Afros and Muffins

I’ve been writing non-stop for a few days now for other sites with very specific topics and a certain style, so this is a brain dump to flex my other muscles. Or free writing. Okay, free writing. I prefer that. 

A few friends and I were discussing how we feel about our bodies, clean eating, diets, exercise, how some of us (ahem, me) cannot possibly give up dairy and things we love such as chocolate, and how certain things work for some, not for others. After all, we all have different bodies, metabolism rates, and lifestyles. What struck me most about this conversation was this – how non-judgmental everyone was, how informed some of us are, how everyone happily shared what worked for them, and offered ideas, encouragement and support.

Then I started combing through old pictures to look for something specific (if you must know, a picture of me in an afro wig – okay, here it is), and I saw what I looked like 6 years ago.

Afro

Six years ago, pre-children. The story behind this moment? Not as epic as you’d think.

And I thought, damn, I did not appreciate this body back then. I still found fault with it. Today, I don’t look like that. My boobs are not so perky. My arms are definitely flabbier. I haven’t seen my stomach that flat in over 4 years. Yet. Yet. I cannot bring myself to diet, or clean eat, or give up the food I love. I can’t motivate myself to exercise as often as I should. Instead, I bake buttermilk chocolate chip cupcakes. And banana coconut muffins (which you can check out at Scary Mommy!).

buttermilk chocolate chip muffins

Too many chocolate chips? Ya think?

Am I happy with my body now? No. Am I miserable with it? Not really. I’m not overweight by any means, but I could look better. Toner. Tighter in areas. But the chocolate. And baked goods. Cake. Dairy. 

I suppose more sleep would probably help. Apparently lack of sleep contributes to weight gain, or at least, the inability to lose it. Sleep, overall, is a good thing and I’m not getting enough of it. It’s my fault. I should go to bed earlier. I should take naps. I should get the toddler to sleep through the night. God knows there are a million blog posts and articles out there about this. Heck, I even wrote one this week for Everyday Family (some friends offered me their tips, you should check it out).

I am my own greatest enemy. I self-sabotage at all turns. If my body is my temple, I am desecrating it. Okay, maybe not to that extreme. But I’m definitely not making it fit for prayer. Or something. See, brain dump? Er, free writing.  And some heart pouring

Are you happy with your body?

 

 

Alison
I am a former PR and marketing professional turned work-at-home mother to two boys, born December 2009 and May 2012. After a 10-year career in various PR agencies, and of the world's biggest sports brands, I traded in launch parties, product launches, and world travel, for sippy cups, diapers, and breastfeeding. Aside from this blog, I am a contributing writer at Everyday Family. My writing has also been featured on Mamalode, Families In the Loop, andThe Huffington Post.
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  • August 21, 2013 Arnebya

    It amazes me how different each of us is but how each of us can/will/do find SOMETHING about our bodies to pick apart. Overweight, underweight, moles, freckles, things no one else sees but that we determine ungood.
    Arnebya recently wrote…IgnitionMy Profile

    • August 22, 2013 Alison

      I know, we are lame, aren’t we? Why can’t we just be happy with what we’ve got, for at least a minute?

  • August 21, 2013 tracy

    You’re hot. I love you. xo
    tracy recently wrote…Ode To The Little Toilet Paper PiecesMy Profile

    • August 22, 2013 Alison

      I *was* hot. Love you too. xo

  • August 21, 2013 Natalie

    Nope, not happy at all. And it’s all my own fault. Several months back, I started working out and really seeing some amazing results. And when I got to the point where I thought “I’m totally good with how I look and feel”? I stopped working out. Ridiculous. But I’m gearing up to start back on the exercise train now that the kids are all back in school :)
    Natalie recently wrote…You Know You’re a Mom When…You’d Consider Selling Your Kids To GypsiesMy Profile

    • August 22, 2013 Alison

      You’ve done it before, you can definitely do it again, and rock it!

