Until recently that was my stock answer for every person who asked my age.
I’m not, but somehow the doctor checking my moles at my annual checkup, believed me and wrote that down on my forms.
🤔 Also the policeman ( …long story!)
Actually I’m 43. Or 44. I don’t count the candles anymore.
I have GREAT genes! The combination of every race known to mankind has to have some benefit, right?
I have some African, some from”the islands”,some Middle Eastern,some Far Eastern and some European in my veins. This might explain my love for croissants and wine with ERRYTHING!
I’m a Francophile. Unabashedly. The fact that all I’ve ever seen of France are pictures, is besides the point. Why am I so bemused by the French?
The French believe that age is irrelevant.
Don’t look at the wrinkles, just move further from the mirror.
The French have a natural approach to life and ageing that I find appealing. They enjoy food without worrying about getting fat because they’ll probably walk everywhere for the rest of the day. They look after their skin with creams and potions. They don’t try to be perfect.
They accept that imperfections make one unique and that celebrating that singularity is what makes one beautiful.
I like that.
That’s probably why I haven’t had my teeth straightened. Or my tummy tucked. Or my moles removed. Or my bingo wings clipped.
Instead, I look after my teeth with fancy toothpastes and brushes, wear the Suck-Me-Tights, plaster the sunscreen religiously and wear the sleeveless everything.
Because I’m me. And I’m goddamned perfect!
Before I was so accepting ( A. K. A all my life), I was paranoid. I told myself:
1. You really shouldn’t smile so much. People might see your teeth.
2. Your skin would look so much better without the moles and pigmentation. Start saving for laser treatment.
3. Feel the burn. The pain means the fat in your tummy is “burning away”!
4. Buy the horrendous 3/4 sleeve top in the colour of puke. It covers the ugly, swingy part of your arms.
Then I had a daughter. To me, she’s perfect.
Long, lean legs. Amazing bush of hair. Awesome smile and beautiful, caramel skin.
One day this conversation happened:
Me: What ARE you doing? ( she was inserting the balloons from her 5th birthday party the day before into her PJs)
G: I want to see what I will look like when I have boobies and a butt like you, mommy.
Me: (horrified whisper) But why?!
G: Because you are perfect.
I hugged the bejaysus outta her and said,”Thank you!”.
Thank you for helping me realise I AM perfect.
Thank you for scaring me into realising my inner voice will determine what your inner voice will be.
Thank you for accepting me, and loving me when I couldn’t/ wouldn’t /didn’t love myself.
Thank you for NOT listening to the way I spoke about myself, my body, when you were within earshot.
Thank you. Thank you. THANK YOU!
So now what?
I had to change EVERYTHING!
- I stopped criticizing other women in the street, on TV, in magazines because their bodies weren’t perfect.
- I stopped buying fashion magazines depicting photoshopped versions of women.
- I stopped criticizing myself whenever I felt down.
- I stopped buying clothing that didn’t fit because I wanted to hide the multitude of perceived sins on my body and started buying things that actually made me look and feel good. Great,even!
- I started exercising and eating better not because I hated my body and wanted to change it, but because I loved it and wanted it strong and healthy.
- I gave my body it’s due. It had been through some battles, had the scars to prove it and STILL was kicking ass.
- I stopped following crazy skinny models and celebs on IG, FB and so on and sought the Ashley Graham’s, Tanesha Awashti’s and Shea’s of the real world.
- I started having conversations about how women’s bodies are to be worshipped for all that it is and can be, instead of being shamed for what it isn’t.
- I started reading anything and everything about self love and body confidence and passing on tit-bits to G.
- I was willing to get naked, with the lights on(!) with hubby…#ImReal.
This journey isn’t over.
I have good days and bad days.
I have fat days and slim days.
I will never be 100% confident in a swimsuit or skimpy lingerie.
But everytime I start to have that conversation with myself, I look down and see who’s listening.
Until next I blog,