“Christmas is a-coming,” the old song goes, and the goose is not the only one getting fat.
I’ve used that line before and it isn’t as funny as it used to be. Just once, I would like to eat my way through the holidays without picturing, the instant I imbibe in a bit of fudge or a swig of eggnog, exactly how it’s going to look on my hips.
It’s an image I’d welcome if it ever prevented or even gave me momentary pause from partaking in the traditional holiday eating/drinking orgy.
But no, picturing how I will look doesn’t help; it only heaps a big greasy layer of guilt on top of all the fat which, either way, still ends up on my hips.
My friends are no help either. Recently I received an early Christmas gift from Joy, a woman who clearly knows no shame. Having grown up, as I did, in the Deep South (where sugar and fat are two of the four basic food groups, along with alcohol and salt) Joy knows all too well my various vulnerabilities.
And still, she dared to present me with a time-honored token of our heritage – a gift that can only be truly appreciated when bestowed by one Southerner on another –a big old box of Krispy Kreme Doughnuts.
I was so touched, I could barely speak. Especially with three doughnuts in my mouth. When I came to my senses, I offered to share one with her (not a glazed one, of course, because those are my favorites, but perhaps one of the tacky ones with sprinkles.) And she, bless her heart, had the nerve to say, “Oh, no, I wouldn’t think of it, they’re all for you!!” Then she proceeded to tell me about her latest diet on which she has shed enough pounds to wither away from a whopping size 6 to a 4.
What do you think? Should I give her a gallon of my grandmother’s famous “Merry Christmas Eggnog,” a recipe made even merrier by a secret ingredient that my grandfather always slipped into his?
Fat, it seems, is a relative term, especially to my relatives, whose standards for defining obesity vary widely. My aunt Jane, for example, a woman of uncommon kindness and grace, might describe someone (never mind who) as “a mite big-boned, but cute.”
Others in my family (and they know who they are) would not hesitate to say that person is “not bad looking, if only she’d lose a little weight.” Which might explain, while I love all my kin, I liked my aunt Jane better than most.
But the person I like best – in the way that he sees me, or rather, in the way I see myself in his eyes – is my brother Joe. Here’s a tip: If you want a true assessment of your weight and how you wear it, don’t step on a scale; ask a blind man.
“You look good, Sister,” Joe says as he runs his hand over my face to “see” how I look. I feel good, too, when I hear him say it. Too bad I don’t see him more often.
I was thinking this morning about Christmas lights. You know, those little twinkly white lights with long curly strands? By night, they look so lovely, like icicles made of diamonds. And by day, they look like gobs of tacky plastic hair.
They’re the same, night or day, rain or shine, Christmas or the Fourth of July. So are we, really, despite the addition of a few extra pounds or years.
The real difference, it seems, is in the kind of light that shines upon us – whether it makes us feel as lovely as diamonds or as tacky as plastic hair.
My plan for the holidays is to see myself in the best light possible, in the eyes of those who love me as I am, and to reflect that same light on them.
I can always diet in January.
Contact Sharon Randall at P.O. Box 777394, Henderson NV 89077, or at www.sharonrandall.com.