Celebrating Celebrities?

Ok, I admit it- I like to read about celebrities.  On one site I frequent, typical headlines include, “XYZ Celeb Debuts Incredible Post-Baby Body” or “ABC Reality Star Shows Off Slim Bikini Body.”  Upon closer inspection, I’ve noticed that these articles make me regard my own body with increasing frustration and contempt!

A several weeks ago, however, I found a refreshingly different interview at Ladies Home Journal.  Mariska Hargitay stars in Law & Order: SVU and has three children.  As the daughter of 1950s and ‘60s bombshell Jayne Mansfield, Mariska inevitably faces questions about her body.  But in a thin-obsessed culture and profession, her answers are surprising.

Of her curves, Mariska says, “I love my curves because they scream, “I’m a mama!” … I’m just grateful that my body is healthy. I want to be on this planet for a long time, so I try to eat things that make me feel good and make me strong. But I also love food and I love life: Some days having that extra bowl of pasta and a Reese’s Peanut Butter Cup means more to me than being thin.”  Did a successful Hollywood actress really just say that?!

And considering her body at age 49, Mariska says, “Things are sagging a bit — I’m not going to lie. But am I going to be upset about the sag or am I going to look at my three gorgeous kids and my husband and count my lucky stars?”

Now that’s the kind of attitude I want to have about my body!  Imagine – if instead of beating myself up about my cellulite, an occasional candy bar, and my creeping weight, what if I regarded my curves as a blessing and as a mark of my womanhood? Fortunately, I have much more to say than “count my lucky stars.”  I can thank and praise the Lord on high who “knit me together in my mother’s womb,” blesses me beyond measure, and gives me a body that is healthy and strong.  That’s something worth celebrating!

~Keri Geary, Downtown

We recently held our Body Matters conference that addresses body image issues with which women struggle.  Reacps can be found here:  The Body Masked, The Body Created, The Body Managed, and The Body Redeemed.  Video and aduio of the conference are available here.