Tuesday, February 07, 2006


It's another night when I'm too tired to be sitting here trying to write, but I feel like I need to. It's just been on of those days. I woke up too late to do my morning pages for The Artist's Way, and I'd planned on doing my artist's date today. Those plans got scratched because the womanchild decided that she hates the dress we bought on Sunday. She had to find something else, and the shopping expedition was a miserable failure. I don't mind taking her shopping. I don't mind returning the dress we bought the other day. I just wasn't up to teenage drama, even though I got a very sweet and sincere apology later this evening. I don't mind doing things for my family, but I know that I need to draw firmer lines about plans I have for myself. That whole issue is one I'm definitely too tired to tackle tonight.

One of the things that I hate most about shopping is being faced with images of myself in the mirror. I was already tired when I left the house. My hair was pulled back in a clip, and I was wearing a loose and comfortable sweater and comfortable khakis. I felt decently and casually attired until I entered the dressing room to help my daughter with a zipper and saw Elephant Woman looking back at me. When the womanchild started airing her complaints about her body, it took tremendous self control not to join in with my own. I just sat there reminding myself that this body, even at its current size, even with all of its scars and flaws, is worth loving because it's home. I kept my mouth shut, but the affirmations didn't work.

I'd had a long day where I felt ineffective at times, and this sudden burst of self-consciousness added to that. Part of last week's ongoing training at work was on professional image, and I was told to kick it up a notch or two. My clothing was deemed fine and appropriate, but I needed to add more flair. Tonight the phrase "lipstick on a pig" keeps running through my mind.

It's times like this that I need to remind myself that results with changing a lifestyle take time. My food and exercise changes are not quick fixes. I need to remind myself that real beauty comes from within and that the truest beauty is the light that comes from God/dess.

So tonight, I'm down, but I'm not out. This vent has left me feeling much more relaxed, and I think that now I can really sleep. It's too cloudy to see any stars tonight, but I still have a wish. May everyone see the real beauty in themselves and their lives.


Blogger Vicky said...

My dear:

How honest you were this evening in your writing. How hard for you. How well I remember your proud and wonderful entry from way back when you celebrated your body, and went to such great and glorious lenghts about how you felt about who you are and what you look like. How I envied you when you wrote that! How I wanted to be able to celebrate my body the way you celebrated yours! But I couldn't. I looked in the mirror and hated what I saw. I still do (and please note that photo of mine is over a year old. and was designed to flatter).

Cynthia, my sweet, please go back and re-read your entry. Go back and re-live the celebration. Bring it into the present. You are a grand and glorious person, AND DON'T YOU EVER FORGET IT!!!

As for the womanchild: remember the child part of that nomenclature. She's still a kid, and in need of guidance. And quite capricious it seems, which is ok when you are a teenager. It goes with the territory. You are surviving her teenage years with sanity and savoir-faire. Keep it up!!

Love, Vicky xxx

February 07, 2006 11:19 PM  
Blogger ckays1967 said...

just sat there reminding myself that this body, even at its current size, even with all of its scars and flaws, is worth loving because it's home.

There is more in this line than you know...something that a child can not yet reach. She will. There is a peace in being comfortible in your own skin. Just remember that God does not make mistakes so you are perfect JUST the way you are.

Its all good.

February 08, 2006 12:08 AM  
Blogger Lisa :-] said...

I'm convinced that department store fitting rooms are absolutely the worst places in the world to look at yourself in a mirror. The lighting always sucks...makes you look like a consumptive about to breathe her last. And I think they do some kind of carnival thing to the mirrors...

(((((Cynthia))))) I have this image of you in my mind: a beautiful "woman of size" with lovely hair, meticulous clothes (though you wear too much black), and a deep, sultry southern voice that could melt the polar ice cap. If you "kick it up a notch," you might just go into orbit...

February 08, 2006 12:37 AM  
Blogger Judith HeartSong said...

what a good post..... male dominated culture has perpetuated a stereotype of what 'woman' should be. Think Mariah Carey, all jiggling breasts in high high heels that keep her from moving naturally.

Woman should be strong, and firmly seated in her 'self', wearing whatever pleases her at that moment... whether it is heavy boots or a comfie big sweater.

The women who are the most attractive are the ones who are pleasing themselves, not trying to fit into the mold of what society has deemed acceptable.

You Cynthia are Smart, Witty, Emotive, Kind, and are one of the most beautiful people I have ever known.

February 08, 2006 7:35 AM  
Blogger Celeste said...

