Monday, May 14, 2012

Honey, Do I Look Fat?

Whenever I pass magazine stands, I cannot help but to stop to check out cover girls and the headlines section. I have to say that, almost with no exception, women’s magazine covers invite us to look inside and find out about the best diet tips or the fastest way to get a swimsuit body. Who are they kidding, I always think. And yet, I check the articles and photographs of beautiful girls with flat abs in Salt swimsuits or Lulu Lemon fitness outfits. So why, after ages and ages of reading about weight loss and the greatest diets which we all know never work, do we still want to flip those pages.

I remember thinking about losing weight since I was barely a teenager. I lived in a different culture, time and society. We ate organic foods since there was no concept of non-organic foods; and fast food did not even exist!  So why was I thinking about losing weight? Was I fat? Was I unhealthy? Was I trying to live up to the image of “flawless” cover girls?

Luckily, I love food too much to diet.

Many years passed since then. Many pounds were gained and lost. And, finally, I became a proud owner of XS t-shirts and dresses. So why do I still ask Varuzh when I dress up to go out: “Honey, does this dress make me look fat?”  And why, if I eat a big dinner and too many chocolate chip cookies after that big dinner, do I feel guilty? I am pretty certain that no one would notice if I gained a pound, no one but me. But why am I so hard on myself? Am I shallow? Do I lack self-confidence?

Do you ever feel this way?

I have to thank one of my girlfriends for making me understand my own ridiculousness. She recently gave me a gift after returning from her trip to China. It was a silk pink pajama… size L.

“What?” I exclaimed. “Why would she get me a Large pajama?”

It took me about a month to finally take the pajama out of the box. And, to my horror, I discovered that pajama fit just right! But if I am a Chinese size L, what’s their XS?!? Have I been fooling myself that I am size XS. Was it just a trick the clothing companies play with women by changing the standards of sizes?

Finally, another month later, I got myself to wear this pajama and… fell in love with it. It was soft, silky and very pink. Just like I will never be able to give up food, I could not give up this pajama. I started wearing it all the time. After all, who cares if it is size L? And my parents can breathe with relief that I will not be trying to become Chinese XS. They firmly believe that a healthy woman should have a little bit of meat on her.

… And yet, if someone wants to get on my bad side, she could simply ask me if I have gained weight. Consider yourself warned!

Any thoughts? Would love to hear from you!

With love always,
xo, Zuma A

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