Fitness Health Healthy Living Mental Health/Wellness Weight Loss

More Power to You Pink

Written by Jamie Sumner

If Pink is obese, the world needs to reverse its orbit in search of a better atmosphere. If this Instagram world is so toxic to our systems that to weigh 160 pounds at 5’3” is shocking, then we need more revolutionary Pinks out there to overload the system. We need, literally, to throw our weight behind messages of hope and power in authenticity. We need to use our bodies for what they were originally intended—to live. Pink’s picture of her sweaty, non-made up self in the gym has received over 200,000 likes. Her call to arms to forget the numbers and choose to inhabit and love your body has garnered thousands upon thousands of us who believe in mind over matter.

My daughter jiggled my leg the other day in a place it didn’t used to jiggle and it got me thinking about the benefits of jiggling, the benefits to a little more padding in the middle decades of life. The thoughts could have gone another way. For years in high school, despite living in the era that rocked overalls and over-sized sweatshirts, I waged war on the jiggle. It was not a life. Blessedly, college and living on my own and then marriage got me over it. I had more important things to worry about, like paying bills and cohabitating with an X-Y chromosome.

And then I had twins, born two months early. They were all spindly limbs and big sleepy eyes. Weeks after their birth the pregnancy app on my phone was still telling me they were the size of large spaghetti squash and to keep up with the whole fat dairy. And then I updated the app. Suddenly, the internet knew I had delivered tiny humans and the message became clear: you better eat those veggies and trim the fat, or else. I’m not sure what the “else” entailed, but it didn’t sound good. I deleted the app (almost) immediately. It still took a lot of pep talks in the mirror and deep-breathing while examining my post-natal self. But these moments were necessary. I was now a mother to two tiny, fragile people who needed me to be strong for them when they could not. They needed me to get over my hang ups so that all that brain power could be re-wired and diverted to the greatest energy source: mothering.

Taking up more physical space in this world was hard. It means waving goodbye to public standards of perfection. It means letting go of a you that could win nods of approval in your “amazing transformation.” It means letting the transformations happen on the inside, in your head and your heart, where no one else can see. We are meant to soften. We are meant to wrinkle. We are meant to inhabit bodies that show the wear and tear of years hard-won and well-lived.

When my daughter grabbed my leg, she looked—triumphant. Like she had run all the bases and finally touched home. That’s what we need to be for our girls, a home base, solid and steady. We need to feel, like Pink, that we are more than numbers and ratios. We are not math equations mapped out by others. As a mom raising a girl in this photo-shopped world, all I wish for my daughter is this: to wield the power to let her body be what it was designed to be, a vessel for caring for herself and the ones she loves so that she can live the strongest, happiest, healthiest version of herself. Because I agree with Pink. It doesn’t matter what the numbers read, as long as you can say at the end of the day that “the only thing I’m feeling is myself.”

Feature image via Instagram

About the author

Jamie Sumner

Jamie Sumner is mom to a son with cerebral palsy and twins. She writes for Parenting Special Needs Magazine and dishes about infertility and special needs parenting on her website, http://mom-gene.com/. She can be found on Facebook @momgene.org, Twitter @mom_gene and Instagram @themomgene. She and her husband live in Nashville, Tennessee and most days you can find her outside with three kids, a dog, and a large cup of coffee.

8 Comments

  • This post is amazing! I have struggled my whole life with body I’mage because in the world’s standards I have not reached the ideal yet. I’m in my fifties so I doubt I will reach it. I love how Pink is showing us real and being happy with what that looks like. Thank you!

    • Thank you Mary! I think we all struggle with what the world tells us is acceptable/applauded versus what is healthy for us and makes us able to live freely. That’s why I loved Pink’s message. It fights for us.

  • I still struggle with the post baby weight but I’ve also reconciled myself to the fact, it’s here to stay so long as I’m nursing because dammit, I’m hungry all the time. With that being said, I’ve given myself and the weight grace. Also pink is amazing.

    • Pink IS amazing as a woman and mother. And yes, grace is all we can give. We would never hurry along our kids’ childhoods so why rush to end the baby (and baby weight) phase? You rock on all levels, Meg, and this confirms it.

  • Pink is referring to the BMI chart which was never designed to tell people about what they’re made of. It was designed by insurance companies to determine risk for heart disease. I wish people would stop using it because, as a trainer and professional fitness educator, we no longer focus on that aspect of measurement any more. Doctors….stop weighing people and figuring their BMI….start looking into their overall health please!

    • I absolutely agree with you on the BMI chart. It does not take in lifestyle, body composition or any of the things that make us humans and not robots.