When I was in high school, I was very tall and fairly thin. Strangers often asked me one of two questions: 1) Did I play basketball? or 2) Was I a model? One woman at a supermarket even asked me if I was a Swedish model. I don’t know what made her think this brown-eyed brown-haired girl was Swedish, but I was flattered nonetheless. I never did play basketball, but I did play one year of high school softball. I never aspired to be a model, though I was once invited to walk in a fashion show for evening wear, which I accepted. I modeled three or four different dresses, and I enjoyed the experience.
As a young woman, I remember looking through Victoria’s Secret catalogs and wishing that I looked like the supermodels on the pages within. Most women want to feel sexy and desirable. (There’s a sermon here about vanity, but don’t worry, I’m not going to preach tonight.) Thankfully the good Lord blessed me with a husband who has said I am sexy through all my different sizes and shapes, and would find me desirable in a potato sack. But as I’ve gotten older, my idea of “sexy” has changed and matured.
I used to get excited about a new Victoria’s Secret catalog, but now…not so much. Now I look forward to receiving my Athleta catalog. (In case you’re not familiar with the brand, Athleta is Gap Inc’s line of athletic clothing.) I look at the women – mostly my age – in the pages of an Athleta catalog, and I know I would choose to look like one of those models over a Victoria’s Secret model any day. Some of the VS models look fit and toned, but most of them look thin and frail. Athleta models look active and strong.
And that’s what I want to be…strong. I want to be strong so I can play with my kids now and with my grandkids later in life. I want to have the energy to make it through my crazy-hectic schedule each day. I want to remain active as I get older.
If nothing else, this “trick hip” I’ve developed (it pops in and out of place) has reminded me that I’m getting old. I will be 40 in three and a half short years! My body and my overall health are starting to require more maintenance. The skinny body of my youth is long gone, and I’m perfectly okay with that. It wasn’t a particularly healthy body. I ate a Taco Bell bean burrito, a Snickers, and a Coke several times a week for lunch. Not exactly the diet of champions.
This goal of trying to get back in my wedding dress is not some attempt to reclaim my glory days, because I think my glory days are still ahead of me! I want my body to be a tool for God’s service, and that motivates me to get in shape more than getting in my wedding dress. He’s not done with me yet, and as long as He chooses to leave me on this earth, I want to be ready for whatever adventure He assigns me. What better way to ready for action than with a strong and able body?
That’s way better than sexy in my book. :)