Let me just preface the preface by saying something that I will be glad to get off my chest; I am a nerd. I really am. My whole life, I have been a nerd stuck in a cool girl's body.
I really do feel much better now.
Now here is the preface. I was thinking about this old Batman TAS episode. (see? the nerd. she emerges with alacrity.) It was kind of deep, and that is why I carry my nerd card with pride. They are all kind of deep, the sci-fi shows and books that I love. They are a sort of fun house mirror of our lives that can tell it just how it is precisely because it takes place on such a different plane of existance, and--hey, you. Reader. Wake up! There will be a quiz on this afterwards!
Okay, I'll stop. (For now.) But the point is, I was staring at myself in the mirror, and sort of wistfully thinking about my pre-baby body, and maybe even thinking about my old one-stomach-crunch-per-calorie body from so long ago, and then I thought about the coming-out-of-the-cool-closet-to-flash-my-nerd-soul Batman TAS episode.
It was about this evil chick who went around kidnapping all of these heads of modelling companies. Turned out, she used to work for all of them, as a model, and was kicked out when she turned 30. Because she was too old and therefore not perfect.
She wore a mask and did not even let her evil minions see her face. When she was captured at the end, the police removed her mask, and she covered her face with her hands, screaming, "my face, my hideous face!"--but not before the veiwer caught a glimpse.
She was beautiful.
I guess the real question is, why do we do it to ourselves? It doesn't feel good. I don't like crying 10 minutes before candle lighting because I feel so fat in all of my clothing. I don't like crossing my hands over my body while talking to someone thinner than me.
I guess I know that people see me as a very pretty girl. When I was younger, it was the only sense of self that I had to cling to. But the second I am stressed, or feeling inadequate, presto-chango, I am Di The Horror Show. And I actually believe that if I would only lose 20 pounds, I would be this whole different person. A better mother, even. Instead of just the same person in a smaller body.
When I catch Princess watching at me as I am looking at myself, judging, I feel a wash of hot and cold. I need to break the cycle of senseless self-loathing. Even if I cannot understand it completely, I just need to stop. If not for me, than for the little 4 1/2 year old who wants to know what "baby fat" is, and if it's catchy.
Or I might don a mask and start kidnapping people. For kicks.