Thursday, April 28, 2011

Sigh...

... I'm fat. And even checking out my last post about the beauty of motherhood has not helped buoy my sour mood. Well, at first it did. But then, as I read the whole story on MSNBC, I let my eyes wander down to the comment section, and boom, I'm down again. Here's a couple of the worse:

"I can't/won't embrace it. It isn't attractive no matter what anyone says. And it also is not healthy to have all that fat around your middle... Flab is not attractive or something I am willing to die for."

"All i know is my wife is 5-1 and 105lbs, had 2 children, never got a stretch mark and was at her weight in a month after the babies. how did she manage that? well she exercised during her pregnancy, didn't over eat and used lots of lotion on her skin while she was growing her belly... once yoiu do that your going to have a scar and stomach bulge forever. motherhood does not mean you cant keep your bodies as they were but it is work." 

Okay, so let me state, most of the comments were in support of the website and it's mission to help encourage moms. Also, that there are some valid points in the above comments- women should work to take care of themselves by eating right and exercising. BUT... the fact that both commenters could care less that not everyone shrinks back to a size 2 (or might not have been a size 2 to begin with) made me sad. And lest you think it was simply a lack of comprehension, the first comment's writer repeatedly states she "gets the point", but feels the website makes things too easy for women.

 Me, last May.

Which got me thinking- in all honesty- are we fooling ourselves? While in real life, I have had a couple of friends and my husband repeatedly tell me how I look good (thanks Giddel, Clarissa & K). But I've also been told REPEATEDLY how huge I've gotten, how big my belly is, how puffy my face has become. My walk and movements are analyzed, and then I'm told "I'm waddling", "struggling to bend down" and "moving like an old pregnant lady", which confuses me because most pregnant women aren't old. At church, I've been labeled "the girl with the bump" by a few parishioners who find that phrase easier to say than "Alisha".

 Me, yesterday.

I have a sneaking suspicion that honestly, people do hold the amazing shrinking celebrities as realistic standards of how ALL women should look postpartum (well, actually, all of the time, before, during and after giving birth). And in my head, I'm not trying to look like Nicole Ritchie, just trying to cope with not looking like... me. Regular me.

It's funny how cutting off my relaxed hair and going natural have brought out similar feelings of insecurity. They both are forcing me to confront my own standards of what beautiful looks like. And honestly, that's long straight hair and still being able to fit into clothes in the juniors section (even if I don't actually get anything from it). So now, with my hair having shrunken into a crazed afro thanks to the unexpected warm temps and humidity, and my body having put on an extra 20 pounds (!!!), I'm literally fighting the voices in my head that sound like those MSNBC Newsvine commenters. I'm struggling to hold fast to the "see yourself as God sees you" message. But it's hard.

Double sigh.

5 comments:

Red Cardigan said...

Oh, Alisha!!

The older I get, the more I realize that what the culture thinks of as "beauty" is a Photoshopped fraud. We create impossibly thin, wrinkle-free, plastic dolls of perfection and then wonder why we feel so awful about weight gain or wrinkles or spider veins or any of the other real life imperfections of real women.

My mom, after nine children and in her sixties, barely weighs 100 pounds. My genetics are more like my dad's side of the family; I'm still carrying an extra twenty when my youngest baby is almost 13! Every woman is different, and beauty doesn't depend solely on a catalog of external ideals.

To your baby, yours will be the most beautiful face in the world. And that's what really matters!

Alisha De Freitas said...

Aww, Erin, your comment was so sweet. I really appreciate it. I think Z is the most beautiful face, and I've only seen it through sonogram, squished, lol!

Joseph Flemming said...

@Red Cardigan I agree 100%

@Alisha, your beautiful, and I can't wait until Z gets here! =)

Alisha De Freitas said...

Thanks,Big Bro!

Don said...

Co-sign your big bro's comments. I honestly do not see where the sigh comes from...

You are having a baby - that is a cause for everyday celebration, if you ask me.

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