‘Fat’ Mommy

by Grace Bon

So… I have a confession. The weight on my driver’s license? It’s wrong. Totally wrong. I no longer weigh 105 lbs. I know. Shocking, isn’t it? In fact, it’s been quite a few years since my weight has been 105. And I think part of me is in denial. Like, I think that somehow, someday, I’ll wake up and magically be 105 again. Honestly, I’d even settle for 110.

A few other moms and some friends have told me that I look fine, fantastic, even. And I’ll be honest─ I don’t really look all that bad. But I really miss those days when my jeans fit me just slightly loose and I didn’t feel like a sausage about to pop out of its casing. Or when my skirts didn’t ride up my backside. Or when my shirts didn’t ride up just because I’m walking.

It kind of irks me when celebrities have babies. It’s like they just want us to feel bad. Not only are they rich, but they’re now thinner than they were before they had kids! What’s really annoying is when the media tries to tell us that these celebs are “just like us.” They shop at Target! They take their kids to school! They have bad hair days! Guess what, people? ─ Celebs are not just like us. They have nannies. And personal trainers. In fact, they’re basically paid to look really beautiful, fabulous, and thin, and to ─ obviously ─ murder the self-esteem of the average non-celeb woman.

I didn’t really think about this a few years back, when my daughter was an infant. Because back then, on one of my very best days, I’d get a shower in! On one of my worst days? I’m a little embarrassed to say this, but I didn’t even get my face washed, nor did I get my teeth brushed. I know. Gross. Now that I don’t have a child attached to my breast, I have time to look in the mirror and actually ‘see’ myself. I’m not trying to look like one of the celebs, I’d settle for looking as I did a month before I got pregnant. I seriously have no idea why I was constantly just trying to lose 5 more lbs, but I was. I don’t know whether to blame my Psycho Ex-boyfriend or my Korean upbringing (Koreans are obsessed with calling their daughters/nieces ‘fat’… even when they’re far from being fat).

You’d think that at 33, I’d get over my negative body image and any irritating residual self-esteem issues from Psycho Ex or Crazy Relatives, but it seems to be worse than ever. I think I cared less in high school! And that’s when you’re supposed to be full of angst about how you look to others.
I suppose I could eat less and exercise more, but I actually exercise quite a bit. (Translation: At least 4 spin classes a week. I dare you to do one or two a week! Hehe.)  But I kind of love to eat, so exercise is okay, but dieting? Just out of the question.

I’d love to ‘just get over it’, and be confident and positive about how I look. I want my daughter, who’s now four years old, to be confident. I want her not care about how other people see her, because she’s a beautiful person inside. And I would love to be able to take my own advice. The only thing I can do is just not complain about it in front of her. Stand up straight and tall and fake like I think I’ve got it going on. Maybe that will help her to grow up knowing that she’s gorgeous. And maybe one day I’ll actually believe my own hype, not just for my daughter, but for myself.

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