The thing that used to screw up my mind was not an existing wrong sense of security or self-imaging. I have never been anorexic nor bulimic in my entire life and my tiff with weight gain was nothing that can be traced back to my childhood which was pretty crazy, I admit, but relatively normal just the same. It was the prevailing fact that other than food, the only other worldly thing I am obsessed about is fashion. And we both know that food and fashion are not exactly the best of friends. Now Photoshop and fashion, that, lads and ladies, is a match made in sartorial heaven.
Imagine Agyness Deyn, or Natalia Vodianova having a conversation with a Double-Double In and Out Burger. "Oh dahlin' it's absolutely lovely to have seen you again. Every moment without you is like a moment without air. You... complete me." Of course, a conversation like that would only transpire in a parallel universe but here on the third planet, the conversation would most likely be like this, in between bites and barfs... "I hate you Mr. Burger. (Bite) You are so good but so evil for me. (Barf) Why can't I resist you? (Bite) Why must you cause me to be eternally damned with cellulite? (Barf) Damn you Mr. Burger! (Bite) Damn you!" then proceeds to hurl the entire contents of her stomach at the nearest latrine. Okaaaay. Agyness, and Natalia might not have this actual conversation with food, but you do get my point. Food and Fashion are frenemies! And at a certain age, they are just plain old enemies.
On the runway, clothes just lift models somewhere beyond clouds, to a place closer to the feet of gods. They float on the catwalk literally towering above everyone splitting the great, big sea of lesser beings. However, most of those clothes do no such thing to less than perfect, meaning not reed thin bodies. If anything, it just emphasizes further how human we are and how human models are not-- strictly in the sartorial sense, that is. It's just a fact we will all have to live with, clothes fall more naturally and beautifully on mannequins, live ones or not. It helps to begin with good genetics and a body that metabolizes food as quickly as Britney Spears' first marriage. At a certain age though, somewhere after 19, metabolism catches up on them and they have to, just like us, work on maintaining model physique. This fact is probably why in the modelling world, 25 above is considered "Lola" and only Lolitas get primo bookings.
If you ask me, models truly deserve to be elevated in a class of their own not only because of their beauty but also because of how hard they work to maintain their figures. What with their cigarette-coffee-granola-bar or egg-white-omelet breakfasts, matchbox -sized meat portion and a side salad with vinaigrette lunches (which COULD be omitted if there is a shoot), and the fish cooked in "no-shit-I-can't-believe -it's -butter " dinner. I just can't do that stuff. For me it would all taste like "no-shit-I-can't-believe-that's-food." And that is why I have this body and not theirs. Egg-white omelets? Come on. Last Sunday, my breakfast comprised of a freshly (and quite perfectly, if I may say so myself) poached egg with freshly made Hollandaise on top of crispy-edged back bacon sitting smugly atop an English muffin. Alas, I could never betray my Eggs Benedict for egg-white omelets . Not for a million Alber Elbaz for Lanvin single-shoulder, sequin-covered play suits. Alright, maybe just one.
Here's the deal. I respect fashion and admire models. I look at them and I see absolutes and possibilities-- as in absolutely not going to work or possibly a red-carpet moment for me. As I've grown older, I learned to intersect these two parallel lines of real food and real fashion that will never meet on an ordinary plane. I know my body and I've learned that not all that is fashionable is fashionable for me. Goddamit it is not tres chic to be wearing an Herve Ledger bandage dress if my tummy would be "nakatuck-out" in it. That would just be plain revolting. I also would not wear bunny ear rabbit head bands even if Marc Jacobs told me in the flesh to wear them for him. Not even on Easter. And it would be the end of life on earth as we know it, if you ever catch me donning a micro-mini skirt with knee high socks and sandals even if it was seen all over fashion shows from Alexander Wang's to Timbuktu.
Like I said, I respect fashion. But I respect myself, what my body can do and all those people who I may bequeath excruciating pain upon seeing me in an outfit revealing what must be hidden in the secrecy of the Pentagon. I know too that, I ought to get back on the saddle of my spinning bike and maybe one day soon, I will. But it will not be so that I can steal my youth and retrieve my once 23- inch waistline because frankly, I know I am more than my physical self which I have come to love and be quite happy with. After all, it is this body that bore two beautiful children and has gone through many life stories both of love and war with scars to show too. It has come to survive many summers and storms and has acquired what I'd like to believe is a certain je ne sais quoi that is ultimately mine and mine alone.
I will get back on the saddle so I will not have an all too sudden heart attack and leave my children motherless. I will do it for health. And of course...of course... the hedonist that I am, I will do it so that I can have the pleasure of eating Eggs Benedict any day of the week. And twice on Sundays.
*Photo from Style.Com