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Friday, 21 December 2007

Thin enough = happy enough

I have been reading your comments and posts about whether or not being thin makes you happy. I know (!) you are all waiting with baited breath to know my opinion.

First let me share with you today's events that have me wondering about this whole issue.

Today was the "last day of school" for the team I manage. So we spent the morning spring cleaning the office and our (well MY) desk and then headed out for lunch and a swim at the local pool.

One of my girls is only 24 and overweight. Not hugely obese, just a solid size 16. When we got to the pool she changed into her bathing suit -- a bikini.

I was wearing a bikini too, but I had spent this morning trying on every single one I own and looking at myself in disgust at how huge and blubbery I looked.

Bikini girl waltzed out of the changing room, jumped into the pool and then swanned around baking in the sun. Half way through the afternoon she treated herself to an icy pole iceblock. She had no issue with her body. I doubt how she looked even crossed her mind. It just wasn't relevant. She has true self confidence and self esteem.

I looked at her larger than 'normal' body sitting next to me, and felt a brief pang of envy. I am not always that confident. I have cellulite, I have stretch marks and elephant skin. I wasn't "allowed" an icy pole. She is more beautiful than me because she loves herself and is happy in her skin.

I have body image issues. My own personal standards of perfection (not those that I apply to other people) guarantee that I will never be thin enough, or muscly enough to be 'happy' with how I look. I don't expect any other 43 year old to look like a 20 year old genetically gifted fitness model, but I want it for myself.

But in some ways, Bikini Girl and I are alike. We are both happy inside no matter what the outside looks like, maybe in spite of it. She might think I am more beautiful than her because I'm 'petite' (her word for me). She might have the odd pang of envy too, but I bet it wouldn't last long!


  1. I wish I felt like Bikini Girl too, but sadly it's not in my psychi. So, we plod on with our diet and fitness routines.. and we will one day fit in a nice little coffin! I must admit this was one thing that motivated me to lose all my weight, the thought that it would take a super sized coffin and 12 pall bearers to bury me! Morbid stuff.

  2. Well she might be happy now but it may change when she's older? But then again it sounds as if she isn't worried and never will be, I think you have that image of yourself or you don't.

    I will always see myself as the fat huge chick no matter how thin I get?

    I think you have that way of thinking or you don't?

    But yes I will be happier thinner, not that Im unhappy with life now, just my self image..but then again will that ever change???

    sorry rambling....


  3. Hey Katie I am the same, so self conscious and always envious of those whom feel comfortable in their own skin like that.

  4. Hi there! I just stumbled onto your blog-hope you don't mind but I found this one interesting. My husband and I often question how fat people are so often just not caring how they look-in a sense it seems to me more that they just don't have any self-respect-and bikini girl will pay for it in later years-with diabetes or some heart problem-and probably end up sucking our tax dollars for her medical problems-and then die fairly early (how often do you see an 85 year old fat person?)
    Sorry about the mini rant!
    Hope your having a pleasant weekend!