Growing up my parents insisted that we pay attention to not only academics but athletics as well … Both team and those exercise regimens that would provide health and well being – hopefully a life long joy and benefit provided. So there was tennis lessons, later on golf and more. But this essay is mostly about appearance and even though my two older brothers also attentive to matters of weight and such – being the only daughter meant this topic needed addressing even more. The honest and evident truth is that in spite of my Mother being an early on feminist she was aware of the reality of being a woman in our society – that is looks do matter.
Important to mention that my parents were also exacting in instruction that while appearance indeed important it was NEVER to be our main life focus nor that which dictated our choices. Complex ideas I agree but that was the tonality and wonderfulness of being my parents child – all beneficial and substantive – of lifelong benefit and that which until this day at sixty years old I am beneficiary to in many important ways.
So why title this essay “The Photo On The Fridge“? you must be thinking. Well when I was a teen and young woman it was a very popular notion – often suggested in magazine – to cut out that gorgeous model’s photo that you admire and longed to look like to place on refrigerator in order to deter you from consuming those extra calories. In my parents homes there was to be none of that …Too close to what one might say is cult like “false idol worship“, which by the way I agree with even now. Instead what was promoted as part of our healthy lifestyle was if thinking this or that beautiful and well toned individual might be what we ourselves aspired to then by all means take into consideration how they might maintain that appearance – needless to say ONLY if a balanced way in reference to nutrition ad such.
My parents cleverly intoned the idea of what one might describe as a “non compete clause” in all they taught us … That is never was envy to be impetus for that we all know leads to self hatred and evil actions in many instances as the envious individual needs to soothe their insecurity with the mantra “I have what REALLY matters”– which of course is a case of thou profess too much. How relates to our topic at hand? Simply that by ignoring ones own either less than realistically healthy or attractive appearance or that if so than the mere fact that by being somewhat of a poseur with no substantive content to fall back on that unconscious and mentally unstable insecurity leads to self destructive activity against self and others. All in all best and actually ONLY healthful productive way to live is being 100% honest with self about all aspects of ones life – than as my parents taught and I do children – decide, plan and begin to achieve that which you need and want whether in appearance, professional achievements and even acquired lifestyle items [home and hearth one might say]. This my dear readers is singularly in being both REALLY happy and having desired life accomplishments – no energies wasted nor misdirection from goals.
My words here do not mean one can not use examples of those they would love to be more like nor those they wish – – maybe even fear becoming like … Motivation toward or away from that which has created a person you believe demonstrates template which might inform you toward a positive direction and equally those [as some I write about] of whom you by knowing much about them are lessons in what becoming would be disastrous and far from your own chosen path. Now here an important lesson [one of] my late wise erudite Mother insisted I learn must be mentioned. Never be as your nemesis that serves as example and motivation away from that which your fear being by denying that small part of them that might indeed be [especially in consideration of their backgrounds and reality] accomplished – no for then you are only as unstable or as unsuccessful in REAL terms as they are and likewise no longer able to use them as lesson on how not to live. So you see being REALLY honest about both those you admire and aspire to be like – never placing those people in false idol status and accepting with documented and honest observation those you fear becoming like you have the perfect motivation and contentment.
Well I end this essay with a confession … Grant it I believe beneath my intellectual and Jewish faith instruction but what the hell right? The miscreant nemesis you often read about in my blog – those my husband are suing and pursuing prosecution against are the prime daily example to myself, my husband, family and friends of what NOT to be in life … On many levels I assure you but as this essay is about appearance mostly – well as a woman – that too. You see and here I must not be less than blunt … Both lack of willingness to either take time and effort or denial of their REAL presentation to self and world leaves many let us say that photo on my fridge and elsewhere that leads AWAY from everything they are, are not, do and do not do … Yes I fear becoming them and let me tell you that is REAL motivation. Quite beneath us but my hubby often jokes he will assist me in my already rather healthy compulsory attention to nutrition, exercise, skin care and other by printing out certain individuals photos for me as reminders. Naughty are we not? Actually no need for that as these people ever present through the documentation of previous and their still stalking, harassing and worse us – as well as preparation for soon legal cases and my publishers hope after my contracted first two books, I agree to another singularly about my nemesis. Oh and by the way this is not hyperbole for I REALLY do fear ever being like these individuals … Of course as my family, friends and colleagues remind me that could actually never happen – thank G-d!