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Riffing on My Midriff

I’ve got a legitimate question. Why is it that no matter how many grape tomatoes and kale salads I pack in my lunch, my middle still looks like I swallowed the Michelin Man? I’m beginning to look like a preschool drawing; a big circle with twigs sticking out of it.

I realize I have the Guinness family to thank for some of this, but surely after months of never-before-attempted consistent exercise and more steamed broccoli than a pack of wild vegetarians could possibly consume, I should be able to add pants with zippers to my wardrobe by now.

It could be genetics, and if so, then why God, didn’t I take after my mother? I don’t think she ever wore anything with a double digit. Of course, she did eat like a bird, except when it came to black jelly beans and her morning doughnut.

The only thing I can come up with is that I’m over 50 now and I have stretched my skin so far over the years that it has to accumulate someplace and it decided to hang out right at centerfield. What’s worse is that I have a feeling it has taken up residence and has no plans to move.

After a certain age, everything between my shoulders and hips became nothing more than a series of rolls. I lose a roll sometimes and maybe a few of the mountains have turned into hills, but I could still carry a roll of quarters in between them.

This reminds me of when I was in college and read in Cosmo or someplace that you should not be able to fit a pencil under your boobs without it dropping to the floor; even back then I could have fit a pack of highlighters under there.

A while ago I began trying to make peace with the fact that these rolls are probably here to stay. I am trying to take heart each time the count goes down and I lose one of them, dear friends that they’ve become.

I know losing one is a victory. And like a true champ, I want to celebrate every success with a nice slab of cake with a side of ice cream finished off with a helping of deep remorse.

My dream has always been to lose enough rolls so that I could finally look like Meg Ryan. Instead I have to keep wearing baggie shirts that don’t stick to my belly dough.

Oh, I know, I could just get over myself and wear a shirt that touches me. But somewhere along the way I developed a strong aversion to my clothing actually rubbing up against my skin.

I’ve seen other Rubenesque women pull off the clingy shirt, but it’s not for me. Oh, I’ve tried it, but before I even step out of my bedroom to look in the mirror, the shirt is halfway over my head and I’m pulling my waggling arms out of it.

And forget about tight pants. I own about a half dozen pairs of those leggings, mostly black of course. If you see me in them it means all of my jumbo pants are in the washing machine.

I guess if, I mean when, I turn into Meg Ryan I’ll have to write her a letter and ask her if she’d consider dressing like Bea Arthur.  


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