Monday, June 14, 2010

Body of Knowledge

Solve the following problems. Read all instructions, then throw the magazine/book/laptop across the room because one piece of advice about changing your life sounds as good as its contrary about acceptance.


As of this afternoon, I weigh A pounds, which is B pounds more than last summer, C pounds more than the day I got married and the same as when I was D months pregnant.

In the last year my bra size has changed from # to $. Wearing knit shirts and my old bras, I now appear to have X girls instead of Y. My husband does not complain. The conundrum: now that I'm % years old, I've finally found the self-confidence to wear the more revealing clothes I shied from when I was &.

In January, I'll celebrate my Eth birthday and my Fth year as a mother of two girls. Mornings in June, when the healing sun pours down and the warm winds off Lake Michigan caress like a balm, I feel G years old again. After a day running around the museum campus with my daughters, I'm sure I've aged another H.


Find the formula that stabilizes my reaction to the numbers above. How could I be looking and feeling fine Sunday at the pool in last summer's stretchy tankini yet the day before throw a uncomfortably tight pair of shorts down the stairs in a fury?

Home Economics

True or False? The crusts cut off my daughters' peanut butter and jelly sandwiches = lunch.


"You gotta dance like nobody's watchin'." Find all flaws, grammatical, logical and emotional, in this argument.


Q: Determine the force of memory necessary to maintain a state of gratitude. Show your work.

A: This ol' body of mine has allowed me to run for exercise and pleasure, swim icy lakes and salty oceans, paddle canoes and kayaks, dance my shoes off, climb mountains, rappel down cliffs, crawl through muddy caves, chase runaway toddlers down the sidewalk and play 200 or so games of Ring around the Rosie.

Not to mention the glories my senses have granted me: dawn on the water, Montana mountains, Wyoming waterfalls, the marital bed, the glowing skin of our children.

My body has conceived, nurtured and bore two big and healthy babies and made enough milk to give them rolls of baby fat. My hips have been their seats, my breasts their lunch, my lap their beds.

And yet I am utterly at peace with the fact I could never climb the rope in gym class. If I was giving a choice of push-ups or death, I'd have to think about it for a minute.

Original post to Chicago Moms Blog. Cindy Fey blogs at We All Fall Down. Photo by Nathalie Laure.

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