Thursday, June 28, 2018


The ideal shape of the female form has changed a lot during my lifetime. When I was a kid in the '80s it was all about Jane Fonda's Original Workout. Thin and toned with tits, that's what we were supposed to want to look like. By the time I became a teenager in the '90s, the "supermodel" had been born. If we couldn't manage to waif our bodies into the Kate Moss prototype, we at least had the decency to shoot for the slightly more sultry, if equally hard to achieve, Linda Evangelista. Then Jennifer Lopez blew everything up with what, at the time, was considered a rather large rump. Hip hop rapped about the glory of big booties and small boobies. It was the first time I became aware of how valuable diversity in the feminine aesthetic truly is.

So much has changed since last century. Now women get implants in both their boobs and their butts. The plus-size model isn't only for the plus-size catalog anymore, if season sixteen of Project Runway was any indication. Women are lifting weights on their quest to obtain both strength and health. I know that was my impetus when I started weightlifting in 2013, and it revitalized my life. It also, inadvertently, dropped me into a size six. Although I weighed close to 150 pounds, all that muscle made me appear smaller than I'd ever been in my adult life. It was glorious. I looked great, I felt great, and my fibro was darn near in "remission." Then the grand relapse of 2015 happened. Too fatigued to even drive to the gym, let alone complete a workout, exercise was one of the first things I lost.

It was a brilliant idea to get rid of all my larger clothing when I was sliding into that six, let me tell you, because today I'm back in a size ten. My arms no longer have visible muscles, just a thin layer of cellulite. I'm wearing a Brazilian waist trainer when I go out, which does a reasonably good job of squeezing my belly fat into both my boobs and my butt. But seriously, I'm struggling. When I look in the mirror I see a woman who used to look good and, sadly, just don't no more. What's worse is I've allowed it to affect my self-esteem. Deeply. I'm trying to accept the concept that I'm supposed to love my body regardless of her size. It's hard. Ashley Graham is my spirit guide on this journey. Every time she posts a size-sixteen bikini or lingerie pic on Instagram, I study it. For a girl who grew up being told Heidi Klum was "the body," my attempt to normalize what I see is a work in progress. However, the irony isn't lost on me that I'm in awe of Ashley's radiance because it comes straight from her sense of self-confidence.

Thanks for joining,


  1. I'm so interested to read your story with your body and fibromyalgia. Sorry about that dreaded relapse when everything was going so well. It's very sad that we, as women, are all given these bad unrealistic ideals to love up to. I feel bad too about my body image because I have no control and am so different than I use to be. I have never heard of Ashley Graham but will definitely be checking her out. Thanks for your honesty. I would love you to link up your post at the Fibro Friday link up

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