There’s an awesome new narrative brewing in the public square.
Female celebrities, recently body-shamed for *minor* weight gains have chosen to push back; to drop the veil at the intersection of body image & happiness.
“[My daughter] Willow said to me the other day whilst grabbing my belly — ‘mama-why r u so squishy?’ And I said..’b/cuz I’m happy baby,'” – Pink
Who also said “I am perfectly fine, perfectly happy, and my healthy, voluptuous and crazy strong body is having some much deserved time off.”
“I am not pregnant, I am just happy.” – Tia Mowry
Do those statements make the sonic boom in your head that they do in mine?
These are women in the business of Flawless Public Image. And look! They not only chose happiness over ‘Flawless’, they stood up and said so!
‘There is nothing wrong. I’m not pregnant. I have not Let Myself Go. I’m happy.’
Subtext: Don’t let the radiant red carpet smile fool you. Skinniest Me Is Unhappy.
As I learned when I first stepped away from my lowest Goal Weight and intentionally gained weight, a pin thin Goal Weight can be the enemy of happiness.
The struggle to reach my Goal Weight attacked my happiness every bit as much as my struggles with obesity.
Don’t get me wrong – I’m all for goal weights. They’re valuable tools in the fight for Healthy & Strong. Defeating obesity is always a good idea.
But I hope you’ll give your goals some room to breathe.
I often look at especially slender female celebrities and just want to hug them. Their bodies are under such heavy, loud, unyielding scrutiny. When they gain any weight at all, people notice. People comment. So, *generally speaking* they don’t let that happen. They fight every day to maintain a very narrow margin.
And that just hurts. That kind of pain needs a hug. It needs a break.
Tia Mowry and Pink probably knew they would hear about their sizes. But they chose happiness in their private lives over the pain of public opinion.
Their courage made them role models under a beautiful flag:
Assert your courage.
Share your truth.
Believe in the power of your light to pull others out of the darkness.
With that pep talk in the air, I will share these pictures of myself.
On the left, my ‘Goal Weight’ – the thinnest I have ever been.
On the right, pre-Happy Exhaustion days. I’m guessing probably around a size 12.
I fought hard for the size on the left. It’s what I thought I wanted, when I thought skinny meant happy. I was so wrong. I hope that picture doesn’t look like #Goals to you. I hope you see that it’s a picture of pain. My vice grip on skinny was strangling my happiness.
If you learn anything from my journey, I hope it will be this: No image is worth more than your happiness.
Care for your body. Care for your heart.
Run in the sunshine, and always aim for Size Happy.