  • August 21, 2013 Lady Jennie

    I am getting to the point where I am happy. It’s not that I want to settle, but all the years that I kept thinking my old weight and body shape were right around the corner have been wasted. Because they weren’t. And I wasn’t happy while I was waiting for it.

    I think I’m getting to the point where I’m happy now. I just want to live a long heathy life for my family’s sake.
    Lady Jennie recently wrote…Creamy Chive CucumbersMy Profile

    • August 22, 2013 Alison

      I’m glad you’re in a good place now. I hope I’m getting there myself.

  • August 21, 2013 MomWithaDot

    There’s no such thing as too many choc chips !! :)

    About the body happiness…..Nope, certainly not. Hang on! It isn’t about size / shape – I’ve always been overweight – only back then, it used to be called chubby. Nothing I was proud of, nor ashamed of. Just a state of being that never bothered me. But now, little injuries happen easier than they used to, my daughter casually remarks I can’t run as fast as her (true) – Sigh! THAT’s the part that bothers me. But the good thing, I AM doing something about it – tiny steps, but when they are big enough to make a difference, I tell ya’ll. Phew! Thanks for getting me inspired first thing in the morning – YAY!!!

    • August 22, 2013 Alison

      I’m glad you’re taking steps to get to a better place with your health and body (and I put that in the order of importance on purpose!). Good luck!

  • August 21, 2013 sisters from another mister

    Yes, this. All of it. But older ;)

    • August 22, 2013 Alison

      Oh hon, you’re not much older. For the record, I think you look fabulous. xo

  • August 21, 2013 Ashley Leona

    If lack of sleep contributes to the inability to lose weight then I definitely understand why it’s hard to get the pre-baby body back. I haven’t got a good nights (or even longer the 3 hours) sleep since my son was born in January!
    Ashley Leona recently wrote…DIY Nursery Collage – Weekend ProjectMy Profile

    • August 22, 2013 Alison

      Ashley, I haven’t slept properly since 2009 when my first was born. :)

  • August 21, 2013 Kim

    My weight has fluctuated over the years, but no matter what it was, I was never truly happy with the state of my body. There was always something that needed improving. I started a new way of eating and exercising a few months ago, and I am just taking it day by day. Right now I am focusing on the goal of being healthier, without a number on the scale or a certain size in mind.
    Kim recently wrote…The ShiftMy Profile

    • August 22, 2013 Alison

      Kim, that is the way to go I believe. To be healthy and happy, not skinny and miserable. Go you!

  • August 21, 2013 Elaine A.

    I am pretty sure I have never seen those two words in a blog post title together before! HA HA!!

    And to be honest, I am not so happy with how my body looks right now but I AM happy with what it can do. And now I just need to quit eating like a pig! (but man, muffins and chocolate are so good!) *sigh*

    And you my dear, look great!! xoxo
    Elaine A. recently wrote…ClashingMy Profile

    • August 22, 2013 Alison

      Hah! The thing is, after I published the post, I realized that ‘muffin’ can also apply to the state of my belly. Sigh.

      The thing is, we need to be strong, right? I believe we are strong. I *did* look fabulous in that picture. I was at my fighting fittest. How I wish I’d appreciated it more.

  • August 22, 2013 Greta

    There is no such thing as too many chocolate chips. You know, I think everyone should do what makes them both healthy AND happy. Having a toned, tight body doesn’t mean you’re happy OR healthy. Eating cupckaes for every meal doesn’t mean it either. It’s all about moderation and treating yourself to what makes you feel good (be it muffins or cheese or yoga or running), I think.
    Greta recently wrote…Surrounded #iPPPMy Profile

    • August 22, 2013 Alison

      You are wise for one so young! :)

  • August 22, 2013 MomChalant

    I wrote a post yesterday about things to look forward to when getting in shape (other than getting skinny) in hopes for more motivation to get my old body back. I’m in the same boat you’re in. I’m not overweight, but I could definitely burn some fat and tone some muscle. I can be pretty good about working out, but I usually quit if I don’t see results in 3-4 weeks. It’s hard to keep pushing myself when I’m dying to see the results.

