- I have a messed up relationship with my body.
- Most models diet like crazy to look the way they do/fit into sample sizes.
The reason I am telling you this today is because last week I had a conversation with a very smart, ambitious, beautiful young woman that I can’t stop thinking about: She and I were supposed to be meeting up to talk about work stuff, but all she wanted to talk to me about was how models stay so thin “without trying”, what I ate when I modeled, what I didn’t eat, how Italian women can be so slender and “eat all that bread and pasta”, etc. At one point, I had to stop her and tell her the plain, unfiltered truth, which is this: I was hungry almost all the time for 12+ years while I was modeling; Even when I was at my absolute thinnest, it wasn’t thin enough for me (and sometimes even my agents); I never felt confident with my body or comfortable in my skin, but I got paid to act confident, so that’s what I did; I still stress about my weight all the time; Most models I know have similar feelings/experiences, but will tell you about how many burgers, nachos, and French Toast they eat all day, everyday, which is really just bullshit 99.9% of the time. Sincerely, don’t believe that unless you watch them eat burgers, nachos, or French Toast with your own two eyeballs (which you probably won’t cause the vast majority actually don’t.) This last point was surprising to her, “Really? Wow…Then why do they say that?” I don’t really know. I don’t recall ever bragging about eating that stuff myself, but I do remember there was a kind of shame to admitting that you had to work hard to fit into sample sizes. I think it has to do with the fact that in the fashion world, the second you’re trying to do anything, you’re uncool. Like, you don’t try to be stylish, you just are. You don’t try to have sex appeal, you just have it. You don’t try to be thin, you just are. You don’t want to be a model, you were just scouted. See what I mean? Effortlessness is a kind of a social capital in those circles.
What bothered me the most about the conversation was that the woman I was talking to was so wonderful, and yet it was clear she viewed practically all of her own self worth through the lens of the size tag on her pants. This madness got to stop, and that includes myself. I’ve written about my body image struggles in the past, but I don’t want to give you the impression that I’m entirely past it. To this day, my inner hyper-critical voice continues to rear its gross, ugly head…especially recently. Like, right now as I write this, my jeans are a little too tight, which means I’ve gained weight, which means part of me has been quietly freaking out, judging everything I put in my mouth, harassing myself when I eat something that gives me pleasure, etc. But this time, something is different: I don’t want to care anymore. When I first had a hard time closing my jeans a few weeks ago, my mind immediately jumped back into “modeling maintenance mode”: eat these things, avoid all these foods, work out this much, obsessive thinking about my body, every time I’d catch a mirror or a window, I’d have to see how big or small I looked from the side – literal crazy town. But then I suddenly remembered that even when I was at my lowest weight of 125 pounds (I am 5′ 11″) that mean voice was still there, telling me to eat less, work out harder, get leaner, etc. So this time, I am not giving my mean voice an inch to grow… or at least I am giving it a chocolate/wine/whatever covered finger every time it opens its mouth.
My new experiment goes like this: Every time the mean voice tells me I shouldn’t eat this, or shouldn’t enjoy a glass of wine with a friend (“all that sugar!”), or whatever stupid/ridiculous thing it is saying, I purposefully eat/drink whatever its telling me not to and give the voice an internal middle finger, kind of like:
So while maybe a few years ago, I would have forgone the opportunity to have a beautiful plate of french toast because my inner voice would be haranguing me, now I’ll take the damn french toast AND stuff it with mascarpone AND top it with Chocolate Hazelnut Syrup because F**K FEELING BAD ABOUT FEELING GOOD. Honestly, life is too short, Chocolate is great, and my body is healthy, strong, wonderful, and allows me to live my life fully and do everything I want to do. And you know what? Just to taunt my mean voice even more, I’ll might even serve my french toast on placemats that have carefree unicorns prancing on them.
Impatient Foodie 5 Ingredient Stuffed French Toast with Nutella Syrup
1/3 cup mascarpone
4 slices cinnamon swirl bread
2 tablespoons chocolate hazelnut spread, such as Nocciolata or Nutella
2 tablespoons unsalted butter
1.Beat 2 tablespoons of mascarpone with 1/2 cup of water and 1 egg until smooth. Spread the remaining mascarpone evenly over two slices of bread. Top each with the remaining slice of bread.
2.Heat the butter in a large non-stick skillet over medium-high heat. Dip the bread in the batter. Then transfer to the skillet and cook until slightly golden, turning once, about 3 minutes per side.
3. Cut in half then transfer to a plate. Place the chocolate hazelnut spread and 3 tablespoons of water in a microwavable safe bowl. Heat until pourable, about 1 minute. Pour the syrup over the French toast just before serving.