Eat the Cookie

I don’t want to be the woman who has to lose 10 pounds. I’ve known women who “want to lose 10 pounds” for 10+ years.

I don’t want to deprive myself a cookie.

I don’t want to pinch my midsection in the mirror. I won’t do it.

Yet, here I am, skin between my fingers.

I won’t pull on my face, this way, that way. Watching the history that’s written on my face disappear for one superficial moment.

Most of the time I am not that woman, but I am not entirely immune to societal expectations. But, what are my expectations?

We must be skinny. No, no, no that’s not “in” anymore. We must be strong. Strong is the new skinny. Curvy, but not too curvy. Healthy, yes, healthy. Anyway, I definitely should not eat that cookie.

Has social media really made self-image worst? No, it’s our heritage, tradition, culture. We inherit our body obsession like the fattening family recipes we serve our husbands but never and I mean NEVER should eat ourselves.

Both of my grandmothers were thin, elegant, and beautiful. One had five children, the other six. Even after all of those children their waists still looked corseted. They made delicious pies, but I don’t recall them ever taking a bite.

Scrambling around the dinner table was the woman’s place. Never eating there, getting her fill. No, my grandmother would drink her coffee black. No sugar. No cream. Smoking a cigarette. This was expected.

I want my portion. Most of the time I take it. Sometimes I take more than my share and I’m back to measuring my sin with pinching fingers.

I remember a time when I had such restraint. Such control, but there was always a hunger.

How do I navigate these murky waters and lead a life where the scale doesn’t measure my worth? More important how do I steer my daughter away from an inheritance of self scrutiny?

If I talk about food and weight am I preaching? If I don’t broach the subject am I neglectful? What of my son? Men too are not immune from the warped looking-glass.

Everything in moderation I suppose.

-Rachel McKee

Author: Rachel McKee

I love reading about everything. I'm not a book snob. Lately I have been "reading" a lot of picture books to my toddler and baby. In my past life before motherhood, I was a professional technical editor and writer.

16 thoughts on “Eat the Cookie”

  1. As long as you are comfortable in your own skin, in my opinion that’s all that should matter. If we wasted all our time conforming to society’s arbitrary aesthetic “standards” (if they could even be called that) we’d be very unhappy people indeed. I mean, even me – “they” say men’s shorts should not be above the knee. I obviously disagree!

    As long as you’re content with how you look, I think that’s what matters. Note this is not to downplay the health risks of morbid obesity, but my concern for those patients has nothing at all to do with physical appearance but everything to do with one’s health and well-being, and that goes for both genders.

    Of course, take this with a grain of salt – I’m someone who used to be bordering on morbidly obese. I’m about 80 pounds lighter now than I am when I was my heaviest, and I’m still no skinny mini at all. Actually, a point of self-conscience for me is still taking my shirt off. You have no clue how scary it was for me to pose shirtless in my DD’s tutorial post. Haha!

    Nonetheless, we’d be very boring and miserable people if we deprived ourselves all the time. We need to get what we want sometimes. Actually in a way it’s a good thing because it keeps your metabolism a kick in the pants. If you deprive yourself all the time your metabolism does slow and that’s when you “plateau.” Just a little FYI for anyone reading – something I learned in my own personal weight loss journey.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. How are you able to write so well and so much in such a short time?! Seriously your writing skills and accuracy blows my mind.

      For the most part like 90% of the time I’m happy in my own skin, but there are memories and traditions that haunt me at times. When demons rear their heads.
      Thank you as always for your thoughtful comment.😁

      Like

      1. I am a very fast typer (not tooting my own horn – just stating a fact) and I just think on the fly. Truth be told I don’t put much thought into it at all.

        Maybe it’s one of my “autistic superpowers?” Pretty much any autist has them.

        Liked by 2 people

  2. Hey Rachel, I can’t imagine that I’m quoting my boss outside of work hours, but here goes. One of his one-liners has always been that “we can’t shrink to brilliance”. Of course, he was talking about it in the context of business, but sometimes it’s just as applicable in life.
    Having said that, perhaps we can try to shrink that cookie and just get on with it! The jumbo sized “regular” option is perhaps America’s undoing to a certain extent (and of course, what America does we follow).
    Everything in moderation, Amen! (I gotta get up and hit on that cookie jar.)

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Oh of course enjoy the cookie! Just don’t eat all of em off the plate! Ha! I agree with everyone–moderation is the key. I’m still trying to lose…well…ten pounds1 Gaaaa! Here in the American South obesity is rampant and it kills…via diabetes, heart attacks and cancer. But then I’m talking about folks who eat fast food two or three times a day along with a few bags of chips at work.

    I mean what the heck, there’s plenty of things that can kill us, but food doesn’t have to be the one that punches our time card.

    My wife and I eat two meals a day at least five days a week and we do yoga together each evening. It’s not overwhelming and it works. I walk Cody, our black lab twice a day, thirty minutes each walk. I love doing it and it burns a few calories. In short, be as active as you can and enjoy your life.

    I still like a bowl of sliced smoked gouda and ritz crackers…while I read. It’s heaven! But it’s calories, so I don’t do it often but when I want them, then fine and I don’t feel guilty. It’s a treat. And there’s a huge difference between a “treat” and a “habit.” A difference that can be measured in pounds.

    It’s not about holding back FOOD, per se. It’s all about holding back on the wrong foods. Eat a cookie, eat two cookies, but don’t eat twelve cookies. And make sure you have a nice bowl of fruit handy when you have that white flower, white sugar urge–a delicious orange will wonders.

    In parting, from your last picture with your son, you look like a teenager! So, hey you’re doing something right. 🙂 Good for you!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Hi Paul!

      You are too kind, but I’ll take it though.😉

      Life is too short to hold back all of the time, I agree. Smoked Gouda and Cheese? That sounds delicious! How fun that you and your wife do yoga together! What a nice way to spend time together. I hear all of the time how vital it is to keep your flexibility.

      It’s so nice to hear from you I hope you are doing well.

      Liked by 1 person

  4. As someone who’s never really had to watch her weight (apart from right after nearly breaking my body by bringing minature humans into this world) – and that’s due to a fast metabolism, so it’s simple biology, not bragging or an obsessive diet-exercise lifestyle – I think the number one problem is pretty clear. People are too damn blissfully ignorant to care about the double standards, about their hypocrisy, and to get off their verbal soapboxes and start preaching by example. If you think exercise is important, then exercise – jog or go to the gym or walk the dog, take yoga or a dance class or do jumping jacks in your kitchen. Don’t keep ordering fried food and giant sodas and sitting on your butt watching “reality” TV. And don’t keep relying on pills to make everything better – including weight loss. And we all need to re-read those articles that came out in the 80s and 90s informing us that eating disorders are among the most deadly illnesses. So we all have an extra 5 pounds around our midsection after years of stealing that cookie and bearing children – so what? That doesn’t make any of us less lovable, less valuable.

    Can you tell I have a well-formed opinion about this subject? 😉

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Hi Rachel…I get it….we can become preoccupied with losing ten pounds, waiting for our bangs to grow out, getting our roots colored, keeping up with current fashion….on and on and on….I think that being hard on ourselves largely reflects societal pressures and criticisms that serve to distract us from focusing on growth and connection….how many industries benefit from the competition and insecurity that has us trying to measure up? For the record, I appreciate what you share so much….your heart is just the right size and I hope it never changes 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

Comments

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s