Tuesday, February 1, 2011

Here's the skinny...

NO, this isn't Cindy Brady. This is me when I was about 5 years old.
Kinda cute, huh?
I've been wondering at what age do we stop thinking we are cute?
I was eleven years old. Middle school and puberty can be brutal.
What happens to our self-image? Why are we so hard on ourselves?

This post is probably going to be "blog suicide", but John Mayer sings, "Say what you need to say" right? Okay people, I have some things on my mind that need to be said. And if I offend you, that's not my intent. Please, don't let yourself be offended.

I really appreciated my friend, Stephanie's, post yesterday. I'm relieved to know other people feel the same way I do. When I'm driving on I-15 through Salt Lake and Provo, I feel completely bombarded with offensive and crude billboards advertising plastic surgery and liposuction and such. I don't want to see it and I don't want my children to see it. The media makes me feel like I'm not good enough in any way, shape, or form. Literally.

Why do women feel so pressured to look perfect? Why do so many women in Utah feel that way? Honestly, I feel that way sometimes too. I hate feeling that way; I know it is Satan working on me, trying to bring me down and keep me from focusing on what is really important.

1 Corinthians 3:16-17 "Know ye not that ye are the temple of God, and that the Spirit of God dwelleth in you? If any man defile the temple of God, him shall God destroy; for the temple of God is holy, which temple ye are."

There's a really cute story in the February 2011 Friend called "Beautiful" (page 44). I don't think it's online yet. We read it during FHE last night and I hope my girls got something out of it. I did. I'm almost 36 years old and I still struggle with feelings of low self-esteem. But I've noticed that when I'm consistently reading my scriptures each day, serving others, saying my prayers, and all the little things we're supposed to be doing, I don't feel so bad about myself. For me personally, I also find if VERY important to stay away from media that sends me the message that "I'm ugly" (This can be very hard to find in today's world.)

Speaking of the word "ugly", isn't that an awful word? I don't know about you, but I do NOT allow that word to be said in my house about anything. I think it is very derogatory and harmful. On Sunday during sharing time, a little girl said loud enough for all to hear, "Ooh, look at the girl, her face is SO ugly!" I was horrified to say the least. I don't know who she was talking about nor did I turn around to see. I told her that isn't nice to say and she responded, "Well, it's true." What are we teaching our children?

Elder Jeffrey R. Holland says in this amazing talk, "I plead with you young women to please be more accepting of yourselves, including your body shape and style... In the kingdom of God, the real you is 'more precious than rubies' (Proverbs 3:15)." I know this includes all women, regardless of our ages. I also know we must be more accepting of others.

Are we judging others simply based on their appearance? I had a very interesting experience last week. I have a very good friend who has been my friend since the moment I met her over 7 years ago. I don't know if she reads my blog, but if you do I LOVE YOU! And I hope you don't mind me sharing this story. We went out for ice cream the other night and I noticed several people staring at us (not in a nice way). I don't know how to say this without offending anyone, but my friend really struggles with her weight, mainly from health problems. I don't know if they were staring at me or her, but I could feel my face get hot and my heart start to pound. How dare they judge?! They don't even know us! It was very awkward and I never realized how rude people can be. I felt sorry for my dear friend and I wish other people knew how funny, smart, and beautiful she is! People are so quick to stereotype and ostracize others who look different.

Please, dear blog friends, as small as it may be, I have something I want to get off my chest! Now I know exactly what you're going to say, because I've heard it all before, but I have felt severely ostracized and even ridiculed just like my friend. You see, I have been "blessed" some people might think ... and again how do I say this without offending? Well, I don't really struggle with my weight. And there's nothing special about me other than I have a lot of health problems that prevent me from gaining weight. I know some of you may be thinking "Oh, poor baby, I wish I had your problems!" Well, I'll trade you and see what you think! I don't feel very good most days and it's a real slap in the face when someone "wishes they were like me".

You never know why someone looks the way they do; big or small or somewhere in-between. Don't assume anything. Think before you speak. Do people have to be the same size in order to be friends? No way!

I cannot tell you how many people; so-called "friends" and even complete strangers, have walked up to me and said this, "You are so skinny, I hate you!" I know that sounds silly, but it's cruel. Would you ever walk up to someone and say, "You are so FAT, I hate you!"? No one would EVER say that. Think about it.

This is one of the best talks ever. I know that President Monson is inspired. I really like this quote: "Charity is having patience with someone who has let us down. It is resisting the impulse to become offended easily. It is accepting weaknesses and shortcomings. It is accepting people as they truly are. It is looking beyond physical appearances to attributes that will not dim through time. It is resisting the impulse to categorize others."

