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EIGHTY-NINE AND PREGNANT

EIGHTY-NINE AND PREGNANT

As I glanced in the full-length mirror this thought crossed my mine and was hard to process. When did I turn into my mother? Where did I go? When did I leave? I could see the slight resemblance in the figure, but the face belonged to my Dad’s side of the family.

Now my mother was never a big woman. She was considered very thin back in the day. But five kids, five years on an Alaska homestead, two jobs and helping my dad keep a fledgling business going worked against the rail thinness she was accustomed to as a young woman. Life takes a toil on our bodies and gravity takes over the older we get. My dad was tall and thin also meaning the thin genes ran rampant in the family.

Growing up in a one-horse town (no better way to explain it) we bought our clothing at local stores with modest inventory. I remember while in high school wearing size 5 junior and if there had been a 3 junior or even a 1 junior available to me at that time it would probably have fit better, not gaping here and there with enough room to grow, though I did not – grow that is.  Wanting my clothes to fit properly is probably the main factor in why I learned to sew at such a young age.

I never watched what I ate, never counted calories and hardly every exercised. I didn’t have to. With that double dose of thin gene in the family I was home free! At nineteen-years-old I only weighed 89 pounds when I got pregnant with my twins who are now forty-years-old. But, living in a much bigger city – Charleston, SC – I at least had lots more options and sizing in the clothing department at that time.

Years later I finally settled at a size 4 or 6 depending on the manufacture. Expensive labels run smaller for some reason. Maybe because if you can afford them you can pay to be the size you wish to be? Hmmmm?

Now that size 4 is mostly a size 6 and for a brief period was an 8. Age is a factor I’m sure. I run. I walk. I TRY to eat healthy. H brings home cookies and cherry pies and ice cream sandwiches from the grocery store. I shove them to the back of the cabinet or freezer and he pulls them out every night and sits next to me on the couch politely offering me some of his goodies. (Goodies he should not be eating either! Do I dare tell him?)

When I tell people I can’t eat all I want to eat anymore. I have to exercise and watch the calories, they say, “But you are so thin. Of course you can eat another piece of cake!” I tell them clothes hide a lot! That’s true and you know it!

Sometimes I just want to eat junk all day. You know – cookies, chips, a little cherry pie. I want a soda, not unsweet tea and I need my hot chocolate in the mornings! Give me some buttered popcorn and some of those movie theater candy packs.

And some days I don’t want to exercise. I’d rather sit here piddling on WordPress or writing on my book or reading. Those are the things that have to wait when I have to run.

When I gain weight I don’t gain it in all the right places. It goes to my thighs or my butt or my hips or my gut. Gained weight never divides itself by 3 or 4 or even 5 to settle evenly throughout your body in the places most desired. There should be a clever way to steer it in the right direction and when I figure that one out I’ll be a rich woman!

Also, when I lose weight, it’s usually in my face first making those prominent cheekbones more prominent. When Andrew was small he told me to suck them in – as if! Actually when you try to suck in cheekbones they stand out even further. You tried that didn’t you? 😉

Weight. It’s an issue to women everywhere. We are either too thin or too fat. There is never any in-between. I blame it on age because when I was younger weight was never an issue.

Now believe it or not, I really would not mind being a size 10 – IF I could be a voluptuous, curvy, sexy size 10! Until then I’ll just have to watch what I eat and exercise more!

If only this were the end result!

If only this were the end result!

~Elle

 

 

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About Elle Knowles

Elle Knowles lives in the Florida Panhandle with her husband and off-at-college-most-of-the-time son. She has four daughters, one son, and eleven beautiful grandchildren. 'Crossing the Line' is her first novel. The sequel 'What Line' is a work in progress.

21 responses »

  1. It’s even worse when you act like your mother

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  2. It wasn’t until I turned 50 that I began to see my mother looking back at me when I look in the mirror. One day when we were in the doctor’s office a new nurse asked, “are you sisters?” I turned to my mom and asked, “should we be flattered or insulted?” We laughed it off…..

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  3. I really loved this. You were so open. And I’m always mystified you had twins. I’ll just bet you look great. Wonderful read. 🙂

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  4. Really great post! I think I weighed 89 pounds at birth, though! lily

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  5. I reflected on the same point about how when young weight was never a problem. What has changed? Too much emphasis in magazines, TV, food we eat, gyms. Not enough on play time and doing exercises you like to do.

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  6. Yup, it ain’t fun. Yet if people do not watch their weight, or not exercise. Then we’ll see them at the clinic learning to deal with diabetes. Even without those factors of impending obesity. The incidence of diabetes is much higher than fifty years ago. Fifty years ago, the population I grew up around were overweight, smoked and about the only exercise was a walk to the pub. Yet type 2 diabetes, was practically unheard of.

    So what has really changed? Could it be the drugs pumped into livestock? The drugs to pack on weight as the animals wait in feedlots? Or maybe the drugs to inhibit disease, to maximize profit? While the animals wait in those same feedlots,

    Or perhaps it’s the plethora of chemicals in the foodstuffs? Found in markets now everywhere, all competing for your well-earned dollar. It’s called retail-entertainment. Where all the cities and towns now have shopping malls. Where many go to relax after work. Malls or strip malls. Where the fast food outlets jostle each other for retail space. With the garish signs of giant hamburgers, fries or even sushi. The equally garish signs that shout out, how cheap the food is. All this means is; what we shovel into our bodies on a daily basis, increases the chemical input. Resulting in weakened internal organs.

    Whatever the cause. The result is; bodies we are shocked by and frequently rush to the surgeon, to take care of. The medical profession is also competing to pay off those debts, incurred at college while becoming qualified.

    So referrals to knee or hip surgeons, have tripled in the last twenty years. The doctors hand out drugs like candy. How many of those drugs …? You know the ones on TV that tell us the side effects can drive you crazy. Are now sidelined, because the research was fudged? Far too many. Yet we can all see the results, in the mirror.

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  7. It’s funny what you would call “curvy” is my skinny. I’m tall (or used to be, anyway) and I was a 10 for a minute right about the time I got married at age 23. The rest of my life, the smallest I’ve been is a 12. The largest, a XXL? When I lost when this last time (35 pounds in my 50s) my goal was simply not to have to shop in the “big girl” store. Fourteen years later I still need to buy L or XL tops because (luckily?) my boobs haven’t shrunk. Weird.

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  8. I’ve stopped worrying so much about my added weight. Big can be beautiful, too. In another era, I would have been seen as “Rubenesque” and highly prized.

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  9. I’m afraid I may be a size 10…… But I don’t look quite like that… However, I do look more and more like Mother… Even her face!
    D

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