Tonight I am blogging as the latest weapon in my defense against the powerful urge to cut my own hair. I KNOW it's a bad idea, I KNOW. But I WANT to.
My appearance is on my mind (or, my mind is on my appearance? Boyfriend has a thing for switching the nouns in a sentence - switching the sentences in a noun - and it's catching) today. If I don't have time to get a paper on my way to uni, I'll just read whatever I find - Metro is always good, on the way home there's sometimes even a Times - and on Tuesday I found the Daily Mail.
Horrors. In the Mail, they had a surprisingly enlightened article about women and body image (and if you're thinking they thought body image was political correctness gone mad
or immigrant invasion gone mad
, you'd be wrong, as was I). This woman did a creative writing competition where women wrote in how they felt about their bodies, and the Mail published some of the entries. Other than the earth-shattering
counter-productivity of having women compete to see who can hate their body most eloquently, it was interesting.
One entry completely ripped off an entire page of Wasted
, which fucked me off because it's a stunning book and so personal. This girl had absolutely no right.
One was by a girl with cerebral palsy, talking about the perceived asexuality of the disabled. It was fantastic, nothing self-indulgent, none of this 'we are all unique and beautiful snowflakes' bullshit, just 'Alright, this is me, I'm fantastic and sexy and clever and why the hell wouldn't you want me?'. Good lady.
It gets me thinking about things that I hate to think about.
Today I went shopping with my gran, aunty and mum. Good times. Granny and I are looking at big jumpers, and I say that I want to get a really oversize one and wear it as a dress. So I pick one up that's about 4 sizes too big and hold it up and my granny says - "Yes, that should fit, you're like me, bigger than you look."
Out of the mouths of grans...
God, I hate putting on weight and I hate even more that I hate it. I want so much to be right-on and feminist and 'lalala' I love my curves because - honestly - most of the time I do. It's just that I've crossed that line between Tyra Banks bootilicious and looking slightly pregnant. I'm not being mawkish, it's true. But girls are so impossible to talk to sometimes.
Eg., hearing two of my skinnier than me friends talk about how fat they are, I try to interject - don't be stupid, I'm bigger than both of you and I love the way I look - but I don't get as far as 'I'm bigger' before it's oh no, oh no, you're way skinny, we're fat
How patently fucking ridiculous is that? These girls weigh less than me, take a smaller dress size, eat better than me, drink and smoke less, work out more - of course I'm bigger than them, to me it doesn't seem like a big deal. Until
they start trying to tell me otherwise, because then I think - you protest too much.
I hate the whole thing so much. And now that I do feel fat, I want to hear 'oh no you're not' even less.
Why is this such a mountain we feel like we have to climb? If I get a bad essay mark, I'll find out why and work harder on the next one. If I don't like my hair, I'll cut it or dye it. If my house is messy I'll tidy it but GOD FORBID that I should be so flippant about this. God forbid that I should casually remark that I'm packing more junk in the trunk these days - this is the one problem girls actually can't talk about.
Girl 1 - I've gained weight.
Girl 2 - OK. Do you care?
Girl 1 - Yes.
Girl 2 - Then go to the fucking gym.
Simples. I so wish it wasn't a big deal, for me, for any of us.