This conversation happened on a recent week day morning when the 3 of us were getting ready for school/work. I had just come out of the shower and Squirrel decided that this was the perfect time to share your observations of my body.
Squirrel: Mama Lynn has a big butt that jiggles a little bit.
Allison: I know. That’s why I like it?
Squirrel: But, why does it jiggle?
Allison: Because it makes her a good dancer. Do you know who else has a big butt that jiggles?
Allison: She is a powerful woman with a big butt and she is a great dancer.
Squirrel: Like Mama!
Squirrel: What about me Mama? Do I have a big butt?
Allison: You have the perfect size butt for you.
Allison: Honey, I just want to make sure that, when you talk about people’s bodies, like Mama’s butt, you are talking about it because you want to celebrate it. Not to make fun of it, right?
Squirrel looks at her wide-eyed, a bit confused.
Allison: It’s like how everyone is a different color and all colors are okay. It’s not okay to make fun of someone because of the color of their skin.
Squirrel (getting very serious): I NEVER make fun of people because of the color of their skin!
Allison: Oh, I know. It’s the same. Everybody has a different body type and all bodies are okay. So you should never make fun of someone for their body.
Squirrel: I won’t, Mommy!
As I listened in on this discussion of my rear end, I learned 3 things. 1) Body positivity and size acceptance can be taught in fun and casual ways. 2) My big, jiggly butt can be quite the effective teacher, and 3) Beyonce and I have even more in common than I thought.