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I Don't Care About Being Skinny

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Guest blogger Dani Klein Modisett: I know I should, all the magazines tell me I should, and the moms who seem to have a "yoga pants only" wardrobe tell me I should, but since I've had my second child, I find myself surprisingly okay with looking...like a woman who's had two children.

plump and proud tshirt
I catch my image reflected in the window of the Target Superstore as I walk in for school supplies.

"So that's what I look like now," I think, seeing a woman with full arms and huge breasts. The stripper boobs are understandable, given the fact that I am still nursing my baby, but the rest of my "plumpness" is a little surprising. I don't weigh myself and haven't since my 20s when I danced closely with an eating disorder. All I really have to go on about the size of my body is how my clothes fit and various windows and mirrors. There are definitely some skirts (mini) and some jackets (also short) which I will never close again. I might even be bold and throw them out.

Interestingly, if I looked like this a few years ago, I'm not sure I would have left the house. Yes, I tend to be a little obsessive and a lot vain. I also live in Southern California, which doesn't help. But if you live anywhere in this country and go to the checkout in a supermarket or turn on the television, shame for not being a skinny woman is yours for the taking.

I am proud to say that I have not done "The Master Cleanse," the Grapefruit Diet, Dr. Atkins, the Zone, Weight Watchers, Jenny Craig, the Hot Dog and Hard-Boiled Egg diet, or any of the other suggestions I have been given since having my second child. I work out hard enough to keep my endorphins high and skirted post-partum depression. I feel healthy and strong and good enough about myself to flirt, which is a lot better than being a hungry, bitchy size 2. Been there, done that.

Dani Klein Modisett Dani Klein Modisett is the mother of 1-year-old Gideon (pictured) and 5-year-old Gabriel. She is comedy writer/creator/producer of the show "Afterbirth...stories you won't read in Parents magazine." An anthology of stories from this show will be published by St. Martin's Press, in stores in May 2009.


next: Don't Let Your Son Be Levi Johnston
11 comments so far | Post a comment now
ashley September 13, 2008, 9:17 AM

I totally feel the same way. I am 5’8” and weigh about 130 to 134. I had my second child 15 months ago and it has taken me this long to finally accept the fact that unless I really try hard I will never weigh the 115 pounds I unhealthily weighed in high school. I really feel good about myself and think I am sexy and on skinnier days I will even put on a little t-shirt that shows a little tummy. My but is bigger now too which totally makes me feel sexy. I am starting to love my mother of 2 kids body. And so is my husband.

happy who I am September 13, 2008, 10:23 AM

It has been scientifically proven certain types of good Fats and Carbohydrates are brain food; every ones body needs these for proper reasoning cognitive abilities. Woman’s bodies are no exception to this and it has been proven when you deny the body of these essential nutrients you will lack proper reasoning cognitive abilities. This is why the people that who are skinny but not genetically predisposition to be skinny (which is extremely rare) some times seem like an “air head”. They are not really dumb people they just some times appear that way do to their lack of these essential nutrients which dose effect their cognitive abilities. Perhaps there was a miscommunication here, the title of this blog is “I Don’t Care about Being Skinny” not “I don’t care that I am Skinny” You stated you are 5’8” and weigh about 130 to 134. Even if your build was petite you are still under weight for your height and weight. The taller you are the more you are supposed to weigh. I am 5” 5 ½” and the normal weight range for my medium build is between 130 to 145. Don’t fall for advertising tricks that make you feel bad about yourself just so you will buy the products they sell.

cara September 13, 2008, 10:32 AM

You know, I feel that I am rather active, I find solace in my daily jaunts, BUT was told by my last lover that “I am gross” and that “I’d be perfect (to him) if I had a tummy tuck”. (He was insecure about his height, so I told him there’s a surgery to lengthen his legs!!!) Anyway, that comment hurt my feelings, bad. So, I ate less, but I found I couldn’t run as hard, and I love to run, so decidedto EAT. I’ve since dumped the winner, and now think I am beautiful and fit for a mother of three, and screw anyone who desn’t see that. (but it took me TIME to come to this) You know, my stomach will always be the stomach of a mom (I had huge babies) and my boobs will always be deflated, but it could be a lot worse.

Marci September 13, 2008, 1:20 PM

Ashley, you actually sound pretty thin to me. Not skinny or unhealthy but just small.

