As a lark, I wrote this silly ditty about my hideous (to my mind) body. In my younger days it was simply known as “Removing Ribs or Your Skull — Whatever it Takes to Be Slim.” Nowadays they call it Body Dysmorphic Disorder. I sent the ditty to a health magazine that was looking for New Year’s Resolution stories. My take on a lifetime of starving myself was rewarded with a prize of about $400 worth of natural health and food products. I know, I know. The irony. Anyway, if you know a young woman who obsesses about her imperfect body, pass this along. Tell her not to wait until she’s in her sixties, like me, when she’ll no longer care about having the perfect body because she’ll be too busy cramming for her “finals.” Tell her to celebrate her body, pamper it, nourish it and be brutally honest — tell her she will never be perfect because no one is perfect. Well, except Cindy Crawford. She’s perfect. She’s soooo perfect. The Bad Viv wants to force feed her buckets of fudge cheesecake and chocolate eclairs until she breaks out in pimples, cellulite and Type 2 diabetes. But I digress …
For 40-plus years on January first
I resolved to lose weight, but my body was cursed
There’s always that 20 I think I must shed
But low and behold, it’s all in my head
It started in high school, no more and no less
No shame of my body, but the mind? What a mess
A skinny teen sneered, pointed and laughed
“Piano legs” she trilled, adding “and a fat ass.”
I reeled, embarrassed and to my dismay
I saw my reflection — no longer okay
Lettuce, boiled eggs begat famished, demented
I was skinny!
A lifelong obsession cemented
But no matter how slim, it just didn’t matter
I saw only my belly as my ankles grew fatter
Diet-fatigued, several decades later
I fired myself as my own body-hater
I resolved to eat whatever I liked
Good fats, avocados, peanut butter delights
Don’t forget the red wine, it’s good for the heart
Dark chocolate, fresh peaches, shrimp cocktail to start
Oh, I lamented, all the years that I squandered
My body was normal
I blinked, quite bewondered
And now, on my walks, I may glimpse the reflection
Of that healthy, old woman who won my affection.
Cover photo by Isi Parente on Unsplash “Girl in white holding plate”
2 thoughts on “Resolution Execution”
So true. We are so critical of ourselves when we are younger. (and boy would we give anything to have that young body back!) I too suffered as a teen and young adult with wanting to be thin. Now older it’s all I can do to keep it healthy. Thank you for this, I know I’m not alone.
I hope your health is good, my friend. I miss talking with you. You’re absolutely right, instead of wasting years chasing skinny, young women should chase healthy.