    I just started Turbo Fire on Monday and I have a friend that has INCREDIBLE RESULTS. She noticed a huge difference by day 16, so I’m pushing my limits and hoping for results like hers.

    And damn those cookies.
    MomChalant recently wrote…10 Things To Look Forward To When Getting In Shape (Other Than Getting Skinny)My Profile

    • August 22, 2013 Alison

      Good luck, Ashlee! Do stick with it. It’s great that you have a friend as a motivator. One shouldn’t have to work out alone, especially being surrounded by cookies. Also, you are young, you will rock this! (so says the 37 year old, sigh)

  • August 22, 2013 Nicole

    I seriously doubt there is a single woman on the entire planet who is 100% happy with her body! OK, maybe Heidi Klum, but they don’t call her ‘The Body’ for nothing! But all kidding aside, I don’t really think there is a perfect body, and the sooner we accept that, the happier we’ll be. I’ve finally realized, after years and years of beating myself up, that losing a few pounds and having super toned arms or washboard abs really won’t make a huge difference in my life or make me happier. And giving up the things I LOVE, like ice cream and fountain Coke, will only make me miserable and cranky. We’re our own worst critics, but I’m trying to give myself a break these days. When I look at my not-so-perky breasts, I remember they nursed my daughters for 2+ years. When I look at my not-so-tight tummy, I remember that it gave my girls a home for 9 months each. And when I look at my legs that I wish I could magically stretch out to be a few inches longer, I remember that they are going to kick major ass in a fall marathon! So bring on the ice cream and fountain Coke!! I’ve earned them! And you’ve earned those muffins Alison!
    Nicole recently wrote…According to Plan, MostlyMy Profile

    • August 22, 2013 Alison

      Oh Nicole, you have most certainly earned it!
      Me, notsomuch. But I can’t beat myself up over it (unless that counts as working out). I’ll just have to find a place of new comfort and happy.

  • August 22, 2013 Jenn

    I will never give up chocolate. Ever.
    Jenn recently wrote…Starting OverMy Profile

    • August 22, 2013 Alison

      I don’t think I will either.

  • August 22, 2013 sarah reinhart

    I am so over self-loathing and deprecation. I gave those things up when I turned thirty a few years ago. I’m healthy. I could be more toned, but that will come some day. I’ve truly found they happier thoughts I think about myself, the better I look. It works for me :)

    • August 22, 2013 Alison

      I think you look amazing.

  • August 22, 2013 Poppy

    I need to borrow that wig. Do you still have it? I’ve given up a lot over the years for vanity, but sometimes you do just need chocolate!
    Poppy recently wrote…My First MammogramMy Profile

    • August 22, 2013 Alison

      Unfortunately, that wig belonged to the company (hah!). I wish I’d kept it, it made me feel fabulous.

  • August 22, 2013 Keely

    Good Lord, I love that photo. I kinda think that’s gonna be my “Mind’s Eye” pic of you from now on. Alison Lee, Awesome Person. (Regardless of arm/belly/baked good intake status. Can I join you in that club? You bring the baked goods. I’ll…bring the not-so awesome boobs.)
    Keely recently wrote…5 Things I Managed Yesterday.My Profile

    • August 22, 2013 Alison

      You’re welcome anytime, my friend.
      I’ll make sure I wear the ‘fro. xo

  • August 22, 2013 Alison Hector

    Loving the afro! Cut a few inches off and we could pass for twins. ;-) But on the topic of “but the chocolate. And baked goods. Cake. Dairy.”… definitely cosign. The bangin’ bod will have to wait a bit,no? LOL
    Alison Hector recently wrote…On a watch for freedom…My Profile

    • August 22, 2013 Alison

      With the baking and chocolate obsession – yes, it’d have to wait, twinsie!

  • August 22, 2013 Twingle Mommy

    I don’t hate my body but we are BFFs either. I go to the gym enough to be in better shape but my diet cancels out much of my workout. I’m eating candy as I type this, it may not be healthy but it is delicious!
    Over from PYHO
    Twingle Mommy recently wrote…Where do your Kids go to Preschool? – It’s ComplicatedMy Profile

    • August 22, 2013 Alison

      Oh, candy. Sigh. Thanks for stopping by!

