12. Blue Van Woman


I’ve never really had a very positive image of my body.  I’m short with a tendency to be a bit rounded.  When I was with my abusive husband I worked extremely hard to keep it all under control.  I weighed myself, weighed my food, counted my calories – whatever it took.  And of course, the moment I took my eye off the numbers – I slipped back to what I consider my ‘normal’ shape.

Some of my clothes are size 10 , some 12, and some are 14s.

Driving in my blue van and long walks give me time to reflect and wrestle with my thoughts.

I can lift weights, walk miles and crawl around my van – and that will have to do.

I do pool exercises three times a week and the walk from the changing room into the water feels like parading for Miss World (do they still hold that competition?).  Sometimes I think I’m OK and then I catch sight of my reflection – and I’m not so sure.  Then I look at other women and measure myself against them.  Thinner than her, fatter than her – you know how it goes.  I oscillate between – ‘go on a diet immediately’ and ‘you’ll do’ – within minutes.  Largely I am trying to just accept that my skin appears to have peeled away from my body and is set on a downward drift.  Obviously I keep myself covered.  Can you imagine if I went in the gym in a crop top – that garment so loved by the lean and lovely?!

But how would I feel if a man appeared on the scene?

You know, that mythical man that is just going to turn up in the street one day and sweep me off my feet?

At what point should I prepare him for my body?

‘Would you like a coffee’ he says, and I reply ‘yes please, but you have to know that I’ve got a very floppy tummy’.

Would that be the moment?

Or should I just wait and hope that he is so overcome with passion that he fails to notice that my boobs are sliding down and there’s a roll of fat that appears to have sprouted in the last few years?

I could wear my best underwear – but that’s a tee shirt bra and fairly deep knickers (they are a pretty pink though).

I really must buy some new PJs – or should I sleep naked?

When should I mention that if I flex my right leg out too far it really hurts so can we be a bit careful?

Forewarned and all that?

Should he stay the night and if so – shall I warn him that I need to get up for a pee at least once, often twice but that I won’t put the light on?

Will he mind if I read my book at 3 am if I can’t get back to sleep?

Mind you – he might be wondering if he’s got any little blue pills in his back pocket.

Not to mention worrying if he can still do press ups.

PS. Do you like my decal?

Written by Marion, hosted by Carrie 

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