Holidays and Healthy Body…Image?

A friend of mine whom I met while interviewing for the doctoral program in psychology at KU last year recently asked me to write a post for her fabulous blog on body image. My post is below.

The other day I heard that the average American gains eight pounds over November-December.  So, what better time to talk about female body image, right?

I know what you’re thinking- Holidays. Body image. Ug.
I’ve oft thought that it would be nice to be a man around the holidays.  Instead of baking all day and dolling yourself up for a Christmas party, men just show up in their sweater and jeans and eat a lot of really great food. Instead of cooking all morning and doing dishes all afternoon on Thanksgiving, men just lay on the couch and watch football. Instead of considering how eac

h bite of holiday goodies will still be showing on your ever-growing mid-section for six months, men just enjoy them.

But these female holiday traditions are neither necessary nor innate. They are optional.

Last Wednesday my back ached from baking cookies and sitting on the floor wrapping packages and affixing homemade bows.

I could choose to do less or ask for help.

On Christmas day, how many of our heads are tense and tempers short as we bend over backwards to do it all?

We could choose to do less or ask for help.

And of course, there’s that holiday eating guilt. Oh why did I eat so much? I can feel way more wiggle in my thighs today than yesterday. Is that a double chin I see in the mirror? I should star

ve myself for two weeks to punish myself for this.

We could choose to enjoy food. To enjoy our bodies.

How great to be able to sit and stand and walk and talk and ski and dance and eat and sing and wrap and unwrap and hug and kiss and cuddle and run and pray and ride and play and reflect and receive and give and just be.



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