  • August 22, 2013 Tamara

    I’m ok with it – the scale showed me a number today I hadn’t seen in two years so that was nice. I’m petite – you can probably tell by my photos. 5′ 6″ and always under 120 pounds. However it’s not a tight, toned 115 or so. And I know I could get there if I stopped eating and drinking what I eat and drink. Or..exercising. So I guess I’m happy enough with it not to make a better effort, but not exactly thrilled and traipsing around in a bikini either.
    Tamara recently wrote…Some Things You Just Know.My Profile

    • August 22, 2013 Alison

      Fortunately, bikinis are not default everyday wear. I’ve seen your photos, I think you look fab.

  • August 22, 2013 jasi

    So with you on this. I did not appreciate my body in my 20s and it was really adorable. I was just not impressed. The only thing I really, really miss is the ease with which I could once lose any unwanted weight. Like, “Ooh I got a little soft in the middle.. I’ll skip dessert for a week.” And BAM! the 5 lbs would disappear like magic! Not so in the 30s and it’s got me thinking, I’d better figure this out right quick before the four-zero heads my way.

    • August 22, 2013 Alison

      I know what you mean – I never had to worry about weight at all. Ever. Sigh.

  • August 22, 2013 Roxanne

    I’m not happy with my body, but I know how you feel looking at those past photos. Back when I “thought” I was overweight. Oh how I wish for that body again.

    But food. Oh delicious food.
    Roxanne recently wrote…I think my grass is dying. Can I borrow a watering can?My Profile

    • August 22, 2013 Alison

      Damn delicious food. Sigh.

  • August 22, 2013 Jennifer

    I haven’t met very many people that are happy with their bodies. Learning to love yourself is a process, a very long, maybe never-ending, process.
    Jennifer recently wrote…10 Things to Do In Galveston, TXMy Profile

    • August 22, 2013 Alison

      As always, you are absolutely right, Jennifer.

  • August 22, 2013 Allie

    That seems like a loaded question. The short answer? Yes. Is it perfect? Of course not but it’s healthy. I happen to love running, it’s given me healthy twins with the scars to match and most of all, it’s the only one I’ve got! Now, about those banana coconut muffins…
    Allie recently wrote…A NIGHT IN BOSTON WITH JAY-Z & JT!My Profile

  • August 22, 2013 Angie Kinghorn

    I was just thinking today about how we look at former photos and think, “Wow!” and that I should keep in mind that if I feel bad about my body today, I will someday look at a picture and think it was fabulous.

    And then you go and put it into eloquent, beautiful words.

    Just perfect.

    xo.
    Angie Kinghorn recently wrote…Psst … You have lipstick on your teeth!My Profile

    • August 22, 2013 Alison

      Aw, thanks, you. For the record, I think you look fabulous NOW. Put that in your memory book, ‘kay?

  • August 22, 2013 Leslie

    It is always painful for me to go back and look at pics of myself before kids because I so totally did not appreciate how young and FIRM I was! God, if I knew then what I know now? I would have spent way more time naked in public. And YOU my friend? Gorgeous then and now, inside and out.
    Leslie recently wrote…Because Internet friendships are real, and so is cancer…My Profile

    • August 22, 2013 Alison

      You can still be naked in public, I think you look fab! Especially with that beard.

  • August 22, 2013 melissa

    I am honestly happy with most of it…but I have days where I reealllyy focus on the parts I do not like. One thing I will never do is voice it when I am thinking anything negative about myself. I have not only myself to worry about when I say things like that but my kids. And if I am thinking something negative I force myself to think about something I do like. It helps a lot!

    By the way that picture is just amazing!
    melissa recently wrote…Pintober?My Profile

    • August 22, 2013 Alison

      You’re right, we have to be aware of what we say around our children, and that we don’t project our feelings about our bodies onto them. I want to be a good example to my boys, that’s for sure.

