I am turning into the Mom with the Heavy Bottom. It’s been a noble fight, holding it off as long as I have; but I’ve been putting on some pounds lately, and it’s all going straight to my thighs. Inner and outer. I seriously look like I’m wearing chaps. The seams of my jeans are wearing thin where my thighs rub together. When I’m wearing a skirt, they get stuck together even though the rest of my body is moving. It’s a strange sensation, and even stranger to duck into a corner to squat so they’ll unglue.
The thing is, I look pretty good everywhere else. Face, arms, belly… even my ass is fairly normal. But my thighs look as if they were injected with saline, like they do to plump up chickens.
I mistakenly told my husband the truth about my weight the other day. He was trying to figure out how much I weighed so he’d know what size scuba suit to buy me, and he told the salesgirl “I think she weighs about 145”, and that’s exactly when I knew I would love him FOREVER. Because he was WAAAAAY off. Like, I weigh that much, plus a toddler.
Sadly, I have no motivation to lose the weight right now, either. I feel fine. Okay, I don’t like the whole my-life-is-a-pair-of-corduroy-pants business, but hey, I’m pretty busy with the kids, and they sure don’t care about my thighs, and we’ve already established that Dan is completely oblivious (did I mention I’ll love him forever?). I can still squeeze into my jeans, until the inner seams rub off, anyway.
I’ve had weight issues since the day I turned 30. My doctor had informed me that “your metabolism just changes once you hit 30” and on that day my metabolism immediately took that as permission. I became a lifetime member of Weight Watchers that year, and have since done Jenny Craig, Atkins, Slim-Fast, various other deprivation diets, and at least three additional trips back to Weight Watchers.
The Weight Watchers program is big on tricks and affirmations to keep you on track. As a mom who (like most moms) tends to “clean up” the kids’ dinner plates (with my mouth), one of my favorites is “I am not a garbage can. [Point at real garbage can] THAT is a garbage can.”
There’s the 20-minute rule: you can have the one slice of pizza, but if you want another, get up and set the kitchen timer for 20 minutes. If you still want it after the timer goes off, go ahead. (Repeat as necessary.) It actually works: most of the time, you realize you’re full.
Then there’s the exercise where you look at the offending food (usually a dessert or sweet of some kind) and say: “I am stronger than this food. This food is not stronger than me.”
But there is always an exception to every rule, and mine is a tiny, brightly colored cone of corn syrupy deliciousness:
Candy corn is Herculean in its power over me. I am but an innocent fawn in the presence of its leonine strength. In my imagination, it lines up and marches into my open mouth while I am tied to the chair, Gulliver-like in my helplessness. When I swear I will never buy it again, there it is at the grocery in a big happy orange cardboard Halloween display, glowing like the pot of gold at the end of the rainbow, and I toss it in my cart while averting my eyes: “No one saw that, it didn’t really happen, it’s not really there.” And then I get in the car and rip open the bag and ritually eat each piece in three bites: white, yellow, orange… white, yellow, orange… over and over all the way home. Then I hide it from the kids like a heroin habit. I’ll snack on it until I’m so sick that I’m chasing it with Maalox, and yet I will not stop.
Maybe the cone-shape of the candy is why it’s all going to my thighs, turning me into a cone-shaped woman. And maybe this painful confession is the first step on my road to recovery. Hi, my name is Leanne, and I am a candy-corn-aholic.
That's it! I can do it! The healing starts today. I’ll have a couple of weeks to eat right, exercise and go through withdrawal before Thanksgiving, which should be a breeze compared to Halloween. Unless my kids have candy corn in their trick-or-treat bags. Then we might have a problem.