Monday, September 14, 2009

The Plastics

This weekend was a hard one for me. I can live with being a "Football Widow," but this past weekend everything came to a head. I am not a fan of Fantasy Football, not because I actually hate the game of football, but because it is not just ONE team you have to watch. It's all of them (which translates to an entire day of football). It usually takes me a few weekends to make peace with this, then I'm done. I'm going to let it go after this. My husband also coaches high school football and honestly I like that he does this. Their first season game kicked off on Saturday. I love that he participates in the community and sets a good example for our kids. My kids also love that he's a coach. They can't wait to go to a game and be able to head down to the field during halftime to tell the world this is my dad.

Every mother wants their kids to be proud of them, especially when it comes to our little girls. We want them to be as proud of us as we are of them. We like to think that we are setting good examples for them on how to be good happy people. Out of the blue this weekend while my daughter was just sitting on my lap she said "Mommy, I hope when I grow up I never ever look like you because you are fat." I was speechless. For the first time in my life, I didn't know what to say. All I could initially muster up was "That's not very nice to say" at which she added "When I grow up I want to look like my Auntie L because she is so skinny." Auntie L, as I'll call her, is my skinny little sister who I think deep down thinks that overweight people are to be secretly judged. She's never said anything to me, but I hear what she says in passing to the skinny and even younger sister of ours.

That last part iced my cake. It's not like she said it to be mean, because we were just hanging out. She said it because that's what was on her mind as she sat on my lap. Did my sister subconsciously or worse consciously veer her on this path?? My daughter and I talked about it again at some length, but I don't think she really gets the magnitude of what she said. It's not that she just said it about me; I could get past this. It's that she is beginning to view people as skinny, normal and fat. I remembered that after I had the baby last year she asked me "Why are you bigger than the other mommies in my class?" I should have known right then and there that it's not just the kids in class that are making impressions on the kids.

Today was my son's first day of 4's preschool. He was so excited to be there. Thank God for him because he still loves me just the way I am. As I dropped my son off this morning I watched some ( I say some, because I know that normal ones exist and they don't deserve to be generalized in this batch) of the SAHM's gather with their designer stroller's in tow looking way to glam for preschool. I did not see one chubby or normal mom in the group--and I looked hard. The first thing that came to mind is "There are the Plastics" which for any of you who have watched "Mean Girls" know what I'm talking about. I bit my lip as I felt my eyes begin to swell. I hope my little boy just goes on playing right past the nonsense.

My mind was racing this weekend to find a way to combat this. I'm pretty sure this stuff isn't coming from home since we've made a pretty big effort at our house to NOT use the word fat to describe people... but what if somehow it is?? Then I thought maybe it's where I'm raising my kids. I like to think where we live is pretty normal, but I know it's not. There is a lot of money surrounding us and even in these tough times there are no shortages of designer jeans and fancy shoes lining the pickup lines for kids. Maybe we should pack it up and move deep into the valley away from everything.

Regardless of how I may be feeling about myself, all kids should know the joy of growing up without judgement; in a house where people love you for you and not for what you look like. They should also be focusing on happy and healthy versus skinny or fat. There is so much time in life to doubt yourself about the way you look and who you want to be...does it really need to start at 6!?

1 comment:

  1. to quote linda perry...."you are beautiful, no matter what they say...words can't bring you down..." it's starts inside of you. you're a good mom. hang in there.