All The Toxic Body Messaging I Internalize in One Day

Do you know what the unhealthiest thing in your diet is?

• Cookie dough? Guess again.

• Chips? Ha! Sorry, Charlie!

• Pizza?! Fuck, no! Pizza is the food of the gods.

Fine, I’ll just tell you: The WORST thing in your DIET is all the TOXIC BODY MESSAGING we are fed.

I want to walk you through a day-in-the-life of the external toxic body messaging that I, personally, am prone to internalize. Let’s pretend it’s Saturday (and I’m way busier than usual, for the sake of packing a punch, okay?).

A Day-in-the-Life of External Toxic Body Messaging

6:00 am I’m an early riser by nature, so I’m out the door and on a walk with the dogs. While they poop, I scroll through Instagram. I stop on a sponsored post promoting a so-called stomach-flattening “detox” tea that I’m pretty sure just gives you diarrhea.

6:30 am I spend half an hour lost in a #beforeandafter rabbit hole thanks to a hashtag under that stupid diarr-tea. The comments about the women’s “before” photos are filled with fat jokes and barf emojis. My body looks like many of the “before” bodies. For some reason, I can’t stop scrolling. Against my better reasoning, I can’t stop reading the comments either.

9:00 am I go to a workout class where the instructor tells us to push harder if we want to look hot in our bikinis this summer. People still say things like that?

9:05 am I realize this class has the worst playlist ever.

9:07 am I seriously can’t focus, this music is so bad.

9:15am I notice that I am, by far, the largest person in the room. I see that a lot at trendy boutique fitness classes, where, despite the cheery, all-in-this-together mentality, it’s hard to feel welcome if you don’t show up looking like a ’90s runway model.

10:00 am On my way out of the class, I stop by a rack of workout clothes in the reception area. Maybe a new outfit will make me feel more ’90s-bikinimodel-esque. (They got in my head, I can’t help it!) I’m sorry to admit that I want it all: the overpriced crop tops and the stupid-expensive workout tights and the limited-edition sweatshirts. Luckily for my credit card, nothing on this rack would fit me.

10:15 am As I leave the studio, I overhear the front desk asking a bride-to-be if she’d like to sign up for their “Shedding for the Wedding” program. She says yes, and I silently thank myself for only buying one class at this place, not a whole package.

11:00 am I meet some friends for brunch and try to ignore the table next to us as two beautiful women bemoan how they’re already ruining their diets and it’s not even noon.

11:02 am I notice this menu has “skinny” lattes in addition to regular lattes, if you were worried. I was worried.

12:45 pm A bus just drove by with an ad featuring a sassy woman savoring a tiny piece of dark chocolate. She seems to be letting me in on her size-0 secret: “If you’re gonna cheat on your diet, make it count. But, more important, make it small.”

1:00 pm My friends and I decide to go shopping at this place around the corner that “everyone” has been talking about. “Everyone” finds something to try on except me because they have nothing in my size. A salesperson cheerfully tells me that they do, however, have a pair of black leggings that stretch! I thank her and try on sunglasses.

1:15 pm No luck at the next store either.

1:30 pm Now we’re in a store that tells me to check out their website for larger sizes. I take out my phone and head to the website to kill time while my friends complain from the dressing room about feeling fat after breakfast. There are two styles in my size online and they are so drab I almost think it’s a prank. “The most flattering dress you’ll ever own,” one description promises. The other boasts an “accentuated waist.” I feel an eye roll coming. Maybe I should have bought those sunglasses.

3:45 pm I show up for a massage my husband got me at a super fancy hotel for my birthday. I’ve been looking forward to it for months. Upon signing in at reception, I’m handed a luxurious, fluffy robe and directed toward a changing room.

3:50 pm I discover this robe was meant for a toddler. I’m full-on tits-out and you can read the day of the week on my underwear—that’s how much skin I’m showing. The belt on this thing could be a headband. I don’t want to flash my masseuse, so I get dressed and head back out to the front desk.

4:05 pm I ask for a new robe and am told that they already gave me the largest men’s size possible, but they’ll check in the back for an extra towel. I alternate between apologizing profusely and thanking them sincerely.

4:06 pm I wonder if this debacle is cutting into my massage time

6:10 pm I’m sitting at the movies and can’t get comfortable. The seat is so damn small, I’m going to have to make a move on my husband, who’s sitting next to me, just so I can get my arm in a more comfortable position. He’s having the same problem, though, and I’m reminded why we never come to this theater

6:13 pm A preview comes on for some stupid-but-funny- looking comedy movie that I keep hearing about. There’s a lotttttaaa fat jokes.

9:00 pm We’re home and I get sucked into a trashy TV show featuring a cast of women wearing tight size 00 clothes, vying for the attention of a few pretty unremarkable dudes. Do they all have the same trainer or something? How do they all have the exact same body type?

9:05 pm Find myself googling “cellulite removal laser” just to see how much it costs.

9:06 pm I see that it’s very expensive.

9:07 pm Now my creepy spy of an Instagram account is showing me anti-cellulite creams.

9:09 pm I wonder if I should try the keto diet? Apparently you lose like, fifty pounds in the first day…

9:13 pm I snap out of it. What am I even doing??? This isn’t me. Someone else’s thoughts are inside my head. It’s like I’m possessed by the demon ghost of Societal Beauty Standards or something. Wow. Okay. Time to perform a quick pre-bed exorcism on myself and practice what I preach.

9:14 pm NOPE! Nope, nope, NOPE!

9:15 pm Ah, I feel better already. “Dear bod—you are hot as hell, incredibly moisturized, and smell like lavender. I love hanging out with you. You walked me all over the city today and didn’t once complain about blisters. Thank you for holding me. Now let’s get some rest. Love, Katie.”

Reprinted from Body Talk. Copyright © 2021 by Katie Sturino. Illustrations copyright © 2021 by Monica Garwood. Published by Clarkson Potter, an imprint of Random House.

Source: Read Full Article