Sunday, April 11, 2010

Sweet guts o' mine


-Is my hair frizzy?
-Do I look fat in this?
-Is that a wrinkle?
-Why don't I have ANYTHING to wear?
-Is she mad at me?
-My stupid nose! (I broke it a few summers ago, it's slightly crooked now. I'm sure you all have noticed.)

Funny how times change. Now I am more into topics like:
-Are my organs functioning?
-How big are my cancerous tumors today?

And, getting down to the more fancy-free worries:
-Do I have ANY summer shirts or sundresses that will cover this ugly, bulging port they put in me?
-Neil, mind if I go shopping?

Plus!: Instead of worrying about the shape of my schnoz, now I wonder if it's dripping blood down my face while I'm telling a story.

I bring all this up NOT to complain or to draw sympathy (the idea of that makes me barf), but to point out a curious shift in my thought processes. I now have TREMENDOUS gratitude for things I used to take completely for granted, like properly functioning intestines. Lungs with great capacity! Blood counts high enough for me to feel energetic and happy! I consciously think about what a great job my body does. By simply functioning (and well), it makes me so grateful. So grateful that I think about it pretty often. I even sometimes hug myself over it. (Seriously. I've done it more than once. Mostly when I'm sitting on the floor. Arms around knees.)

When you think about it that way, who cares what shirt you picked out today. Who cares if you look a little chubby.

It's kind of liberating, actually.

This all came to me while I was in the fitting room last week, trying on clothes. I saw a few thin young women totally fretting about how "fat" they looked in their clothes. I kept telling them they were wrong, and to buy those pants, for sure. They tuned me out (In retrospect, I was probably creeping them out. "Who's that girl in room #4? She keeps telling me how hot I look.") But it made me sad. Their unfounded worries were actually turning their fun girls' day into a depressing affair.

Well, aren't I all Gloria Steinem today.

I know none of this is groundbreaking thinking. But if you're gonna worry, make it about something IMPORTANT. I wish people would be kinder to themselves. You look great, you aren't too fat, people like you. Your guts are humming along like clockwork. Give yourself an "A+" for the day.


  1. Thank you, Shelly! You are so right! I have found myself getting really caught up with some very minor 'worries' lately and this post just helped me get my perspective back in line. IN short, you just made my day :) Hope things are going well for you too today.

  2. You just made me smile. Thank you!