Tuesday, July 9, 2013

Fatty Boom-a-Latty

Well, there's nothing that says, "Time to diet, fat ass!" like your two-year old pointing to your stomach while you are in the tub and saying, "Daddy has a big one of those.  But yours is big too!"

There was a moment of confusion there at the beginning.  When she pointed and said "Daddy has a big one of those" I started freaking, thinking 'What in the hell is she looking at down in that area that looks like something her father has????'

I kinda panicked.  "What are you talking about, Al?"

She pointing again toward my lower mid-section.  "Dat!"

"My stomach?"  For once I was hoping someone was talking about my big gut.

"Yep!" she answered, as she giggled.  "Daddy's is bigger but you has a big one too!"

I realized at that moment that she was the only person in this entire world that could say this to me where I wouldn't want to haul off and beat them firmly about the cranial region with a shampoo bottle.

Instead, I was disappointed in myself.  And a bit grateful for her honesty.
Honest Allie from Toddler Tubby Time
There's something about honesty from children that is excusable.  No matter who you are, if a child says something to you that's blatantly true, you can't get angry with them.  You just kind of have to suck it up and say, "You might have something there, kid."  And chances are, their observation is right on the money.

It's when we get older that there is a problem with honesty.  Sometimes, you REALLY need to use that inner filter that you (hopefully) developed when you (hopefully) learned about social sense.  I'm always shocked by people who don't use the filter, but that is usually accompanied by zero social sense..... and the fact is that they don't have a filter.  These tend to be the same people who blame everyone else for why they don't have friends.  They just don't know any better.

Soon the teenage years will kick in, and while the filter is still under construction, Allie will say oodles of Stupid Honest stuff.  You know, the things that kids are going to learn real fast that aren't at all appropriate and may cost you an ass whoopin later if you don't figure out how to stifle it.  I'm sure a lot of it will be directed at me.  She's just warming up right now.

As I watched Allie playing in the tub with her toys, I started to think about my mom and how amazing it is that I'm still alive with some of the Stupid Honest things that I've said to her.  There was one particular moment that I may have inadvertently tested her ability to not murder a human being.

Right now, she's reading this and knowing exactly where I'm going with this and what moment I'm referring to.  

I was a teenager and she was giving me hell for something that I had done.  I probably hadn't cleaned my room despite her seven million requests to do so, hadn't done my homework again, or I had gone somewhere with someone that I was forbidden to be with.  Whatever it was, I'm sure that she was freaking out with good reason.

However, Stupid Honest kicked in and what happened next was driven entirely by a teenage hormonal inability to sense right from wrong.  I looked at her as she took a moment to catch her breath mid-freak-out, and said something to the effect of: 

"You have no idea how ridiculous you look right now."  

And, as I'm sure you've guessed, I wasn't saying this in a proactive, concerned fashion.  It was full of arrogance and obnoxiousness.

Let me pause here a moment to say that my mother is one of the most loving, sensitive, non-violent, caring people I know.  Everything good about me came from her.

She is ALSO a warrior.  She was selling a home, going through an ugly divorce, teaching fifth grade full time, going to college at night to get her Masters Degree, had a son on a ship in the Persian Gulf during a war, and had a daughter graduating high school all at the same time. SIMULTANEOUSLY, people.  No consecutive crap.  All at once.  This was not a woman to get sassy with.

I can't say exactly how things went down after that because I remember being reeeeeeeally scared because I knew I screwed up.  Inside, my synapses were firing like mad and my brain cells were yelling, "Retreat!  Retreat!"  From her words alone, the fear of God was instilled and social sense was developed so that I may never make such a horrific, verbal error again.  I was no longer Stupid Honest.

(Dear Mom, thank you for letting me live past that day.  Love you, Vic)

Right now, Allie is full of innocent honesty and I feel like I should take it to heart.  She says I have a big belly with no malicious intent.  She couldn't care less about my weight.  It's just an observation.

But I don't want to be a mother who can't keep up with her kid.  I don't want Allie to be embarassed because her mom is overweight.  I don't want to set a bad example of what is or is not acceptable health.  

Fortunately, she has two grandmothers who are naturally thin and she appears to have inherited those genes so hopefully she wont spend 25+ years of her life obsessing over her weight like I did.  Hopefully we can keep each other active and fit.  God knows she is well on her way to that, since every day she runs around our yard, all willy-nilly, yelling, "Mommy, run with me!  Chase me!"  And true to my chubbiness, I groan and go, "How about if I just watch?"

At forty I promised myself that I would no longer let the battle of the bulge rule my life.  At forty-one, I feel like I've got a good start with that as I'm not nearly as obsessed as I used to be. And, to be perfectly honest, I have no excuses because there's really no more "diet knowledge" to be found that I haven't already acquired.  So, I'm turning a new corner with a new plan.... and it may or may not work out.  

I'm not putting any specific name to it like Weight Watchers or Jenny Craig or Nutrisystem.  I'm calling it Operation Fattypants.  It starts Thursday.  No pressure.  No expectations.  Just trying to be a good example for Allie.  I want to be Queen Skinnypants, but I'll settle for Mom Who Keeps Up.

Game on, flab..... cuz I don't ever want to hear that I've got something bigger than my husband ever again unless she's talking about my boobs!


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