Right in the middle of her forehead;
And when she was good, she was very, very good,
But when she was bad she was horrid.
Several folks lately have been posting photos of themselves as wee ones. I think it started with a challenge from Felicia. I couldn't resist getting in on the act! Luckily, my dear cousin Kristi gave me a scrapbook for my 50th birthday last year, which contained several photos to choose from. The one above is me circa 1958.
I heard that poem recited to me from the time I can remember. Yes, I have naturally curly hair, which was the bane of my existence most of my life, until I got smart and realized it was a gift. And guess where I got it from?
And then I started to grow up...
I've been thinking about Hanlie's comment on her post with her childhood photos, wondering what she would say to her younger self if she had the chance. I know I would like to somehow reach back in time, hug my little self, and say, "Yep, you're a little chubby. Don't worry about it: you're a terrific kid with so much to offer the world!" I know it's a tough lesson to teach a child, but some how I'd like little me to understand that she was good enough just as she was, extra pounds and all.When I look at that photo in retrospect, I know there was such a rough road ahead. I really internalized the cultural message that being fat was not ok, which meant that I was not ok. As I grew older, anorexia became more prevalent. I remember thinking when Karen Carpenter died, "You mean, women would rather die than look like me? I must be disgusting." I wish I could somehow help mini-me to understand that I was not my body, and that I was a talented, funny, loving and compassionate girl. I think had I been able to understand and accept this about myself, instead of hating myself for being fat, I may not have had the need to eat to fill up the holes in my very young heart.
But who knows? Maybe I would have over-eaten just because it all tasted so good!
What I do know is that being an overweight child, young adult, and grown-up person has formed the woman I am today. It's like the wrinkles on my face: every one of them came from an expereince that has shaped who and what I am. I still battle those extra pounds, and probably will for the rest of my life. But at least now I know that I'm ok, that I am good enough just as I am.
Until next time...