I love this quote from Sheri L. Dew: "Why can't we resist the urge to second-guess and evaluate each other?...Sometimes I wonder if the final judgment will be a breeze compared with what we've put each other through here on earth." (No Doubt About It)


  1. Great post Lacy. Ugly is not a word we have banned because it hasn't been abused - or even mentioned really. But it does cross my mind often-referring to myself. I'm going to ban it now. Thank you for your example.

  2. This is amazing. And I completely concur with you... Thank you for being there to say it. You are amazing...

  3. Yes, that is a great post! First of all I LOVE your picture. So cute. I had hot dog hair at age five. I might need to explain that one. Do you remember the original fisher price little people? Some of them had hair that if you look directly at the top of their heads, it looks like the end of a hot dog. You know what I am talking about, right? I had that hair. :)
    Second of all, I don't like driving down I15 to SLC either. I agree. I don't want either my son or my daughter seeing those billboards.
    A few years ago Emily Watts came to speak at some church activity. I can't remember if it was our stake women's conference or a YW thing, but she was great. She talked about self image. It was wonderful. One thing she talked about is how when we are 2 we LOVE our bodies, enough to never want to wear clothes. As we grow older we don't love our bodies like we once did. She then talked about appreciating the gift that Heavenly Father gave us.
    Thanks again for this post!

  4. Lacy, I LOVED this post. Seriously. First of all, I think that's the cutest picture ever!! And all i see is Gabe :) he he. He probably hears that all the time too!!
    And I can't believe you were so kind to the girl in Primary. I think I'm evil. If I know there's a child who says or does things, I don't have patience or tolerance. I think I literally would have turned around (beautiful or ugly) and say, well you know, you're pretty ugly yourself and that's the truth. HA HA HA. NO I would NEVER say that. But I would have LOVED to. Because to me, the attitude and such make a beautiful person quite ugly. See, horrible horrible me. And it's coming from someone who should never say anything mean cause of Wade...yikes. I'm evil.
    And I would have been absolutely the same way if I saw someone and my friend were being judged. It makes me feel sick that people can be so prideful about themselves and so horrible to others. I want my kids to know they are beautiful and to treat everyone the same way they want to be treated. is that too much to ask?!
    Anyway, of course you are so beautiful and skinny. and I don't hate you!! Makes me want to be more like you!!! I will someday be almost as pretty and skinny as you!! You are awesome!!! Thanks for being the awesomest person in the whole wide world!!!

  5. I love your quotes and links. We have got to learn to be nice or leave each other alone, but stop being/thinking/saying/glaring mean. I know it's hard, and we all struggle sometimes because of our OWN insecurities, but we've got to stop.

  6. AMEN, SISTA! I am thankful I don't have to drive on the freeway here very often with my kdis. Houston's billboards are terrible.

  7. First of all Lacy your BEAUTIFUL!!! It is sad that the media puts so much emphasis on outward appearance. Have you seen the dove evolution video If not check it out http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Y2IR_fMglRA If that doesn't work just type in Dove evolution commercial on you tubes site. I don't like the word ugly either. The word stupid is also banned. We are all sisters and it's time we treated one another respectfully. Hugs!

  8. I really enjoyed reading this post. So many good things to think about. I'm glad that you and people like Stephanie are willing to share your thoughts on this very important subject.

    I don't like all the billboards on I-15. Once I called the number of the doctor that was being advertised and told them I didn't like their billboard. The secretary who answered the phone didn't know what to say..

  9. You know how you feel when you work really hard on a handmade gift for someone...you put in so much thought, love, and time to make something they'll love.
    Well then how would you feel if they took one look at it and just started criticizing it? "Why did you make this part so big? Why is this part that color? Couldn't you have made it look more like that girl's?"
    This is the analogy I think about when I start to get down on myself about my appearance. My loving Heavenly Father made this body just for me. Who am I to question his choices?

  10. This post really is true! I do think about skinny people and I hate them....
    Mostly becuase it's taking so much work.
    but, people probably hate me for my fancy homemade costumes.
    I have realized that everyone has their problems, mine is just my weight.
    Pure jealosy, and we aren't supposed to covet, so I should be better. :)
    I also think the billboards are hilarious when I drive through happy valley, we have nothing like that here!

  11. great post lacy! i needed that quote from pres. monson, great reminder. thanks!!


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