Jo Molyneux

"My daughter is anorexic. My beautiful baby girl is starving herself to skin and bone.

I take off my clothes and look at myself in the mirror. I am a short, fat, 54 year old woman with cellulite on my thighs and bottom and with a floppy belly. I wonder “Is it my fault that my daughter will not eat. Perhaps she looks at me and thinks I am disgusting?” I certainly do not look like any model in a magazine. How can I explain to her that it does not matter? That I am a real woman with curves and shape that are unique to me.

When I was young, and slim and beautiful, I used to panic if I put on two pounds. I thought that nobody would love me if I wasn’t perfect. I fell in love with a boy who loved me back. We went walking one day; my skirt caught on a twig and my thigh was accidentally exposed to his eyes. I was so ashamed that I could not look at him or even speak. I knew that he would not like me any more now he had seen how ugly I was.

I was wrong. A few months later, when we were closer, he told me that it was the most erotic thing that he had ever seen.

That boy loved me in every way and helped me to love myself. I grew up with him. I learned to accept that no bodies are perfect in the way that magazines like to portray them. Perfect bodies are healthy and come in liquorice allsorts shapes and sizes.

Some years after we had drifted apart I travelled with my backpack through strange lands filled with new experiences. Here I learned that age was not a barrier to beauty either. I met the wisest, the kindest and the gentlest of people and I loved them more than any false beauties from my world. The most beautiful woman I ever met was 83 and only had two teeth.

“Hello gorgeous girl” shouts my 56 year old husband. He comes homes from work and pours us a drink. You look great he says as he embraces me from behind, I feel him growing hard as he presses into the voluptuous roundness of my bottom, “You are the sexiest girl alive” he whispers as he slides his hand under my t shirt. He means it.

Two middle aged people frolic on the sofa, giggling like children as they peel off each others clothes. “I love you” they cry as they devour each other. And they do. They love every little part of each other. He kisses her cellulite, she strokes his beer belly. Their hot, sweaty bodies take them to a place of ecstasy that no 24 year old version of themselves could ever do. Confident and happy because they have learned not to compare themselves to air brushed images and fakes, they have found true beauty in each other.

Please God, I can now teach this to my daughter."

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