  • August 22, 2013 Leslie

    I have to laugh at that last question; because…well, just take a look at my last post! I actually have no real memory of being happy with my body. That’s sad, isn’t it? I’m so glad you found encouragement and goodwill in your friends. “Program Proponents” can get very pushy. All I can say is that when you’re truly ready, you’ll figure it out. That, and you looked smokin’ hot in that wig & tank top! :-D
    Leslie recently wrote…{Weigh In Wednesday} Week 33My Profile

    • August 22, 2013 Alison

      Oh yes, I *was* smoking hot back then. Too bad I didn’t realize it then. :)
      I think you’re doing great. You’re taking steps towards a healthier lifestyle. That can only be a good thing.

  • August 22, 2013 Carrie

    Am I happy with my body? Eh?

    I could be happier with it, yes. But I’m really happy with who I have become over the last few years and that overshadows the stretch marks or cellulite on the back of my thighs.

    I’m with you…there’s too much good stuff out there to miss out on! And I’d most likely then be unhappy if I DID miss out on it.
    Carrie recently wrote…Somehow, I end up getting more at home when I’m not at home. Coincidence? I think not.My Profile

    • August 22, 2013 Alison

      It’s a good place to be, when you’re happy with who you are, inside and out. That’s awesome, Carrie.

  • August 22, 2013 erin margolin

    love this, love you, your honesty.i don’t exercise and i eat too many sweets. i loathe my body. but i am grateful to others like you who are so brave to put it all out there like this.

    xoxo
    erin margolin recently wrote…Someone Like YouMy Profile

    • August 22, 2013 Alison

      I don’t think your body is loathesome at all. You’re too hard on yourself. Like we all are. Love you. xo

  • August 22, 2013 Natalie

    Oh yes..we certainly didn’t see what motherhood would do to us…and I am like you and have a hard time to give up the food I like and lack motivation to exercise…I guess I am self-sabotaging as well!
    Natalie recently wrote…ZAZOO Kids Photo Clock Review & Giveaway!My Profile

    • August 22, 2013 Alison

      Natalie, I don’t know what you’re talking about because I’ve seen your pictures, and you look fab!

  • August 22, 2013 FitBritt

    Sometimes for me it’s less about what I look like and more about how I feel. Sometimes I eat a ton and hardly workout and I feel great. Other times I workout like crazy and eat nothing and I feel blah. I am trying really hard not to be so negative about my body though!
    FitBritt recently wrote…National Lemonade Day and a Never-ending SummerMy Profile

    • August 22, 2013 Alison

      It is about what’s inside, isn’t it? How we feel. I think you look fab, Britt! The Fit. ;)

  • August 22, 2013 Leigh Ann

    Just this morning I pulled on a pair of shorts – ones that fit before I started running, that got too big, but now fit again and were tight. And I fell apart. I go through phases of caring so much, feeling great, then slipping, then feeling awful about myself, to then being depressed about it and feeling like I will never win. It actually ruined my whole day.
    Leigh Ann recently wrote…Embrace itMy Profile

    • August 22, 2013 Alison

      Ugh, I’m so sorry. That’s shitty and it sucks. But today’s a new day, right?

  • August 22, 2013 Jessica

    From what I’ve seen, you look better now than I ever did, even at my thinnest (so, go ahead and have those yummy looking muffins!). I have always struggled with my weight. Stomach issues and weight loss goals have led me to give up a lot of my favorite foods, or at least find suitable replacements (dairy free, gluten free, reduced sugar… fun!). But I do feel a lot better, and I weigh almost 40 lbs less than I did 2 years ago. Am I worried about not being toned? No way, I’m just happy if I feel good, have more energy, and can fit in a size 10 jeans! :) PS: Sleep? What’s that? ;)
    Jessica recently wrote…Writers Workshop: Photo JunkieMy Profile

    • August 22, 2013 Alison

      40 lbs lighter and size 10 jeans? Girl, I think you’re doing amazing.

