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A girl made a comment about my body at the beach. This was my response.

Can you really judge how 'healthy a woman is by the thick, fleshy curve of her hip?

A girl made a comment about my body at the beach. This was my response.

Standing in the kitchen, my thick thighs rubbing together underneath my skirt, I am slowly working the premade pizza dough to stretch.

It came in a plastic bag, this dough, from one of those “cook at home” meal box programs — the kind you try because you have a coupon for a free week and then ultimately pay for a few more weeks because you forget to cancel the service (because it costs way too much).

The meals I have ordered from this service are touted as both “healthy” and “vegetarian,” which are not, in case you didn’t know, synonymous terms in the least. I know this because I am primarily the latter (a vegetarian) and aspire to be the former (health-conscious), but it’s a difficult reconciliation.


I want to be “healthy.” I try to be "healthy."

I don’t eat much meat, but I eat a lot of cheese and brussels sprouts. And spinach. I read ingredient labels; I put back the bread where the first word listed is "enriched."

I drink a green smoothie every morning. Whir, whir. Pulsing the blender with my fingers, adding the chia, the flax. I like the taste, the texture. The green. I imagine the antioxidants swerving through my veins, Go Go Gadget Vitamin E.

Of course, I also eat dessert. Everyone knows there’s not much meat in dessert. And I really like dessert.

If you’re into that sort of thing, perhaps you can judge how much I like dessert by the way my thighs rub together. You can judge how much I like brie by the soft wobble of my upper arm, the part that keeps on waving long after my hand has signaled hello. You can judge every part of me that you see, if that’s the kind of thing you like to do.

If that’s the kind of thing you like to do, I won’t judge.

But what about the spinach? And the smoothie? Do you see my love for flaxseed in the strong sloping hardness of my back? Are you looking at the whites of my eyes and the thickness of my hair, a braid down my back, a silver-dollar-sized hunk? Can you see my sturdy bones? The pinkish hardened healthy half-moons of my nails?

It’s not about the way you look. I’m concerned for your health.

But really, can you judge how healthy a woman is by the thick, fleshy curve of her hip?

Does being a size 12, 14, 16 alone really mean my days are numbered? Is this the only answer that matters? Those who want to judge are much more apt to assess my healthfulness based on the number inside of my bathing suit versus the number on the paperwork from my doctor’s lab — they believe the measure of a healthy woman is the measure of her thighs. Forget science. Forgo numbers. Screw you, doctor. It’s modern beauty we should worry about. This tells me all I need to know about this woman.

If you are into that sort of thing, if you are the type to make a judgment based only on what you see, then you are not really my type at all.

It’s your health I worry about. It’s not about the way you look. Oh, but it is. It’s about the way YOU look at ME.

In a dress, as I sing karaoke. In soft pants, as I order some spaghetti. In my bathing suit, my beautiful bathing suit, at the ocean.

When you look, what you don’t see:

I’m strong. I can teach an 8-year-old girl to ride a two-wheeler in one Saturday afternoon and carry six bags of groceries in one trip from the car.

My brain is fueled by flaxseeds and sometimes chocolate croissants — it writes essays about love and sex and skin and kindness and dresses and teenagers and addiction and death and gratitude.

Sometimes my thighs rub together while I knead pizza dough.

Sometimes I am the only one in the house strong enough to open a jar of dill pickles.

Once I carried a bed up two flights of stairs, all by myself.

You can’t find those things, these intangible things, in the thick knot of flesh above my knees.

So they do not matter.

Here is what matters:

A girl at the beach whispered, “I like that fat girl’s bathing suit!” when I walked by.

I swam way out to where the waves drowned that girl’s voice.

Then I swam back in again.

I am the fat girl in the green bathing suit. It’s emerald, really, against the porcelain slope of my flesh. Green like a mermaid’s fin. All this flesh, my glorious oyster.

“They only make this suit for fat girls,” I said quietly to that girl, as I sifted my way back to my place in the sand. And her face turned red, but I smiled kindly at her anyway. Maybe she didn’t know I could hear her. Maybe she hadn’t meant it with disdain.

I smiled at that girl.

