The Category of Appearance

My husband and I were talking about how men and women differ. He said, in the category of appearance, women judge each other and men don’t. He’s seen one woman give another woman a once-over glance when she walked into the room. Then she gave a look that said she was satisfied she’d won that beauty contest. In his opinion, women wear makeup and get cosmetic surgery not for men, not for themselves, but in competition with other women.

Then he explained that men don’t act that way with each other. They’ll compete in sports or even gadget ownership, but not in looks. Men will stand around, with their bellies hanging over their belts, discussing the topic of the moment. When a beautiful woman walks by, she may or may not notice the smiling men with their bellies tightly sucked in. For some guys, that’s about the extent of work they’re willing to do to improve their appearance -- for anyone.

Now don’t get me wrong. My husband’s not a slob. His appearance has kept my attention for well over twenty years. Charming as he may be, he’s also very smart. He's decided to change a few things about his normal eating routine. And of course, I’ll join him.

I think that’s what a lot of people do at the beginning of every year. We take a glance back at our last twelve months and find that we need a new normal.

For me a new normal means work. I have the nutritional knowledge and exercise DVDs that it’s going to take to turn my comfortable world upside down. And I’m going to do it.

It won’t be for men, and it won’t be in competition with other women. I’ll do it for my health. I want to be around to play with my grandchildren, if I get to have any. I want to be healthy enough to enjoy my 50th wedding anniversary, if I have one. I want the freedom to go to the beach or the pool without being embarrassed because I don’t like how I look.

I’m doing this for me.

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