Monday, February 18, 2008

perfection

I have just turned the television off. There was a documentary, called "Under the Knife", with Louis Theroux. Basically he spent a few weeks in Beverly Hills visiting a few plastic surgeons and following a few of their patients. For me, the worst part was the 50 year old male who looked like a sunburnt mannequin with moobs, or perhaps the woman who wanted her breasts to look just that little bit more symmetrical where they already looked like bulbous plastic balloons - actually the worst was a cute girl with a nice body who went under the knife quite radically and was so happy when her ex agreed that yes, she did look more beautiful and he'd quite like to get back with her. Each and every patient this reporter spoke with talked about the inner change their outer change brought, and how much happier and more confident they were.

Over the last year I'm sure I've put on weight. Not heaps, luckily. But since I broke my heel, I have been restricted from all normal exercise, and have been feeling just a bit worse than usual about it. I've been trying to cut out less healthy food while I can't do much exercise - but here's some advice: if you must have that sort of injury which restricts you from exercise, try not to do it just before Christmas. So basically Allie has been a little bit depressed about body image recently.

It feels strange then, that after seeing these "perfect" specimens of humanity onscreen, I suddenly feel like this weight has been lifted off my shoulders. These people, with all their imperfections observed, identified, marked on with a Sharpie, and treated - these people look abnormal, even bizarre, or at best unnatural. They have lost their natural contour, their identifying features. They are still unhappy with themselves; although they say they're not, they still think they just need a bit of a touch-up in future. Right now (I'm sure it won't last but I want to document this) I feel almost delirious with joy that I am a very, very normal person, that I have a lot of external imperfections, and that I am aware of the person inside me who is independent of what people see. And that I don't live in Beverly Hills.

8 comments:

heidikins said...

Amen! And ditto on not wanting to live in Beverly Hills. (Although, per capita there are more plastic surgeons in Salt Lake City than in Hollywood... sigh...)

xox

~Virginia~ said...

Totally agree. I don't understand how people's families or friends don't tell them something...it's insane. I head the term "moobs" the other day for the 1st time...

sarakastic said...

I was just thinking about something similar yesterday. I weigh myself everyday & I was wondering what would happen if I didn't do that for a whole month, would I be happier?

JenKneeBee said...

Any guy who will start dating you again because you went under the knife and have a newly plasticized body is trash. Trash, trash, trash, trash.

Trish Ryan said...

What a great post (especially this time of year, when the cold, grey New England weather makes me seek out carbs and candy just to have something comforting to focus on). There's a weirdness around that whole culture; it's like people don't have anything meaningful going on in their lives, so they hone in on something like this to ease the angst. A human temptation, I guess.

Stacy said...

Love this post. I, too, am not feeling good about my body right now. (Unlike you, I have gained heaps of weight.) I, too, am grateful that I'd never have self esteem poor enough to go under the knife for some jerk.

LEstes65 said...

Perspective is a beautiful thing. I find it amusing that - even while I'm still overweight - I feel so thin and cute right now. Because I'm fitting into clothes that are 2-3 sizes smaller than a year ago. And that I'm fitting into those smaller sizes even better lately. I feel much thinner and cuter INSIDE than I really am outside. Which is quite a switch for me.

Bless you in your self image, my dear. I think you're gorgeous.

E. said...

Thanks a million--this is exactly what I needed to hear today. Perspective!