Sometimes the careful measure of my words, the beautiful measure of my style, the growing measure of my strength and my character is far greater than the size of my hips.

If only someone were interested in judging that.

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A lot of people here are like family to me," Michelle says about Bread for the City — a community nonprofit located in Washington DC that provides local residents with food, clothing, health care, social advocacy, and legal services. And since the pandemic began, the need to support organizations like Bread for the City is greater than ever, which is why Amazon is Delivering Smiles to local charities across the country this holiday season.

Watch the full story:

Amazon is giving back by fulfilling hundreds of AmazonSmile Charity Lists, and donating essential pantry and food items to help organizations like Bread for the City provide to those disproportionately impacted this year.

Visit AmazonSmile Charity Lists to donate directly to a local charity in your community, or simply shop smile.amazon.com and Amazon will donate a portion of the purchase price of eligible products to your charity of choice.

Acts of kindness and compassion are always inspiring. A veterinarian gave a different spin on the phrase "if you can't beat 'em, join 'em".

The poor little pup in this video walked into this shelter with a history of being abused. He was so traumatized that he wasn't eating. The vet treating him wasn't sure what to do, so he decided to book a table for two: a the dog's place. It is not clear whether he got an official invite from the canine in question, but he felt pretty safe about showing up unannounced. He walked into the cage and sat down next to the dog. With his back up against the corner of his new (and hopefully temporary) domain, the rescue stared apprehensively at his human guest. The vet presented a dog dish with food and put it in front of the dog. The frightened pup just looked at the dish and made no attempt to eat. Then he broke out another dog dish identical to the one he just gave to his four-legged patient and started eating out of that bowl. And then came the turning point.


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True

A lot of people here are like family to me," Michelle says about Bread for the City — a community nonprofit located in Washington DC that provides local residents with food, clothing, health care, social advocacy, and legal services. And since the pandemic began, the need to support organizations like Bread for the City is greater than ever, which is why Amazon is Delivering Smiles to local charities across the country this holiday season.

Watch the full story:

Amazon is giving back by fulfilling hundreds of AmazonSmile Charity Lists, and donating essential pantry and food items to help organizations like Bread for the City provide to those disproportionately impacted this year.

Visit AmazonSmile Charity Lists to donate directly to a local charity in your community, or simply shop smile.amazon.com and Amazon will donate a portion of the purchase price of eligible products to your charity of choice.
Anne Owens and Luke Redito / Wikimedia Commons
True

When Madeline Swegle was a little girl growing up in Burke, VA, she loved watching the Blue Angels zip through the sky. Her family went to see the display every time it was in town, and it was her parents' encouragement to pursue her dreams that led her to the U.S. Naval Academy in 2017.

Before beginning the intense three-year training required to become a tactical air (TACAIR) pilot, Swegle had never been in an aircraft before; piloting was simply something she was interested in. It turns out she's got a gift for it—and not only is she skilled, she finds the "exhilaration to be unmatched."

"I'm excited to have this opportunity to work harder and fly high performance jet aircraft in the fleet," Swegle said in a statement released by the Navy. "It would've been nice to see someone who looked like me in this role; I never intended to be the first. I hope it's encouraging to other people."

As Swegle's story shows, representation and equality matter. And the responsibility to advance equality for all people - especially Black Americans facing racism - falls on individuals, organizations, businesses, and governmental leadership. This clear need for equality is why P&G established the Take On Race Fund to fight for justice, advance economic opportunity, enable greater access to education and health care, and make our communities more equitable. The funds raised go directly into organizations like NAACP Legal Defense and Education Fund, YWCA Stand Against Racism and the United Negro College Fund, helping to level the playing field.

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Do you know that guy who has never had an issue with his TV/internet provider? Neither do I. If you claim you have never had issues with your bill going up without warning, then you are either lying or you own the cable company. Jake Lawson apparently does not own a cable company, and was prepared to communicate his frustrations regarding his bill in a most creative way.

First off, Jake understands what everyone should realize. The customer service representative doesn't own the cable company either, so yelling at someone who is just trying to make a living like all of us is not the answer. Their job is hard enough as it is so give them a break. Jake gave them more than a break. He gave them a song.


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