This afternoon, my son went to his weekly nursery session and I had an interesting walk home after taking him there. First, I paid a visit to our rental agency, where they admired my little daughter and we shared a few jokes together. I then popped into a new cafe by the bus stop to try one of their fruit smoothies as a treat and got to know the owner, a nice smiley guy. After that, I went into Tesco and had a lovely chat with two of the women who work there, talking about our children and exchanging funny stories. On the way home, one of our downstairs neighbours passed us and we had a wave and a smile. I came home feeling confident and cheerful.
It was only as I got in the lift, with its mirrored wall that I realised that I had not once considered my weight or my figure. The feeling of not being constantly aware of it was liberating. In retrospect, I saw that the people I had chatted to had all been different sizes and shapes, but that hadn’t registered at the time either. They were funny and kind and relaxed and friendly and that’s what mattered to me, and made me feel funny and kind and relaxed and friendly. It only occurred to me when I got home that the really beautiful girl in Tesco could be considered slightly on the bigger side after I recalled something she’d said about my baby liking her ’round face’.
This ties in really well with another blog I read today, in which the writer confronted the difficulties of being both a feminist and the subject of an eating disorder. Whilst every bit of me wishes I could say I am totally at ease with my body, I have to admit I feel more confident when I’m slimmer and more toned. However, it doesn’t seem to make any difference to those who love me. And one of my favourite relatives, who is a brilliant, wise and funny friend sometimes says she experiences difficulties with her weight due to a long term disability, but it has simply no effect on the way I see her. I see her energy as a person, her spark and intelligence and life, her physique is way down on the list of things that make her special. My figure has changed and the number on my scales frequently changes but the way my family and friends react to me hasn’t. Their acceptance and love, no matter what my size is something I think I should extend to myself more often. I’ll keep looking for more positive images online to remind me of this. — BWG