I met with a client yesterday and much of her story resonated with me… we both have been on “diets” and the quest for weight loss since before we were 10. We both had mamas that struggled with their weight. We both have 2 little girls that we will give anything, ANYTHING to not pass these body-image issue onto!
Through this whole process I have never said I am on a “diet”… I try my best to not moralize food… we don’t say certain foods are “bad” for you or “good” for you… we just talk about healthy choices. I also try very hard to let my kids follow their hunger cues…. But there are things that are far more important than this…. They are watching and listening. They see me look at myself in the mirror, they watch me step on the scale…. they listen to me talk to my friends… and as my husband says
“little cabbages have big ears…”
In just a few years time my influence on my daughters when it comes to body image will no longer be as substantial as their friends or the media so I have some work to do and I think it is of the utmost importance that they learn from a woman who feels good about her body and her appearance – but it’s a fine line too right? I want to send the message loud and clear to them that what they look like is just about the smallest part of being a WHOLE good person.
They are listening mamas… but not to the lip service you pay them when you are making their lunches or choosing a snack… They watch you get ready for a date with their Dad, they see you turn and turn in front of the mirror and then frown, they hear you say the “F” word to your friends (FAT)….
If I succeed at one thing in my life – giving my girls a healthy attitude about their bodies would make me so proud… Listen to yourself today, watch yourself today… Could you do things differently?
It’s just a sandwich…. but is the bread gluten free with grains sprouted from the wings of angels, is the meat preservative/cruelty free and blessed by the Pope, is the lettuce organic free-trade and kissed by leprechauns by the light of the full moon??? Come on… just make your freakin’ sandwich!
First, no disrespect to individuals who make choices with their food based on dietary sensitivities or any other reasons… I am, however, tired of all the self-righteous morality surrounding food that I believe is perpetuated by the food industry. It’s like someone said “let’s confuse the fuck out of them and see what happens” … The irony that our culture is by far the fattest it has ever been speaks to this point. I think so many people are getting caught up in so many choices that in the end they are tired and frustrated and just reach for whatever is convenient. The food industry is on to this (I guess maybe because they started this) and they have tap-danced on this confusion until you choose what you think is healthy AND it’s convenient. I mean, have you been in a the yogourt section lately? That’s another blog post all together but let me just say this…. if it tastes too good to be true… you should probably check how much sugar is in it!
*You seriously need a degree in chemistry to make the right choice!
I got a little caught up in this rat race when my oldest was an infant…. I made all of her baby food from scratch with only organic fruits and veggies (which I still maintain is not a big deal – it’s not hard to throw some stuff in a blender) and continued to feed her this way (she didn’t have fast food before she was 2) until I was pregnant with baby number 2…. then I got tired, and pukey, and a little more tired. I started buying more convenient food that could be warmed in the microwave. Guess what? She is still alive!!
This post is NOT intended to discourage people from making healthy choices for their families…. 95% of the food we eat everyday is homemade from scratch (including the muffins or cookies put in lunch kits)… I’ve just climbed on down from my high horse and recognize that putting this level of morality around food got me in a whole lot of trouble. I placed too much importance on food in my life… and suddenly when I wasn’t able to make the “right” and “moral” choices about food I felt very guilty and shameful… about the fucking Alpha-getti. I really believed that this less than favourable choice defined me as a mother.
This year, on my journey with Goodbye My Muffintop I have acknowledged what I was giving food too much power. If I couldn’t make choices that I considered “perfect” – I would really beat myself up about it – and then, ironically, the shame would lead to binging on really “immoral” food. Now, we just try to make the best possible choices, we eat when we are hungry (easier said than done) and we stop when we are satisfied (easier said than done)… Now, my days are not filled with constant obsession about what I am going to eat and when I am going to eat it. I feel FREE! Hmm… think I’ll go have a sandwich.