It took me aback, that’s for sure.
We were playing a game of family hide-and-seek. Baby A and I were hiding, while Daddy and Baby B were charged with finding us. I was holding A, and we squeezed behind a door. Apparently the spot was a little tight for the both of us, and we were sticking out, as B spotted us almost immediately.
There were the usual squeals and laughter, and then A said, “Mommy, you’re too fat!”
It’s true that I didn’t account for our combined bulk against what is usually a good hiding spot...but WHERE did that come from???
I know she didn’t mean anything by it. I feel 100% confident she was just describing the fact that we were too big for that tiny spot.
But it rolled off her tongue with such ease…I was stunned.
I calmly told her, “Sweetie, you’re right. Together we were too big for this spot. We’ll have to find a better hiding place next time.
But ‘fat’ is not a word we use to describe people. Fat is the white part that we cut off meat. And fats are found in some foods. Some fats are good for our bodies, and some we don’t eat very often. You know how we talk about eating a balanced diet.”
I tried not to make a big deal out of it. Certainly I don’t want her to think “fat” is a bad word…but oh, my heavens…it’s not a word we use with people. Ack!!!
I know I overthink these things, but I feel so much pressure to model a positive body image for the girls. I think it’s one of the biggest responsibilities I have as a parent…and it touches so many areas, too.
Not only is it about loving your body, it’s about caring for your body and respecting it as such an incredible machine.
It’s about making good choices.
It’s about being respectful of other people.
It’s about recognizing that we’re all created differently, each with our own strengths and weaknesses.
And I know the list continues.
Whew! Who knew hide-and-seek could be so heady???