When Good Isn't Good enough

posted by Lindsay Watts -

Being a girl of "shape" I have long coveted the effortlessness of those who are blessed with naturally skinny frames to wear cute clothes that just don't look right on a girl with a pear shape. Or I have long admired those with the particular drive to watch their bodies with the rigger of immigration when it come to calories.  But it wasn't until recently, when talking to my husband, that i realized how much girls (or at least me) think about trying to change their bodies. 

One night over the weekend I was starring at my phone and my husband casually glanced over to see what had me so preoccupied. He then asked, somewhat uncomfortably, why he saw a half naked girl on the screen.  I rolled my eyes and showed him the screen. It was one of those before and after pictures of a young girl who had lost 20lbs using which ever fad diet I was reading about. She was in her bra and under wear sporting a grin in the after and a lumpy frown in the before. He then shook his head and said that he wanted me to know he found me sexy just the way I was. I know, I have a good husband. I really do.  But this affirmation irked me. Of course he was suppose to say that. It's like parents telling a kid they're really good at art. It might not be the truth but proximity to the subject makes them bias. I waved him off like I have done with all the affirmations before it. Then stopped; 2 things....

First. I am really lucky to have a man who, time and time again, reminds me I am beautiful and sexy. Even more, I'm lucky to have a man that says this after, time and time again of, me shrugging him off. However, I was also really shocked to see the look on his face when I showed him what I was looking at. It read something like "Again??" and then "That's what you do with your spare time?" I may have put words...on his face? I have been "dieting" for as long as I have know the man. (I assume this is pretty much the same for most women out there)  But especially in the past couple of months. I buy food I think will help me eat healthy, I set up our basement into a home gym, I religiously walk the dog and still when I step on the scale I see no progress. My clothes still fit the same and my face is as round and pudgy as ever. Like a lot of women, in pop culture anyway, I dream of the girl I was at eighteen. Heck, I'll take the pizza eating and beer consuming gremlin I was in college that could still fit into size 8 jeans. I know the problem is I reward myself with good food and wine to celebrate victories and console myself with junk food. The "band wagon" is more of an Uber than my main mode of transportation. So, when I first read Josh's expression I felt embarrassed. Like, yes, I know this is something you see me constantly fail at yet i'm still trying hopelessly to get it turned around. But that wasn't what he thought, at all. 

Second. Yes, That is how i spend my spare time. Looking up; what exactly the Keto diet it is, how can you make apple cider vinegar taste less shitty, how much water do i have to drink to lose a couple pounds per week. And I know, I am not alone. Yes, I maybe be a little more transfixed than others but Pintrest is literally built off my type of necrotic. Girls who want to improve their bodies because for one reason or another we don't feel good in our own skin. I have tried the whole "self love" thing and found it was just as hard and rewarding as dieting. So given the choice, I chose to work hard on changing than work hard on being okay with standing still...I'm just wired that way. Books have been written, speeches given, conferences held and charities started on this topic. I am really surprised a ring wasn't forged that we could throw into mount doom and be done with the whole thing. In that aspect, men have it right. My husband was honestly shocked that this is the way I spend my free time. Consumed with the thought of "how can I be skinnier." Partially, because he sees me as a strong, beautiful person and partially because, guys just don't. He admits sometimes he wishes he was a little leaner. Maybe a little more muscular. But his frame doesn't necessarily play into his self worth.  

Women and men are just different in that aspect. I know from the time I wake up until the time I lay down at night my mind is chewing on something. News articles, facebook posts, what i'm getting my sister for her birthday, reminding myself to check the toilet paper stock when i get home and not forgetting to clean the kitty litter!!! Women are hard wired to be "on the go" And it's not all bad. Harnessing that for the good has benefited many world leaders and soccer moms alike. Just like your body you just have give it the right stuff to chew on.  

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