It is easier for me to complain than celebrate. Every (at least one in 6) week we have family meeting. It begins with appreciations. See. I am bored. I cant even write this. I was planning to write about the achingly lovely family meeting we had on the ferry on our way to martha’s vineyard. How connected everyone was. I dont really know how to recount it though. Fruit cups, big smiles, kind words. Oliver telling me I help him solve every problem. Ah.

Just yesterday I picked the kids up from Nature Detectives camp. I told them I could never have imagined the people they would become. When I was pregnant, or they were babies I didn’t know OLIVER and LEO. This interested them. After some discussion Oliver asked what I did think they would be like. “Just like me.” Of course I didn’t think anyone would be just like me, I was talking more about the instinctive new parent viewing child as accessory thing. Plus, I felt that my domineering genes would out wrestle Steve’s polite genes and thus the kids would be just like me.

I looked back to him in the rear view mirror, loving Harbor Rd, loving our life that allows them two days of nature detective camp on the incredible shelburne farms before we cut it short for a trip to Marthas Vineyard and cape cod. Loving these boys who are in fact almost nothing like me. I met his eyes in the mirror. His blond hair brushed them, the were alight with a real smile. Freckles spread on his ski slope nose. “You mean really fat?” he asked.

Whoosh.

Silence.

Storm of thoughts.

(a) I have brought this on by involving them too much in the technology of my diet, synching scales, loseit app, fitbit step counter. Fit- ness and Fat-ness, a topic at every meal, or meal replacement.

(b) It sucks to be called fat. Remembering the time that I stood at the door to my restaurant feeling pretty in a new skirt, thanking customers as they left, and a Burton High jackass met my thanks with a “thanks to you too, fatty.”

(c) This is how he sees me. When I say just like me, he says fat. Scratch that. Very fat. My mama. Fat Person. Very Fat Person.

(d) At least I am trying. I mean, obviously I will fail. But right now I am trying, measuring food, counting steps, watching the calories in/ out equation. This should hurt me less now than if it had come two months ago. That is something to be happy about, right?

(e) Crap. That obviously I will fail comment came from me.

While I remember, judge, condemn, celebrate, and consider a response 10% of me listens to Leo who matter of factly tells Oliver that he has hurt Mama’s feelings, and advises him to apologize.

How DO I feel? I mean…I know Oliver didnt mean to hurt me. We work on not commenting or critisizing things that are out of our control, and circling back to (a) above I have taught the boys that weight is in our control. So this was technically in the field of play.

I think that the worst of it is realizing that This is the first thing my son thinks about when he considers me, AND I not so secretly agree with him.

So back to our lovely morning. Playing reading games, complimenting each other, keeping our voices at lower levels, earning my 10,000 step badge on fit bit. It is real. It is all here in front of me.

The pretty happy life of a very fat person.

Who wil fail. And might keep trying? And will keep trying.

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Anna Rosenblum Palmer is a freelance writer based in Denver, CO. She writes about sex, parenting, cat pee, bi-polar disorder and the NFL; all things inextricably intertwined with her mental health. In her free time she teaches her boys creative swear words, seeks the last missing puzzle piece and thinks deeply about how she is not exercising. Her writing can be found on Babble, Parent.co, Great Moments in Parenting, Ravishly, Good Men Project, Sammiches and Psych Meds, Playpen, Crazy Good Parent, and YourTango. She also does a fair amount of navel gazing on her own blog at annarosenblumpalmer.com.

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