I Love My Body…



I have always had a very positive view of my fully clothed body.  The odd moments I catch myself naked in a mirror I am surprised by how tall and lean I am even without the camouflaging effect of skinny jeans and close fitting t-shirts.  These accidental mirror encounters make me feel better about my tummy pooching ever so slightly in front of me while I sit hunched over my computer writing yet another article!

My weight fluctuates by about 10 lbs, unless I am pregnant, which I was for 36 months in my younger years!  My mother and I always weighed about the same and she would haul me off to the bathroom every time I visited to check poundage, always subtracting a generous 7 for the togs I was wearing.

Ten years ago when my girls began to worship at the shrine of the bathroom scale I threw them away.  Size and how one feels are so much more important than pesky numbers on a screen that may or may not be accurate depending on the time of day being stood upon or surface on which it is balanced.

My mother, surprisingly, couldn’t wear any of my clothes, she insisted on a sensible size 14 for her slacks, blouses and coats while I was a 10 which became a perfect size 8 on my removal to America.

I have never artificially enhanced my body.  Back in the day, the Twiggy day, I was at a boarding school with vast numbers of pre-pubescent girls and refused to wear the popular elastic corset suspenders my mother sent me to keep my stockings up and my tummy flat.  What are stomach muscles for if not to naturally control my coveted flat tummy?  A poochy belly was the consequence when I couldn’t be bothered to pull in!

The only thing I wasn’t 100% on board with about my appearance was the boring colour of my eyes, not a soft grey like my Mum’s, or an icy blue like my hubs’, or a beguiling green/grey/hazel like my daughter’s.  In time I grew to like brown…

I have good genes and can work wonders with them by keeping in shape, wearing well cut clothes, not being overly critical of what I can’t control and sort of watching what I eat.  When I reach for a snack, fruit and plain yogurt have as much appeal as a Mars bar or a bag of crisps, a digestive biscuit with a hunk of cheese or a quickly made salad with lemon juice.

Unlike my mother who barely waved her knife and fork over her Sunday lunch with us, I have always sat down with my children to eat as much as, and often more than, them.  When they were toddlers this wasn’t a distinguishing achievement, now they are in their twenties it is quite astonishing.

I eat organically (and I’m not meaning how my food is grown) when my stomach starts to growl, or when I begin to crave something.  I munch on what  I fancy, often, wherever and whenever.

My favourite eating places are in the kitchen leaning against a counter chatting with my teacher daughter, or al fresco in the late English summer evenings enjoying the company of an orange sunset, a crisp glass of Pinot Grigot and hubs.  Utterly delightful!

I love my food and have taught my children to take risks with culinary experimentation and indulge in lavishly presented meals.  My sons send me pictures of their creations, dishes they’ve made for themselves from scratch, including the pasta, bread and sauces!

Both my daughters, fortunately, have the same genes as I do.  My oldest, a teacher and certified lifeguard, prefers the loose clothing like my Mum and is happiest in a swimsuit.  She lives by the beach.

My youngest, a dancer and living with me in England, is hungry all the time eating every two hours like a newborn.  As long as she is working it off with her contemporary, modern, jazz and ballet she can get away with eating pretty much anything, and she does!  Her favourite hobby when she comes home is to photograph her modest portioned meal alongside my generous plate to illustrate the imbalance of food distribution in her mother’s house.  My meals last me longer than 2 hours!

Food plays an important role in our lives, why reduce satisfying moments of camaraderie with family and friends to hastily quaffed glasses of Slim-Fast ?

Love your body, indulge it with food, reward it with a walk, clothe it tastefully and embrace the you in your genes!

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