Part of a caption about Oprah Winfrey on AOL Health News today read, "Oprah Winfrey, who recently confessed she weighs 200 pounds..."
That's really all you need to read of that caption for the remainder of this blog.
Must the writer use the word 'confessed'? It wasn't a big secret--we could tell she's been gaining weight again. She's one of the most public figures in America, whether or not we want to see Oprah every week, we more than likely do.
Gaining weight isn't a crime. Oprah is still as beautiful in a 16 as she was in a 12, which is what she wore at her lowest weight on her 50th birthday a few years ago. The fact that she's *gasp* 200 pounds changes nothing about her. Nothing, that is, but her health. Oprah's making that the focus this entire week on her show.
She said herself that she can't believe she's still talking about her weight. I'm sure she's just as tired of it as we are, but yet the media won't shut up about it. I applaud Oprah for talking about it, because it's unavoidable for her.
Weight is one of the most emotional issues for women, and one of the hardest to control if you're like myself or Oprah who have incredibly slow metabolisms. My doctor told me after he diagnosed me with a certain disease that my metabolism is that of somebody 5 to 10 years older. Oprah has a thyroid problem which causes her metabolism to slow down as well. This makes us gain weight more easily, and it's also much harder to lose.
A few months ago I got on the scale and it read 180 pounds. I was mortified. My junior year in high school I was 123, by the time I graduated I weighed 150. My weight held pretty steady during the majority of college. Quitting figure skating (which I had done since I was 4) caused an already above average amount of muscle to turn to fat, and the college lifestyle didn't help matters.
I knew I was heavier than 150 by my junior year at SHU, but I never stepped on a scale. When I saw 180, I vowed to never weigh more than that. My mother always tells me that weight the one thing we can control about our bodies. I took that control, and I'm down to 160 just by eliminating pop and ceasing to shove my face at the first sign of fullness. :-)
I'm a size 12 and I'm content, though I still want to lose at least 15 more pounds (so I can skate again without buckling a knee). When I watched the premier of Oprah's "confession" she stated how she felt a 12 was normal for her body, and body type something that needs to be considered more--by EVERYBODY, especially clothing manufacturers.
Not every woman is 125 pounds with bones visible that shouldn't be. I've been working in clothing retail for 7 years and the way sizes have changed astound me. The years that I was 150 steadily, I still climbed up in pant sizes out of juniors into misses. I'm glad I can fit into a juniors 13 again, don't get me wrong, but there's something to be said for that. The sizes alter because the image of size has been altered. Ever seen a Botticelli? He didn't choose to paint women of that proportion because he had some fetish. The kind of women in his paintings were seen as beautiful in that era. When was the last time you opened a magazine and saw a Botticelli-esque babe?
When I look at clothes for women now, the message I get is: If you don't have a perfect body according to today's standards then you don't deserve to look sexy. Nobody wants to see Oprah in a tube top, but she shouldn't feel restricted to spandex and elastic, either.
Nothing I'm saying is news, I know that. That caption just rubbed me the wrong way, that's all.