Monday, July 21, 2008

Out of the mouths of babes...

This past Saturday I had the chance to baby-sit two beautiful little girls as a favor for a friend. They introduced me to shows and movies that-well let me just say, I would only watch again if a gun was pointed to my head (High School Musical, anyone?). At one point during the day, the youngest child, Ava who is 3 years old looked up at me and said "Dennise, you have fat legs". I was taken aback at first because she is so little but then I laughed it off and went on with whatever was going on.

When I got home that night, I recalled the statement and how I truly felt about it. I have always had a problem with my thighs; my legs are short and thick and my thighs especially seem to look thicker due to my height deficiency. In high school I don't think I ever donned a pair of shorts or a swimsuit because I was so self conscious about what people would think about my showing off my legs. Now that I'm 24 and on my own, I've realized that I've come a long way and become much more confident about my body. I will never be thin, I have come to terms with that and I'm ok with it. I realize that if I had been told by a child that I had "fat legs" 5 years ago I would have probably cried for a week and not brushed it off like I did Saturday.

Beautiful little Ava unfortunately still has to go through body self-awareness issues and I feel for her because by the time she gets to high school, I fear the world will be much more brutal than when I was that age.

I may not make much money or live in a beautiful house but I can look at myself in the mirror and be content with what I have and wear shorts and be comfortable. That to me, is priceless. I'm so glad, little Ava helped me see that.

(photo via ReyGuy on flickr)


Joanna Goddard said...

that is so fascinating. i had a similar experience. when i was at a summer ballet program (and of course feeling hyper-critical of my already too-skinny body), my little cousin, who was probably about 3 years old then, said, "Jo is fat." i'm sure he had just heard that line somewhere or maybe even picked up on my mom and aunt saying that i needed to GAIN weight.

still, i was sort of devastated by that comment. through my hazy self-perception, i thought babies told the truth and was worried for at least a week about whether he was right.

it sounds TOTALLY insane now, especially written down, but i've learned now that a) the world is so tough! there is way too much pressure on everyone when we are all so lovely and wonderful and warm and beautiful, and b) babies just say random stuff that they've heard around and you can pay them no notice!

love your blog,

Dennise said...

Joanna, you are amazing and my favorite blogger!