Baby Bagel Bumpdate: Weeks 14-17

…And yet again, I’m late with my updates! Sorry guys. I’ll just get right into it.


I’m 18 weeks and 1 day along. Baby is the size of a green pepper/sweet potato/pear.


Since I last posted, my symptoms are fairly few and far between. The biggest things that I’ve noticed are appetite increase, especially in the last week or so, the bump is starting to make a noticeable appearance, and I do find myself having more energy throughout the day. Most of the time, I don’t even feel pregnant, which is a bit disconcerting. During week 16, I had the WORST cold — as in, I couldn’t leave my bed or the house for 3 days straight. It was the full gamut: nasal congestion, runny nose, extreme fatigue, you name it. Not being able to take anything for it was the worst; cold symptoms tend to be exaggerated and last longer during pregnancy due to the compromised immune system. I hadn’t gotten my flu shot, but I promptly did that this past Monday since flu season can last through May. I’m totally paranoid and definitely do not want to take any chances! It takes two weeks for immunity to kick in so I’m just hoping and waiting until it does so.

Weight Gained

I have no idea. At my last checkup a few weeks ago, I was apparently at 118 pounds (starting weight was 109 and I’m 5 feet tall for reference), but that was with clothes and shoes on. 

Food Cravings

I don’t have any cravings per se, but I’m happy that I can now eat pretty much most food again without feeling too nauseated (except for grilled chicken — that aversion apparently isn’t going away). I still prefer carby foods and fruit to vegetables, so I’ve been attempting to drink green smoothies most days. I’m also a HUGE fan of snacking on frozen mango pieces.


I’m not going to lie: I’ve been pretty inconsistent with my workouts and I don’t see that changing really. All I’ve been doing is walking, but I’m honestly okay with that. 


Around week 13, we were eligible to get the Panorama cell-free fetal DNA test due to a slightly thickened NT fold on our scan, which when combined with a first trimester blood test, can indicate a slightly higher risk for Down’s syndrome. We received the results from a single blood draw that showed our baby screened for a low risk of Down’s and other trisomies (about 1 in 10,000)…and we were also able to find out the gender early! Yesterday, we also had our full fetal survey/anatomy scan, which confirmed the gender.

It’s a…..BABY GIRL!! I was thrilled when I found out, although honestly I would have been over the moon either way. We already have the name picked out but are keeping it a secret until her birth in July.


I’m still fairly anxious, but I think that’s common for most pregnant mamas. I’m trying my best to enjoy each week but I’ve definitely found myself wishing it was July already. Time seems to be passing by so slowly! 

Other Updates:

I’m (extremely impatiently) waiting to feel any kind of fetal movement, and so far, I don’t think there’s been any. I may have felt some tiny flutters over the past few days, but I honestly think it was probably just my stomach gurgling. Yesterday the ultrasound tech did confirm that I have a posterior placenta, which means that it’s located in the back so I should be able to still feel movement. I’m part of a few pregnant mama groups on Facebook and elsewhere, and a lot of first time moms have started to report movement as early as 16 weeks. I’m really hoping this week is the start of it — I can’t wait to feel her kicks and flips!

Luckily, things are going to be pretty distracting in the next few weeks because Michael and I just closed on our first home and have a lot to do to get settled in (so many changes!!).  I feel like I’m supposedly a full fledged adult with all these decisions, but in reality I don’t feel that way at all. Have you any of you had that experience?!

The Bump

I’ve been posting my weekly baby bump progress on Instagram, so definitely follow me there if you haven’t already if you’re interested in that! I recently changed my IG name to something a bit more personal, but don’t worry – it’s still me! Here’s a few shots from the past few weeks. Sorry for the fuzziness of the images; I couldn’t find an easier way to access them in better quality.

I’ll be back in a few weeks with another update!

14 Weeks


15 Weeks


16 Weeks


17 Weeks



Baby Bagel Bumpdate #1: The First Trimester

First of all, thank you all so, so much for your comments on our recent announcement! They all mean so much to us. Michael and I are so excited to become parents — if a little anxious at the same time.

I wanted to discuss a few things before diving into today’s post. If I’m being honest, I’m not sure the direction I plan to take this blog. I’ve really enjoyed these past two years and don’t really have an intention of quitting, but due to the pregnancy being a huge part of my life right now, I feel I need and want to incorporate it into the content. I don’t have the intention of turning it into a “mommy blog”, but I want to inform you all that going forward, most of my content will be relatively pregnancy-heavy. Don’t worry – I still am passionate about body image and body freedom – and TRUST ME, I’ve been going through some very relevant challenges that I plan on discussing! – but be warned that for the most part, it’s going to be mainly pregnancy updates for a while. I also have decided to not follow any particular blog schedule, which is REALLY difficult for me because if you’ve been reading the blog for a while, you’ll know that I stuck pretty dang diligently to a Monday/Wednesday/Friday posting schedule for many months. It’s how much of my content was able to be shared and introduced, and I know it’s a big risk going against that. However, there are more important things going on right now, and I need to honor them. That being said, I still definitely plan on doing at least a post every few weeks — and I’m always available via email or social media if you want to get in touch. I’d love to hear from you, as always! 

Thanks for staying with me through that!

