I read three things on the Internet recently that keep going around in my head.
1. The Sheryl Sandberg I go home at 5:30pm blog post and video
2. Ashley Judd’s response to the media’s questioning her “puffy face.” I put puffy face in quotes because if you’ve see what the press is referring to, you’d rub your eyes, look at yourself in the mirror and think IF THAT’S PUFFY, I’M A BALLOON, I’M A YOGA BALL! WHERE DID THIS PUFF COME FROM?! I have a very round face, so that’s what I thought. You might have a narrow face and not think this at all.
3. The Shrinking Woman by Mona Awad
I think they’re all very startling pieces. I find them startling mainly because they need to be said at all. And I need them to be said. In all three of these stories, I had that queasy feeling of seeing a not-flattering side of myself. I am that guilty working mom sneaking out of the office to make dinner (and also that guilty working mom who’d rather work than be a stay-at-home mom — hello bad mom!). I’m also a person who’s thought, oh that celebrity as gotten fat, and also looked at myself and said, why are you so fat? And also looked at people around me and thought, you shallow people judging fat people. And that Mona Awad story. So chilling. Imagine your mother wiring her jaw shut to lose weight. Imagine being there when she was sick and tried to vomit but her jaw was wired shut. This is what we do to our bodies.
All three of these stories feel crazy to me. And uncomfortably familiar. And so important to be said out loud.