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Palo Alto, CA

Welcome to The Shabby Suitcase - a blog documenting the creative outlets and general wanderings of a nomadic twenty-something. 


The latest adventure.


The Skinny Wish

Marissa Conway


the look: dress by Jack, shoes by Birkenstock


I've always considered myself to have remarkably high self esteem.  I somehow managed to navigate the waters of high school without much fuss over my body image - frantically hoping to fit in, yes, but never worrying about my weight.  College and beyond was marked with defiant resistance to any dips in self esteem and an absolute determination to love myself when I saw so many around me battle daily with self love.  And yet a wild realization stopped me dead in my tracks this morning.  Every day, for years now, a cruel little thought has flitted through my mind: I wish I was skinny.  I wish I was skinny.  I wish I was skinny.

And this coming from a girl who considers herself body positive, fully aware of the societal influence on tricky little thoughts like these.  But I can't shake it.  It seems there's a dark, wicked corner of every woman's mind where nagging little thoughts sit, waiting to feed on our soul, waiting for a moment of weakness, when we look in the mirror, and they suddenly growl:  You're ugly.  You should be thinner.  No one will ever find your body attractive.

But this skinny wish is unfounded.  My body is quite healthy - no, I'm not the size of a Victoria's Secret model, and I'm not sure I want to be.  I'm quite honestly stumped at my inability to shift this kind of thinking (especially now that I'm devoting most of my time to studying gender roles/relations and feminism!).  I suppose there reaches a boiling point where we collectively must say: fuck this.  My time is better spent focusing on my master's program, or my career, or the current political economy, or what show to watch on Netflix tonight.  So, like the girl who doesn't even go here, I will bake myself a cake of rainbows and smiles, and perhaps also keep some colorful vocabulary in my arsenal for when those haunting thoughts creep out from the corners of my mind.