  • August 22, 2013 Elizabeth

    This has definitely been on my mind as of late (ugh – swimsuit shopping is brutal!). It’s so odd to look back on your own photos in the past. Sometimes I want to say, “Hey! You! Stop being so hard on herself! You’re beautiful just the way you are!” I know, cliche and all, but we’re not always nice to ourselves. Hindsight…

    One thing that I can.not.do diet wise again is go super low carb. Just no. Because…cake.

    P.S. You’re gorgeous in all of your photos :)

    • August 22, 2013 Alison

      I did no to low carb for 3 weeks back in 2007 before I got married. It was torture. Never again!

  • August 22, 2013 Robbie

    Nope but I don’t have the time, energy or motivation to do much about it right now :(
    Robbie recently wrote…Re-EntryMy Profile

    • August 22, 2013 Alison

      Robbie, I hear ya.

  • August 22, 2013 Kimber

    I love your words and your thoughts! I have been blessed with a pretty decent body without a massive ton of effort. I think I make healthy eating choices generally speaking but I do indulge most days also. My say it how it is feeling is, I look pretty decent with no work, so why give up the time, effort, and energy to look a tad better? Are there things I would change, definitely! Is it worth the effort at this moment in time? Not to me! Bring on the muffins!
    Kimber recently wrote…{1-2-3 Magic DVD} Managing Difficult Behavior in ChildrenMy Profile

    • August 22, 2013 Alison

      It’s great that you’re in such a good place with yourself!

  • August 22, 2013 Adrienne

    Love that picture! I hear you in this one. I am not my ideal weight anymore either, but the beer and brownies I had yesterday were so good. I exercise, but not as often as I should. I’m not even sure it’s doing anything, but it’s cardio if nothing else. I’m motivated by health more than appearance. I don’t want be sitting in a nursing home like my grandma did. So I move. But it’s not exactly a body transforming eating/exercise plan. I just hope it keeps me healthy-ish.
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    • August 22, 2013 Alison

      You’ve got an awesome attitude, Adrienne!

  • August 22, 2013 Alexa (katbiggie)

    I love the picture and know what you mean. I look back at old pics of myself and think – dang, how could I have been so upset with THAT?? And like you, I like my good foods and wine entirely too much to give them up for the sake of trying to have flat abs. It’s all good!

    • August 22, 2013 Alison

      That’s a great attitude to have, enjoy life, right?

  • August 22, 2013 Brittany

    I’m not, but I know I did not choose to spend what free time I do have sweating my ass off. I keep meaning to wake up at 5:30 and get it done before the kids get home but I just don’t. And I can’t give up bagels. But I am trying to make some big changes before the holidays come, because while I think my pre baby body will not return, I think some of it has to do with getting older and metabolic changes that I need to address. xo you look fantastic then and now!
    Brittany recently wrote…Happy Trails: The Land of Waterfalls in Brevard, NCMy Profile

    • August 22, 2013 Alison

      Aw, thanks girl. I could look better, but I’m healthy and able, so I won’t be ungrateful for that.

  • August 22, 2013 Julia

    You know I was kicking myself this morning for not getting up to run and for eating the brownies at work yesterday and for just not being motivated enough to keep at it… and reading this made me feel so much better. I’m not willing to give up baking or chocolate.
    Julia recently wrote…The Good GoodMy Profile

    • August 22, 2013 Alison

      Life is short, we should do what makes us happy!

  • August 22, 2013 Crystal

    You’re gorgeous – then and now! I have to agree with you. I did NOT appreciate my pre-children body. Always found things wrong with it. You live and you learn, but there are some things you can never change. I’ve come to grips with the body I have now. I’ll never love it – if I said I did or would, I’d be lying. But I can live with it, because I know there are some things about it that I can never change. :)
    Crystal recently wrote…My Favorite Pins of the Week: Awesome Tips!My Profile

    • August 22, 2013 Alison

      I know what you mean, Crystal!