Hey girl...I SOO understand "self priorities". I was able to walk 3.5 miles six days a week shortly before the holidays...I dropped 13 pounds in two weeks...just from walking...and I have hypothyroidism. Since then. we've all been trading colds, and of course the usual holiday interference. I've been down but not out too. Hang in there. Go take a walk...EVERY DAY. ;) C.

February 08, 2006 8:41 AM  
Blogger Paul said...

I feel a bit intrusive commenting here, but I wish you weren't so hard on yourself.

February 08, 2006 12:10 PM  
Blogger IndigoSunMoon said...

Old habits die hard Cynthia. Even though I've lost 120 pounds I still sometimes see the enormously fat woman in the mirror. I'm working on it, but it's still hard.

February 08, 2006 3:38 PM  
Blogger Theresa Williams said...

I love this entry, Cynthia. It's funny; I just posted a new entry on my blog, and I almost called it "body image," but changed it to "exile," because that is what it feels like when you don't feel right in your own body. You are so beautiful, in every way. Paul's comment was so sweet; he is right. We should be so hard on ourselves.

February 09, 2006 12:16 AM  
Blogger Theresa Williams said...

I meant to say we should NOT be so hard on ourselves. Sorry!

February 09, 2006 12:17 AM  
Blogger TJ said...

This body is home...I liked that. We are such an incrediable working machine.I mourn at times for that young women I once was...more then I should, I can't help myself. Everything has doubled even my nose! I guess I just have to accept that I am not going to be one who ages gracefully.The two year old grandson wanted to use my tummy scars for a hot wheel track which put a screaming holt to throwing him in the shower with me to rush things along so we could get going. I even vowed to hang out with even older and heavier people...fatten up the husband ANYTHING to make me feel smaller!
Now I am just trying to loose the rolls, one pound at a time...did I mention I dislike the BOWFLEX granny commercial? Hi, I am over 5o and you can have a bowflex body too! So is life...happy to be here. LOL!

February 09, 2006 6:40 AM  
Blogger dreaminglily said...

You're not the only one feeling that way lately. But I'm conquering it! I've started running every day and doing pilates (no so hard they kill you but enough to give you some sore muscles the next day). You can also note that the song that now plays on my journal is Fat Bottomed Girls by Queen lol I've decided to love my body and give it the treatment it deserves. Don't ask where this sudden change of mind came from. Let's just say I saw something the other day that scared me enough to change my mind set.

I know for a fact you are a beautiful woman. I can't remember what I was reading or watching or where I heard it, but I remember hearing something that struck me as incredibly true. When you get to know someone that looks beautiful but in reality is ugly on the inside, the longer you know them, the uglier they become. While someone you may not even have noticed before, after you get to know them and see how beautiful they are inside, become more and more beautiful outside to you.

I can safely say, Cynthia, you are a very beautiful woman. Someone I admire. Know that in your heart.


February 09, 2006 11:39 AM  
Blogger beths front porch said...

Cynthia, I kept thinking while reading this post: this is EVERYWOMAN. You have created a post to which we can all relate, about ourselves, parenting, the push and pull of love and ***ick** loathing. I giggled and my heart hurt. I could relate, is what I'm saying. Girl, you've got game. Beth

February 10, 2006 8:28 PM  
Blogger Jod{i} said...

Cynthia, as you know, I have struggled with this whole 40, the image of the number that I see and what others see and what others tell me they should see.
I too looked in the mirror just last night. It sent me reeling, all that chatter came back..because of an image a reflective image. I did everything I had been taught to whisk it away, to not get caught up.
I have begun a new dialogue with myself...One more positive yes, but that was always a given, yet one that states acceptance.
I feel this Cyn and have a comfort that these feelings are not mine alone// You are a beautiful woman.

February 11, 2006 6:45 AM  
Blogger Wenda said...

I am so glad you have said these painful thoughts out loud. I believe a lot of us, myself included, often suffer such pain in silence afraid of adding "self-loathing" or "self-pitying" to how we and others may judge us. I imagine such dark thoughts are better said than hidden away and festering.

A therapist once taught me an antidote for negative messages to myself, not a simple change from "I am ugly" to "I am beautiful" (which my negative thoughts will continue to argue), but instead to ask the question, "In what ways am I beautiful, or in what ways is my body beautiful?" That gets my mind busy on another track altogether, gathering evidence to support my beauty.

By now, antidote or not, I hope you are able to celebrate your beauty again.

February 12, 2006 11:01 PM  
Anonymous Anne/ksquester said...

Oh Sister dear, I do so admire you. Celebrate this day. I have to agree with Judi! Anne/ksquester

February 16, 2006 12:50 AM  

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