i just never got around to it...' i love that she swims every chance she gets because she doesn't 'have that kind of time.'

i can't imagine ever complimenting another soul's weight or weight loss and have often been hurt by comments about my own when it's low. because of chronic illness, i know some specifics about weight. like that a person my height must weigh 94 lbs or less to truly escape muffintop in low rise jeans. i wish we (and i) could care more about the fact our bodies are somehow able to shelter and nourish little human beings living inside them. that those teeny earthlings started out as microscopic eggs floating inside us even as we still floated in our mama's womb. i wish we could acknowledge the frackin amazingness of what our bodies DO, ENDURE, and GIVE. and how we repay them that miracle by despising, mistrusting, punishing, and squeezing them into jeans to minimize their presence. yes, your post mayyyyyybe opens some things up. thank you for that. xox

Karen said...

Leslie,
Thanks, I needed this. I'm on a business trip and while at a very nice restaurant for dinner with two work associates in their early twenties, I was taken back by the waiter who implied I might be dining with my granddaughters. The waiter was close to my age and it bothered me...until I realized I didn't really care. Tomorrow is my 42nd wedding anniversary, I'm happy and blessed with a lovely family and good friends, I'm who I am, wrinkles and all...we need to let this ridiculous focus on appearance go.
Thank you.
Karen

Leslie said...

Meryl Streep's comment made me smile. I believe more of the Hollywood folks are speaking up about this. It was SO awful during the Marilyn Monroe days as stimulates were commonly prescribed for wait loss and in natural course .. depressants followed. When I was working as a Nutritionist in a Medical Center in L.A. I worked in tandem with therapist and psychiatrists to help women with eating disorders. I once had a women come into my office and ask me how she could take her vitamins {around her purging episodes} to maximize absorption. Unfortunately women/men with a true eating disorder (not a disordered eating pattern) suffer LONG term and are very difficult to help.

Having raised a daughter I will tell you I had a lot to say to her about being healthy verses skinny. We also talked about social norms and what constitutes true beauty in a woman. The best thing a woman can do for her daughter is set a good example.

Okay, I can go on forever about this topic ..off to work! xxL

Carla from The River said...

Thank you. This is so good and so true. And I had someone say that to me not so long ago. "You have lost weight!!" It is a battle and it is wonderful to just be comfortable with who you are, if you can do it. Sadly, it can be such a battle. ;-(

Jennifer Connolly said...

Insightful and oh so poignant. Women are cruel to each other, even when they think they're being kind!!
I don't work out either and love what Meryl has to say on the subject. Bravo and thanks for posting this.
Enjoy your week!
xx Jennifer

Tami said...

Absolutely. I do so agree with you.

Nancy {at} powellbrower at home said...

Wonderful post. You nailed it on the head. xo Nancy

Julie Taylor and Danni Greenwalt said...

Great post....your so right about the culture we live in...if your over 50 you must not be able to think anymore! It does make me a little irritated! Now on weight...I had to go on a special diet for health reasons and I lost 20 pounds...I had a lady come up to me and tell me I looked awful...I'm wondering if she would of done the same if I had gained weight...we cant worry about what some think or say....you just have to live your life and find the humor in things...

Cathi said...

I honestly hate that when people say that to me - it feels very insincere to me. Many many years ago, someone told me that I had a beautiful smile - now even though my teeth aren't picture perfect that made me feel so good and to this day - I love to smile. In my younger days I was so super skinny and felt fat. Now I just want to maintain my health, it doesn't matter to me if I'm super skinny or not. That's the beauty about getting older, we don't sweat the small stuff anymore. Who has time for that! Great post Leslie! xxoo

Donna@anangloinquébec said...

It is too bad that we have to get some years behind us to understand all this misplaced attention and to recognize that it is worth so little in the grand scheme of things.
I hope that my daughter at 23 and her friends and peers are able to know this sooner than I did. But, I don't believe that will necessarily be the case. I think that for everyone of us who recognize the absurdity and hollow praise that comes from comments about ones weight or looks, well, there is equally somebody else out there that feeds off of that type of praise and searches it out.

I guess the thing is that we just need to pass on our beliefs about what true beauty is and about what counts and matters in life to hope that our children balance out the other half or third or whatever the percentage is.

I sound somewhat cynical and I apologize but I think that people like yourself, and all your followers I imagine, recognize that life is made up so many different elements that are so much more than the shape, size and looks of an individual.

I feel more "beautiful" now than I felt in my younger years and I think that is because I have so much more confidence. No, I am not wearing a bikini to the beach but I wear clothing with a greater sense of confidence than I did in my youth.

I guess I relate most to Meryl Streep....maybe it is all simply because, "I don't care".

Leena Milligan Lanteigne said...

I have no idea but one of the things that really gets me is that when they say it, they act like they're doing you some big favor! I have dealt with this my entire life and have never figured out why my weight seems to be the entire world's business! And, it really is aimed at women more than men. Would you walk up to a man and tell him that it looks like he's lost a few more hairs off his balding head? Of course not LOL! I could go on and on, but I won't :) Hugs, Leena

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