I hate Barbie! I could feel the rage building up inside me as I struggle to zip up a pair of sassy, yet sophisticated slacks. I am sucking my stomach in so hard, that angry tears run down my cheeks… not because I am crying… I am actually laughing. “Ha, Ha. Good one!” I have always fit into a size 6, and now my favorite clothing store has changed its sizing, just to mess with my head. Now, if I could only find a way to lay flat on the dressing room floor, I might be able to smush my slightly insulated tummy into the perfect-for-work pants.
An excitable sales woman comes to my dressing room door, knocks and says, “How are things working out for you in there?” Irritated, I respond, “Fine, if your pants didn’t run a size too small this season.” She says with a smile, “We haven’t changed our sizes, let me bring you an 8.” Before I can tell her she is crazy as a banana, a pair of pants fly over the door with a large “8” flashing on the tag. “Here you go!” she chirps. Well I guess I can amuse her. I peel off the pants that fit more like leggings, and put on the slacks and without a strain, pull up the zipper with ease. I began to get tunnel vision and feel light-headed. This could have been from the lack of oxygen getting to my brain while trying to morph myself thin. But that didn’t matter, because the truth hurts, I have gained weight.
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, hot boyfriend, all the way to her pink dreamhouse! What girl didn’t want to be like her?
So now, jumping to present day in the dressing room, I admit defeat…… I have gained weight. I feel bad about it. Frustrated. Inadequate. Unattractive. But why? I am healthy, besides the minor “DBS: The Sequel” setback, I am the strongest I have been for quiet sometime! I have a clean diet, (except for the occasional fro yo trip…don’t judge me) exercise regularly; I am able to tolerate most foods and medications (not to mention my nails and hair are freakishly stunning). But something is off. Why do I feel less attractive when I move up a size?
In 2010, with the stress of receiving a diagnosis of Parkinson’s and feeling nauseous from all the new medication changes, I dropped weight fast. It is disturbing that I got the most compliments from others at my lowest weight. I was wearing a size 2 and everyone was 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! So 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 women like myself that have 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 epitome 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?
*Click on the pictures for more “Barbie Up close” by Rehab.com