  • August 22, 2013 Clare

    I’ve struggled with my weight and body image most of my life. That’s what happens when your mom and older sister say things like, “You’d be so pretty if…” from the time you can remember. At 43, even though I still struggle to at least keep everything under control. I don’t obsess. Like you, I look back at old pictures and realize I did, at one time, have a pretty awesome figure that I didn’t appreciate. Now I work to appreciate the things I do have and I work to fix the things I don’t want to live with… like my grandmother’s arms. Great post.

    • August 22, 2013 Alison

      Love your comment so much, Clare, thank you!

  • August 22, 2013 Susi

    I think, for most of us women and probably more so, most of us moms – we can find something not right with our bodies. I’m very much like you in the regard that I love to bake, love the chocolate and the dairy… We try very hard to eat healthy and in moderation but I just can’t diet – at all. Also, I put on a few pounds over the past few years primarily after I stopped smoking – cold turkey – about 4 years ago. I haven’t touched a cigarette since and I feel 100 times better then I did when I was smoking so in a sense I am much healthier than I was then!!! Also, need to check out that yummy coconut muffin recipe.
    Susi recently wrote…All my duckies in a row {Wordless Wednesday}My Profile

    • August 22, 2013 Alison

      I can’t diet either. It makes me feel deprived and unhappy. And life is too short to feel deprived and unhappy.

  • August 22, 2013 Ashley

    NO! Not happy at all, but maybe if I threw an afro wig on I would be! I think I need that for Halloween. :) Seriously though, every time I’m pregnant I find myself looking back at old photos and think “ugh, I DID have a good body.” I dont know why I do that to myself ESPECIALLY when Im pregnant! I never imagined thinking I’d look back with these thoughts, but they happened. Kind of sad. I wish it motivated me more to stop eating so many dang cookies.
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    • August 22, 2013 Alison

      I love the ‘fro wig so much!
      You’re a beautiful woman, Ashley. Don’t beat yourself up.

  • August 22, 2013 Stacey

    Before I had my kids, I remember feeling like I was too skinny, and I wasn’t happy with the way I looked then. Now 12 years and two kids later, I realize I should have appreciated my skinny body while I had it!
    Stacey recently wrote…That Life Changing SmileMy Profile

    • August 22, 2013 Alison

      I know, I feel the same way!

  • August 23, 2013 Sandra

    You might like your body from 6 years ago more than yours now, but you KNOW you love your life at lesat 6 times more than the one from that picture, right? There is so much more in our heads and hearts now than “before”; we are so much richer and fulfilled. If it makes you feel better, I know I can’t find a picture from 6 years ago that I can envy. :)
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    • August 23, 2013 Alison

      Sandra, I couldn’t have said it better.

  • August 23, 2013 Jess

    I am the same way about wanting to get in shape but…chocolate. Chips. Speciality pops from the local mom & pop store.

    Sigh. One day!
    Jess recently wrote…Caution: Prone to TearsMy Profile

    • August 23, 2013 Alison

      Yes, one day, Jess!

  • August 23, 2013 Stevie

    Am I happy with it? Hmm. I’m not unhappy. I’m at peace with it. I look back at some pictures when I was working out like crazy but never feeling like I looked good. I see them and think, wow, I looked good! I know I need to take better care of myself. I need more cardio and to eat more fruits and vegetables. I’m forever trying to find my balance. Because I just can’t live without dairy or chocolate!
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    • August 23, 2013 Alison

      Everything in moderation, right?

  • August 23, 2013 AlwaysARedhead

    Some days yes, some days no. Either way, I’ve had 3 kids and I am not perfect, so overall I am happy.
    AlwaysARedhead recently wrote…Burnt Island Lake, Algonquin Provincial ParkMy Profile

    • August 23, 2013 Alison

      Happiness is the most important thing!

  • August 23, 2013 Christy

    So nice that you’re talking about body stuff in this way- a lot of people wouldn’t be so vulnerable. Lately, I’ve been wishing I had the body I had two years ago, when I was a lot more active and had a job that required a lot of physical activity/heavy lifting. Since I got married and started school, I’ve been mostly sedentary compared to then and I don’t like it- and of course I’m the one who can change that! It was me who got me in shape before, and me who can do it again (thank for providing the space for this pep talk :)!

