After a nice weekend last November, I was in Denver, Colorado for the Davis Phinney’s Victory Summit, and I got to visit an old friend. As we sat down for breakfast to catch up, I was happy to hear that we both have had a great year of good health. The only catch is that along with a great year, came weight gain. Due to situations out of our control, we had given up being thin for a good quality of life.
Something disturbing is that we both admitted to having the most compliments from others at our lowest weight. When I was wearing a size 2, I had many people saying how great I looked. I graciously accepted their kind words, knowing how wrong it truly was. I was malnourished which led to my hair thinning and my nails breaking, but to others I looked the best I ever had!
As a child growing up, I remember thinking that Barbie was the ideal vision of beauty. With her amazing hair, tiny waist, perfect breasts (her lack of nipples seemed totally normal), and her long, sleek legs and pointed toes perfect for gallivanting around with Ken in his convertible. She seemed perfect and had everything from the cool friends, designer clothes, awesome boyfriend, all the way to her pink dreamhouse! What girl didn’t want to be like her?
So now, jumping to present day…I have noticed I have gained weight and others have commented on it. But the ironic thing is that I am the healthiest I have been for quiet sometime! Despite my last medical setback, I had officially been out of the hospital for one year, which had not happened in the last 10 years of my life. I am able to tolerate most foods and medications (not to mention my nails and hair are freakishly stunning). But how is it that others viewed me more attractive when I was at my worst health?
This is due to the unrealistic view of beauty that society pushes on woman. You will not see many woman like myself with scars all over their bodies and a few extra pounds on the cover of magazines posing as the ultimate vision of perfection. We are forced to believe that Barbie is the perception of beauty. I wish I could change the way woman think; so we believe that being healthy was the definition of beauty, but I know that this is a war that I will not win. So I will leave you all with one question…
If Barbie is so popular, why do you have to buy her friends?