We're going on vacation in just 3 days, down to Saint Simon's Island.We've never been there, and are pretty excited as you can imagine. Part of getting ready for an island vacation is making sure you have all the requisite island things - sunscreen, flip flops, swimsuits.
The girl needed a new swimsuit, so we popped over to Target to see what the little girl's section might have in store.
I got a hard lesson in body image and self confidence in the dressing room with my 4 year old. I would be shaking, in tears, and reluctant to try any of them on, much less really look in the mirror. The girl? The girl felt differently.
We'd chosen four suits, two full tank suits and two bikini type suits. As she tried them on, she danced and preened in front of the mirror. She poofed out her belly until it was round in the bikini, struck a crazy pose and cackled "LOOK AT MAH BIG BELLEH!". She stuck poses in each, declared her self SO SO SO CUTE and I was amazed that I was watching a human female try on a swimsuit. This was an aberration of every experience I could recall.
The last few times I've tried on a bathing suit, it's been to make sure I had all my bits covered and that I didn't have spiders. I avert actually looking at myself for any reason. There isn't anything I want to see in that mirror. In fact, there is lots that I don't want to see.
The four year old, however, has none of those issues. She laughs when the top is too short, shakes her bootie and does a little dance gleefully suit to suit. They're all fine, they're all perfect. It turns out that the Hello Kitty suit is more perfect than the others (WHICH IS HOW IT SHOULD BE).
Where does that stop? That glee and joy over just having something new and cute, vs whether I am new and cute IN it? The thing doesn't stop being cute because it's on me, but how did my mind make that change? When did it happen?
I have a totally cute suit that does fit me and it doesn't even have a swim skirt because I will never, ever be so fat I require a swim skirt (or I will never, ever don a swimsuit again by all the Gods I swear this). It actually kind of will look cute with Julia's as it's the same color combination - pink and black.
I have to turn my mind into a four year old, and learn to be happy regardless of how I look. I need to find whatever magic wand makes that happen though.
Does anyone know where it is?