I was lying in bed trying to lift my head off my pillow and finding it quite difficult when I had a sudden vision of Julia Roberts and wondered if she too were lying in her bed with aching muscles. I felt a sudden camaraderie with her and all the beauties like me who work so hard to stay lovely. I imagined Cameron Diaz groaning in pain as she rose from bed with sore triceps. And Angelina Jolie having to get up in the middle of the night to feed one of her various adopted children wincing in pain from the 1000 situps the day before, her abs contracting as she sat up. I thought to myself, "See self. THIS is the price of beauty." (I chuckled of course at the thought of these lovelies I envy in pain. I'm sick like that.)
That's right. The price of beauty is pain my friends. Anyone who has ever had a waxing will confirm that one for you no doubt. And plastic surgery is no picnic either. Not that I know from personal experience. But, I'll say that some of the most harrowing surgeries I witnessed in my medical training were boob jobs and eye lifts and face lifts and tummy tucks. The bruising and swelling and ickyness (is that a word?)..... well, anyone who has watched those make over shows knows. But, I don't think they ever show the whole picture, the weeks of pain and swelling afterward, do they?
And so in my little pity party this morning as I lay there with aching back, abs, biceps, triceps, hamstrings, calves.......well let's just make it simple. I identified a few parts of me that weren't in pain: eyebrows, pinky toes and lips. As I laid there thinking and frankly feeling sorry for myself, I realized that even thin and beautiful people pay a price for their beauty. They work out. They eat right. They drink lots of water. Most of them do have to WORK to stay looking like that.
This is a new revelation for me as I always thought that skinny and beautiful women were just born that way. But now that I spend more time in the gym than I ever had before, I know that those hated "natural beauties" are often hanging out in the gym. And it's not just to wear those cute little yoga pants and matching brightly colored sports bras or the short shorts with cute phrases printed across their derriere while flirting with overly muscled and sweaty male specimens. No my fellow fatties, it's because they HAVE to workout. They have to run. They have to bike. They have to swim. They have to pilates and zumba and pump iron and plank and sit ups and push ups and burpee and all the other crap I too loathe at times. They must also work to stay in shape.
And so this realization cut my pity party short. I can no longer wallow in the idea that it was some cruel twist of fate that left me "chunky" or "big boned" or "a big girl". Those lovely women I admire, while genetics likely play a role, are in shape because they......well......they WORK on staying in shape. Damn it. I can no longer curse my grandparents for defective genes. NOW I have to take responsibility for my SHAPE or LACK there of as the case may be.
Finally I was able to inch my way from bed to bathroom this morning. I did so in pain, but with pride. And when I dressed this morning groaning as I tried in vain several times to secure my bra and finally after multiple attempts and much windedness (is THAT a word?) or as we call it in the medical field, dyspnea, I was victorious over the hated but necessary garment. I swelled with pride (and perhaps multiple sprains?) knowing that I am fighting the battle for beauty my friends and I am winning.
And as I stood there in Tae Kwon Do class sweating and tears of
I may never have the skinny waist of Cameron or the abs of steel of Angelina or the seemingly effortless natural and timeless beauty of Julia (those freaking bitches) BUT I WILL be as beautiful and healthy and in SHAPE as I can be. And for that I will suffer my friends. WE ALL will suffer. We will deprive ourselves and punish our bodies, but WE WILL win this war for beauty and health.
And we will love it.... pain and all.