Sheila September 13, 2008, 6:13 PM

I have a 13 month old and I still weigh 30 lbs more than I did before I got pg. I gained 46. (I’m 5’7”) I eat well but I’m stuck at over 200 lbs and as a working mom it’s hard to find the time to lose the weight! Whenever I do have time I’m too tired to do anything! UGH! I know I’ll lose it eventually though.. it will just take time. I’m stuck in a cycle of stress and exhaustion! I did South Beach for a little while and it worked but it’s hard to stick to (esp in phase 1).. and it’s expensive! I keep looking at diet pills but then I remember how dangerous they are… I wish I could afford surgery to get rid of this extra hanging skin on my belly! I can’t stand my body right now. Every time I look at my wedding pics I want to cry because I feel like I’ll never get my body back! I feel like I’m in denial about how I look.. I’m supposed to “feel sexy” about being a mom and I really want to but I can’t! It’s hard feeling sexy at size 17! I feel fat and frumpy. I have to do something :( losing weight is friggin hard!

shanna September 13, 2008, 6:54 PM

being thin isn’t sexy, but being confident is….I have 4 kids and believe me, I get what its like to let your body go. But i’m not about to try any of the crazy fasts and diets hollywood tries to push on us. Dani’s column is refreshing!

cara September 14, 2008, 11:38 AM

Skinny isn’t sexy, but being fit is. And being fit means you are toned and that can be any range of sizes.

@SHEILA…..make the time to go for walks. There is not a diet that you can buy, or a pill that you can take that is going to do it for you (aside from crack) Walking is the best exercise one can do. Get some tunes, pop them in your ears and just walk. Also, I’d cut out condiments. Mayo, if it’s in your fridge, throw it out, use fat free yogart, or mustard. Replace soda’s with sparkling H20 w/ lime. Little things like that, they all add up in the days calories. You can do it…just take the time to walk. Shoot for an hour in the morning and an hour at night. LOVE you.

Sheila September 14, 2008, 12:57 PM

Thanks cara :) I do walk about 15 - 30 mins a day on my breaks at work. Lately it’s been so overwhelmingly HOT! (in Florida.) I have to find a better time to walk because afternoon is not working. But I don’t wanna go walking around by myself at night! And I have to be at work by 6am so early morning is out. My schedule just sucks lol Maybe I can try bringing baby to the gym? I just have a hard time trusting them to watch her..

cara September 14, 2008, 3:29 PM

@ Sheila….just keep it up, I’d forgo the gym and take that time to walk w/baby. (I’m a purist, I don’t like sweating inside, nor other’s sweat and think that the oxygen outside is better for you and your circulation) - and I’m with you on the daycare issue, and night in Fla. Just keep elongating your time for walks outside and watch your fuel. You’ll get there and you’ll be firm in no time.

Sara September 15, 2008, 11:14 AM

I’m really tired of seeing the whole weight issue. Most women are predisposed to being ‘a certain way’ and instead of trying to elect that certain body type as ‘optimal’, I wish we could truly see ALL shapes as beautiful and feminine. Seems we are still infatuated with the idea that certain types equate ‘must-be-reasons- why-so’. I have always been a ‘skinny’ woman - have never dieted or ‘tried’ to remain thin and yet constantly got told…”hey you ‘need’ to gain weight…you need to eat something (my ‘favorite)”. Funny, how many of those comments made by people who didn’t know me would be briskly answered back by my friends who did. In short, I might have been 5’3” @110 pounds (soaking wet with clogs on) but I tell you what there was no one who could lasted at a meal as long as me. (hint: my better friends knew if dinner was on them, they’d best be off taking me to a buffet). I was raised in a house where you clean your heaping plate - where you eat when you’re hungry…that’s what I consider healthy, that’s how I was brought up…you don’t WASTE food. Maybe I don’t ‘look’ like a mother of four - maybe I happen to be smaller around the waistline than most women around me - but that doesn’t mean I don’t appreciate the differences around me. I’m just really tired of the opinion that if my waistline isn’t a certain amount of inches - that it’s ‘unwomanly’. Some women have a healthy appetite and it might not show - but that’s no reason to suspect that I’m not filling up to impress a ‘certain size”. In certain cases, it IS genes - so please remember that before you offer advice on healthy eating.

Sara September 15, 2008, 11:28 AM

Just wanted to add that not all size 2’s are ‘bitchy and hungry’. Whata rude thing to say. And if the author is ‘feeling shame’ for not being skinny maybe she should check her self-esteem - not attack so-called ‘skinny’ women.

You think YOU have it hard - try living in the midwest and finding clothes if you’re a small size - you’re definitely going to have to shop at pricier stores in order to find ANYTHING that fits. They don’t have decent-priced clothes out here for women of my size - and I’m not trying to look like a high-school teenager.


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