Two years ago, when Ellee was in First Grade, I remember walking in her room to find her standing alone with a strange look on her face. Suddenly, she looked up at me with tears in her eyes and said, “Mommy? Am I skinny or fat?” I’ll be honest. My heart dropped. Because I could not believe that at 7 years old, she’d even have the slightest concept of what those words meant.
I recovered fairly quickly to tell her that in our house we do NOT use those words. When we talk about how we want our bodies to be, we use words like “healthy” and “strong.” And of course, I ended with the truth that it’s much more important what our heart looks like because God always looked on the inside of people and not so much on the outside. Then I gave our darling girl and hug and we moved on with life.
And over the years, I’ve looked for opportunities to help our daughter have good thoughts and ideas about her body. When the weather is nice, we love to ride bikes and take walks and yes, sometimes I strongly encourage her to run with me. But lately, with our going on three winter storms this week, we’ve been relegated to indoor activities. So this morning, when they announced the two hour delay, I asked Ellee if she wanted to work out with me. To my delight, she said, “Sure!”
We found a great workout on Daily Burn. When I quit my gym last month, I signed up for this online workout library from Hulu. And I couldn’t be more happy with how it’s “working out.” I have a great library to choose from and I can fit them into my schedule which is helpful these days. And the best part? It’s only $12.95 a month. Compared to the $40 I was spending for my gym membership, it’s a nice way to save money while still getting in quality workouts. Also, while it may seem like I’m trying to sell something, I’m not. I just really enjoy it and wanted to tell you all about it too.
Back to this love. She’s a champ. She did the workout with me like a pro.
And when she got tired, she laid down and took a break.
She even created her own workout, using the elastic strap from my yoga mat.
She’s so inventive, this one.
And it made me think of how I wanted to share about the importance of helping our daughters learn to have healthy and happy body images. In our home, it’s been about speaking truth about what God says (she has a huge poster that reminds her that she is fearfully and wonderful made) and having fun working out when we can.
I hope and pray that our daughter will learn that her worth should never come from her weight. It’s a struggle and a trap that we women all deal with at times. But as I am able, and as our daughter is growing up, it’s my goal to help her learn that she is indeed fearfully and wonderfully made and that God has great plans for her. So I’ll continue to teach her to value being strong and healthy and pray that she will learn and embrace these truths.