As a person who has been fat nearly all my life, I have a hard time understanding how a society that generally frowns upon obesity actually celebrates it in one of its most beloved and revered iconic characters.
Yes, I’m talking about none other than jolly old St. Nicholas, aka, Santa.
You see, when my belly shakes when I laugh like a bowlful of jelly, nobody writes long classic holiday poems about it. Instead, they hand me paperwork about diabetes and high blood pressure, and encourage me to diet and exercise.
Mrs. Claus is no help, I’m sure. She probably makes sweet treats all year long like peanut butter fudge and soft peppermint sticks or sugar cookies and warm gingerbread.
Of course, maybe if I visited every home in the world over the course of one exhausting night to fill stockings hung by the chimney with care while children lay nestled all snug in their beds, then people would view me differently too. Maybe then my fat would not only be celebrated in classic literature, but also encouraged by the same masses leaving cookies and eggnog by the Christmas tree for dear Santa Claus. After all, he must burn a whole lot of calories delivering all of those holiday goodies worldwide.
I wonder, when was the last time he visited the doctor for an echocardiogram?
Who wants a skinny Santa, anyway? There’s something about the man, every chubby and plump pound of him, which endears him to young children all over the planet as a pleasant, generous, trustworthy and comforting soul. Why else would everyone write to him with their hopes and deepest desires at Christmas?
It’s been a while since I last wrote to Santa. Back in the day, my letters were homages to youthful whims. I wanted the Barbie Dream Castle, or the latest New Kids on the Block album. As an adult, I want different things – like a calorie-free Christmas dinner that still tastes every bit as good as the real one, or an exercise that I can do by pushing a button while sitting on the couch.
I refuse to feel jealous of Santa and the fact that he can indulge without guilt, or the fact that he can somehow still fit down the tiny chimney flues even after eating a million cookies in one night.
Instead, I’m going to believe in the magic of Christmas and write a letter to Santa just like I used to when I was a kid – almost.
I’ve tried to be a good girl this year.
I’ve counted most of my calories (and it’s really hard to count that high). I’ve weighed and portioned some of my foods. I’ve chosen a few healthier snacks and I’ve taken care not to eat late too many nights in a row.
I’ve exercised. Well, once in a while at least.
Anyway, the point is, I’ve tried. Could I have tried harder? Well, sure, but do we really need to talk about that right now?
What I want for Christmas is peace and comfort and joy for everyone, which I’m fairly certain can be achieved with the help of a really good Belgian waffle maker.
By the way, you really rock the red suit.