    • August 23, 2013 Alison

      Christy, it makes me glad that this post motivated at least one person! :)

  • August 23, 2013 Nina

    As usual I am with you on EVERYTHING here. There are days when I feel so on top of my game (health-wise). And days when if I hear the expression “clean eating” I know I will SCREAM!!!
    Nina recently wrote…Writing Books I’ve LovedMy Profile

    • August 23, 2013 Alison

      I just can’t, with the clean eating. CANNOT.
      For the record, I think you look fab.

  • August 23, 2013 Kenya G. Johnson

    I’ll probably want to come back and kick my butt in five years not being happy with the way I am right now. I sure want to go back and do that with my younger self. Like why didn’t you wear a bikini when you had the chance. I think we are all like that. There is a picture of me when I feel like I look teeny tiny and I had just found out I was pregnant even at the time I had wished to lose a couple pounds.
    Kenya G. Johnson recently wrote…I’ll worry about that tomorrow…My Profile

    • August 23, 2013 Alison

      That’s the thing about hindsight. It makes us want to smack our younger selves. :)

  • August 24, 2013 Amanda Jillian

    Hell no but apparently I have high insulin levels for some reason and that can make losing weight harder, plus I have something going on with my digestive system ugh.
    Amanda Jillian recently wrote…Uh oh no more carbs …My Profile

  • August 24, 2013 JDaniel4's Mom

    I haven’t been exercising much lately. Boy, can I see a difference in how I look and feel. I need to put down the muffins and pick up the pace.
    JDaniel4′s Mom recently wrote…{Read.Explore.Learn.} Is Your Buffalo Ready for Kindergarten?My Profile

    • August 24, 2013 Alison

      Good luck!

  • August 24, 2013 My Inner Chick

    I Love love love that photo.

    It is quite “Alison Lee.” xx
    My Inner Chick recently wrote…Facebook, Looking For Love In All The Wrong PlacesMy Profile

    • August 24, 2013 Alison

      I wish I was more like the Alison in that photo these days. :) xo

  • August 24, 2013 Jeanne

    Not happy with my body at all. I look at recent pictures and think… I really need to do something. It’s not like I eat all the time, I just need to get motivated to get moving. :-/
    Jeanne recently wrote…Check Out These RacksMy Profile

    • August 25, 2013 Alison

      You and me both, Jeanne.

  • August 25, 2013 Katie

    I just looked at pictures of myself from over vacation this past week. I can pick about one million things I don’t like. The 10 pounds I packed on this summer is just the tip of the ice berg.
    Katie recently wrote…Rash KickersMy Profile

    • August 25, 2013 Alison

      I know this far too well. Commiserations, my friend.
      (for the record, I think you’re beautiful)

  • August 27, 2013 Shell

    I definitely didn’t appreciate my body back when I was younger. So I’m trying to now, even though it’s not what I want it to be… but I’ll probably look back years from now and wonder what my problem was.
    Shell recently wrote…Get Organized for the School Year: momAgenda GiveawayMy Profile

    • August 27, 2013 Alison

      Shell, you look terrific, for the record!

  • August 29, 2013 Mirjam

    Don’t get me started on my body. I’m not happy with it at all.
    But to be realistic, I wasn’t happy with my body when I had a great figure and a perfectly flat stomach either.
    So I try to focus on the things I do like, just in case I look at this body one day in envy.
    I for one think you look great, then and now and you really rock that afro wig!
    Mirjam recently wrote…Art of agingMy Profile

    • August 29, 2013 Alison

      I just really hope that one day, we can all be happy with what we have, here and now.
      And thank you!

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Alison Profile PictureI'm Alison. I am a writer, a mother of two boys (with boy/ girl twins on the way), and thrive on mayhem and chaos. A believer in the power of chocolate and hugs. Want to know more?

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