”Adele I got very thin, you look like a different person. “
This sentence came to me via a group text message on Wednesday morning because I’m sure it appeared in thousands of other group chats and Instagram DMs after the singer is out of reach I shared a picture of her For her birthday on Tuesday. This was her first Instagram post since December 2019.
In the caption accompanying the photo, Adele used her 32nd birthday to thank the frontline workers fighting the spread of the Coronavirus. She used the appropriate audiences to comment on her apparent weight loss.
“I mean, are you kidding me,” Chrissy Teigen commented, Which without explicitly saying the same thing as the letter in my group text everything.
Teigen’s comment has been “liked” by over 100,000 people.
I’ve been trying to separate any feelings from the word “skinny” for many years. I tell myself it’s just a word, and words have no feelings, right? Kind of like I told myself that foods have no feelings: they can’t be “bad” or “good.” Or, words like “skinny” and “fat” are just words, not identities. Or, fat is just something in your body. Or as I told myself I don’t want – or need – to hear that I “look skinny”.
Except for the fact that I really do.
When I look at that picture of Adele, I feel something like jealousy or maybe just straight jealousy. Well first I feel hopeful that watching the infamous special singer means there is new music coming. But jealousy, too. I feel bad about it, but it’s true. I’m also jealous of people who don’t feel the same way as I do – who somehow manage to really feel at peace with their bodies instead of just pretending they do it online.
The most frustrating thing is that I still feel this despite years of therapy to chase the toxic relationship with food and my body, and the intense effort (with some success) to find acceptance and even happiness with what I look like.
The truth is, we know nothing of the circumstances of Adele’s weight loss, just like we did not know anything about her circumstances Lena DunhamThe weight loss that got a lot of publicity in 2017 – at least, not when that happened. It wasn’t until a year later We are starting to learn exactly What was happening in Dunham’s life, and nothing seemed very good.
Left: 138 lbs., Complete all day long and men suggest it and on the cover of a tabloid about what diets work, “Girls’ creator wrote in Split-screen photo of herself in 2018. Also, patient in tissues and in the head and only live on small amounts of sugar and tons of caffeine and a pharmacy. On the right: 162 pounds, happy and joyful and free, only important people supplement for important reasons, and live on a constant flow of fun / healthy snacks, applications and appetizers, Powerful from raising dogs and spirits. Even this body-positive OG warrior sometimes looks at the left photo longing, until I remember the impossible pain that got me there and on my gay knees. When I write, I feel my back fat rolling under my shoulder blades. I lean in. “
How fortunate we are to have someone like Dunham in the public eye to honestly talk about her experience. I thought of it, too, when my co-worker pointed out the psychological impact that severe weight loss can have on a person. The co-worker noted that “people who didn’t give you time from the day before could suddenly become obsessed with you.” And it makes you believe that if you gain weight again you won’t be loved, which leads to dangerous eating / exercise habits.
Logically, it all makes sense. But when I look at a picture of Adele, it makes no sense that it drives my thoughts or feelings. What makes the situation even more complicated is that because of her talent, I often put Adele on a pedestal and see her light years wiser and more sophisticated than I am now. But then I remind myself that we are about the same age and that she is also a human. We don’t know what’s on her mind or her life – and as we are all constantly reminded but we have to work hard to believe – social media never tells the whole story. However, here we are, collectively congratulating her on being thinner than she was before.
Self-isolation over the past eight weeks has stirred up a lot of thoughts and feelings, including the idea that life is short. Have you heard that? Yes, it’s a cliché, but it’s a cliché because it’s true! And I’ve felt it more than ever lately. Really, when will I stop feeling bad about the foods I eat or wonder about the effect it has on the able and healthy body I’m so fortunate to have? Maybe not today, looking at this photo of a celebrity, but maybe, hopefully, some day soon.
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