I’ve seen and read about the Abercrombie CEO’s comments and I have tried to take it in simply as information and leave it at that. But being who I am (an overly opinionated woman who claims tenacity as one of my greatest characteristics), I have a couple things to say. No, I am not calling for a boycott. If you know what this company is standing for and you still would like to pay $50 for a t-shirt, by all means, this is a free country (for now at least..but that is another rant for another time). Will I ever walk into the store? No. Would I fit into their clothes even if I did? No. Am I fat or even overweight? Absolutely not. I am back to the weight I was when I got married almost 5 years ago when I wore a size 2/4. The difference is that after 2 good sized babies, I actually have some shape. This company claims they carry my size, but I can promise you that it will never fit my shape. Am I a healthy “All American girl?” Yes. And proud of it.
You see, I understand that there are a lot of people that struggle with weight. I understand that there are a lot of people who are not just “larger” men and women, but actually have become obese and do not take care of themselves. I also understand that a particular cut of pants and a particular size of clothes should not be the basis on which I determine my self worth.
I work with teenage girls. I have 2 daughters of my own. I pray that those girls and my own daughters (one day when they are old enough to understand) will hear what I am saying. Your self worth is not based on what you look like or what size your wear or what name brand clothing you prefer. You are more than just a pretty face for some misguided CEO to make money off of. You are not popular because of the clothes you wear and if you are, you are wasting your time with people who obviously don’t care about you as a person if your status will change if your clothing brand changes.
God has blessed this world with people of different colors and shapes. Yes, please get healthy if you are not, but if you are healthy, do not judge yourself against anyone else.
When I was in high school, I was little. A size 2 with no hips or chest, but some butt. Sadly, I didn’t feel little. When I looked at the girls in my class who were twigs, I felt fat and unattractive. In 9th grade, it caused me to fall into an eating disorder. Thankfully, I became involved in sports which forced me to eat better and take care of myself. But, I always felt like the ugly one in the class.
I wasn’t, but as a very impressionable teenager, I allowed the mind tricks to take over and Satan to deceive me. This allowed my defenses to fall and thus led to other stupid mistakes in the coming years.
I still have days that I don’t feel “pretty enough.” I still have a pair of “fat pants” that I pull out on those days that nothing seems to fit. But, at 27, I have finally become confident in the woman I was created to be. I have adult acne that flares up from time to time. I have a weird shape that doesn’t fit into the “popular” clothes, despite being a particular size in every other brand name. I have dark hair that needs to be plucked and shaved, and grays on my head before I even hit my 30’s. But I love the way I look. I couldn’t say that 10 years ago, but I can now.
More so, I want my daughters to be able to say that simple sentence long before I was able to. I want them to grow up confident because they are more than a pretty face. I want them to enjoy how they look in clothes but to not feel like they have to wear a particular name brand to fit in. I want them to be strong in spirit, to resist the devil’s deceptive lies that tell them that if they have acne, they aren’t pretty, or if they are a pear shape over a straight rectangle, they aren’t pretty.
Magazines lie. They are airbrushed and “perfect” because an artist and large team of professionals made sure that they were. That is not real life. Even the ultra skinny models are not perfect. Actresses are not perfect. They are simply made to look that way.
What is perfect and beautiful is reality. It’s “real women.” It’s young ladies who don’t feel like they have to have make-up on every day to be pretty. It’s teenagers who prefer modesty to “popular.” It is a generation who take responsibility for their own health (not asking any government or organization to do it for them), and love the shape that God has made them.
That is what it means to be an “all American.”