Shannon Bradley- Colleary
Aging vaintress, wife dominatrix, mom butler and humble author who is slightly mustachioed
This weekend I laterally passed my husband all my kid obligations and ran off with my two oldest friends (though not actually old — old is 96 in my book) for a mom’s weekend to Palm Springs where we proceeded to do wild things. Like nap. And drink. And nap. And shop. And nap. And eat pastries. And nap. Oh yes, this is a descent story where we tapped into our dark sides. And napped.
But here’s the thing about women. We never shut up about how fat we are. You could play zydeco on our ribs and we’d still think we were fat. This is what we sounded like this weekend, “When I bend over can you see the jelly rolls on my stomach?” “Could you do a lunar landing on the cheesy side of my ass?” “Do I have little back fat sausages I can’t see in this top?” “Can you see the chafing where my thighs rub together in this bathing suit?” “Do my earlobes appear to be hanging lower since I gained ten pounds?” “Yes I care about the ozone, terrorists, hermaphrodite sex slave traders and Obama’s policy on Syria, but if you were a man would you find me deliciosa?”
I bet you anything Joan of Arc was distracted in battle if her armor felt too tight.
Tiresome. I’d love to be a person who practices self-love by aspiring to be beautiful on the inside, but who am I kidding? I want to be beautiful on the outside, too. Perhaps this makes me guilty of the three Vs: Vanity, Vapidity and Vancancy (of the soul), but I’ve seen evidence that even the brightest among us still want to be appreciated for their beauty. Just ask Dr. Peggy Drexler who wrote “Smart Women Want To Be Told They’re Pretty Too,”a meditation on the sexy image in Vanity Fair’s September issue of Yahoo CEO Marissa Mayer lying upside down on a chaise lounge in a figure flattering blue Michael Kors dress. And has anyone seen an unattractive photo of Facebook COO Sheryl Sandberg of Lean Infame? I don’t think so.
So I’m getting behind my quest to feel beautiful. The latest weapon in my aresenal? I’ve decided that every time the critical voice of my Body Dysmorphic Disorder kicks in I’m going to take a flattering photo of myself (no more nudes) and post it on Facebook so all my friends, especially the ones on my payroll, will tell me how great I look and my ego can be assuaged and for just one day I can look at that photo and KNOW that I’m not as unattractive as I think I am because that’s just the BDD talking.
(I feel particularly self-conscious in swimsuits, but I’ve perfected the straight forward shot, hands at waist, right knee nipped-in pose, which is most flattering)
I can look at that photo and all of my dear friends’ kind words and feel beautiful, healthy, strong and just okay. And okay is good.
(A flattering photo with my fellow BDD sufferers.)
What are your radical self-love covert ops?