aging, body image, dancing, enjoyment, family

Dancing Through the Wrinkles

I’m always amazed by the tapes that play in my head. This morning, I was taking pictures of Yakir to show Josh (who was already at work) the funny bed head Yakir had (yes, this is what we do to fill our time). 
So darn cute…bed head and all
And while I was taking these pictures, Yakir and I started having fun and ended up with some delicious pictures. After I got the kid to school and was able to look through the pictures, I thought I might post a few to Facebook.

They were, after all, so darn cute.

But then I saw them.

My wrinkles.

So many wrinkles.

Where did those wrinkles come from? Maybe, my tapes said, I shouldn’t post the pictures because then people will, you know, see that I have wrinkles.

Fortunately, I turned to those tapes and said to them, “Really? Has it come to this?”

And I threw them out the window (the tapes in my head, not the pictures) and posted the pictures. I wanted to put a disclaimer on the pictures (“Ignore the wrinkles!”) and then I realized just how insanely ridiculous the idea was.

I find that we, women, are so darn critical of ourselves. I’m sure not all women are – and I’m sure there are plenty of men out there who beat themselves up – but it appears that women have perfected this skill.

Rather than looking at the love, the adorableness of my bubbly 3 year old, I see my wrinkles in these pictures. And I realize that I do this a lot.

We’ll be on vacation with the boys and we’ll take pictures. And as soon as I see the pictures, I’m looking to see if I was caught at a bad angle. If I look fat in the picture. If all is ok.

Instead of seeing the crazy joy my kids are showing or the exciting thing we are doing, I’m looking for fat rolls and double chins.

I read this article yesterday about what people most regret when they are about to die. I’ve read articles of this sort before and I assumed that it was going to say the same cliché things we’ve all heard. But this article was different and fascinating.

It said that people regret how they’ve treated their bodies and how mean they’ve been to themselves.

One interviewee from the article said, “I’d never admit it to my husband and kids, but more than anything else, it’s my own body I’ll miss most of all. This body that danced and ate and swam and had sex and made babies. It’s amazing to think about it. This body actually made my children. It carried me through the world.”

And then she continued, “And I’m going to have to leave it. I don’t have a choice. And to think I spent all those years criticizing how it looked and never noticing how good it felt – until now when it never feels good.”


Obviously it’s important to maintain a decent weight and to eat as well as possible. But the tapes in my head go beyond this need. And try to ruin the great moments that life offers.

Why, anyway, is fat seen as shameful? Why am I embarrassed by the extra weight I’ve gained this year? Frustrated…fine. Hoping to lose the weight to fit more comfortably in my clothes…fine. But embarrassed? Why? Of what?

So I’m going to continue working on throwing those tapes out the window. Even when the tapes remind me that I don’t look like a model and that I’m no longer 25…I’m going to keep chucking them.

And dancing to the music of my life made by six adorable, loving, rambunctious boys and their father.

Romi Sussman

Neve Daniel

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