Until my young thirties, I was painfully thin and could not gain a pound. When I was presented with a video of my wedding shower, I was so ashamed of my overly thin arms, that I threw the video away. Now, as I approach fifty I deeply regret that action of throwing the video away and the feelings that fueled it. My arms have been shamefully fat for a couple decades. I would love to look at the video and say, “see, I really was thin…” because I have been ashamed of my fat arms. Never approving of self, fat or thin, is a common thing with women.
Last month I was in the ministry with my friend a young mother and her baby. I was wearing a sleeveless top and sitting next to her son a three year old. He put his hand on my arm and said “Cold”. Suddenly, he became a koala bear and totally wrapped around my arm. It was a very delightful and amusing experience. My friend said, “He loves touching woman’s arms”. This is the first time I felt good about my good fat arms.
Back to the video, and haunting memories of better days gone by. It is so easy to feel that those days were better. Yet, when we consider the whole picture, we might discover we did not truly feel better about ourselves then. If we are haunting ourselves, tormenting ourselves with the better selves gone by. It is time to renegotiate our view, for example: I look forward to being thin again, but I do not want to be as thin as I was in my teens. These arms have performed many tasks over the years as I worked, and raised three sons. It is great that my arms will reflect strength and suppleness which reflects my character. Life’s challenges causes us to earn such as we strive to be responsible with all our obligations.
Do not throw the video away, or reject the memories. Yet, we never want to unrealistically worship what can never healthfully be attained. It can be defeating. Keep it inspiring. I believe I am going to do a few 2 lb bicep curls.