Today, I wanted to do a recap of my first trimester. I’m (tentatively) planning on doing recaps for three weeks’ worth, but since the first trimester had so much, I decided it made more sense to condense it. My next update will be recapping weeks 13-15, followed by 16-18, and so on. For reference, I’m currently 14 weeks pregnant; Baby Bagel has an estimated due date of July 21. 

I’m warning you ahead of time: this is long.

How It Began

I’ll start by saying that Michael and I decided to start trying to conceive (TTC) in October. As some of you may recall, I had recently lost my longstanding administrative support position at the beginning of that month, but had been hired at a small digital marketing agency starting the following week. With that in place, we decided to put things in the Lord’s hands. An important factor in all of this is that I had been tracking my cycles since January 2014. One of the posts that has driven the most traffic to this blog was my review on the hormonal free birth control and fertility tracking device, the Lady Comp, from several years ago (you can check that out here if you’re interested!). I stopped taking birth control on New Year’s Day of 2014 due to, amongst other things, wonky side effects from being on the pill – maybe a story for another time. In what was then an effort to prevent pregnancy, I checked my temperature every morning for almost two years, right when I woke up and before I got out of bed. I also read a LOT of literature on the Fertility Awareness Method (it’s NOT the rhythm method!!), specifically from this book. We were very conservative with LC’s recommendations to either abstain/use protection or have more, ahem, freedom. We successfully went the entire time without virtually any scares – except for a brief time this past spring when my period was just late, probably due to stress. It was wonderful to feel more in control of my body and know what was going on. That being said, I was fairly certain of my fertile window, so when we “baby danced”, I was pretty confident that our chances of getting pregnant were pretty high (although it’s typically only 20% per each cycle).

Interesting note: my period was due on Wednesday, November 11, and it didn’t show up. I took two pregnancy tests (the kind with the blue dye – DO NOT use these!!), one on November 9th (two days before my expected period) and on the 11th. They were both negative, so I obviously thought I wasn’t pregnant. I lost my job on Monday the 9th, and got a positive pregnancy test on that following Sunday, November 15th. I’m really glad it wasn’t the other way around — it was hard enough, but I’m certain I would’ve reacted even more strongly if that was the case! 

So that Sunday morning, I used a pregnancy test from Fairhaven Health (review coming soon) and it was positive. And like probably everyone else, I promptly took another one just to “confirm”. It was also positive. I immediately ran to tell Michael, who was half delirious with a bad cold, but we were both excited…and a little in shock. It’s been like that since, honestly!PostiveHPT

Physical Symptoms

For the first few weeks, I had absolutely no symptoms. I was freaking out. Right around Thanksgiving, when we told our immediate families, I started to get some nausea in the evenings, and the aversions kicked in with a vengeance. The major culprits? Meat and vegetables. I think I went literally weeks without eating a green veggie, and to this day chicken breast completely disgusts me (unless it’s breaded and/or fried, naturally). I only got sick once in the first trimester, and that was because I ate too much cereal and felt so full. It was bizarre. Other than that, I didn’t experience too much exhaustion, but I did find myself napping most days – which was definitely out of the ordinary as I’m not usually a napper. I also didn’t work out for most of the first trimester, and nowadays it’s strictly walking and short pregnancy-safe workouts. 


I’m not going to sugarcoat it: the first trimester was really, really difficult emotionally. I had so many anxieties and fears about things that could happen, and to be honest I don’t think those worries will completely abate until the baby is safely in my arms in July. It was especially tough in the very beginning because we were keeping it between ourselves (save for our family and a few close friends) so it was pretty lonely. The loneliness, coupled with my being unemployed, led to a lot of crying fits and MAJOR mood swings. I’ll say that it was also troubling at times due to my deciding to go off my medication (I took 25mg of Zoloft/day for my anxiety previously). I honestly think that the combination of the added hormones plus the extra stressors led to a blowup waiting to happen…which it did, triggered by an event that I could have avoided but of course didn’t. Michael was so supportive during the process and I think the poor guy was just mainly confused. So was I! The holidays were a nice distraction from it all, which I’m definitely thankful for.



Due Date, Gender, and Other Fun Things

Due Date: July 21. I had originally estimated the due date to be around July 20th based on my last period, but after our first ultrasound at around 7 weeks, my estimated due date was pushed back by 1 day. We’ll see!

Ultrasounds: We’ve actually had 2 1/2 — our first, to confirm a heartbeart (waiting for that one is the WORST),  a follow up during 9 weeks in my doctor’s office, and our Nuchal Translucency scan at 12 weeks. This last one was so incredible; to see the baby’s profile (Baby Bagel totally has their dad’s nose!). We even got an image of Baby’s precious hand as if they were waving to us. It was pretty special.

Baby Bump: I think I’m definitely starting to sport a little belly, but it’s still pretty subtle. I’m quite looking forward to when it becomes more pronounced! I’m posting weekly bump shots on my Instagram if you’re so inclined to follow along (if you’re not already!). I haven’t decided on posting them here but I’m learning towards not.

Gender: So when we had our NT scan (which assesses risk for Down’s syndrome and other chromosomal abnormalities), my risk came back a little higher than is “normal” for my age. As a result, I qualified to get the Panorama cell-free DNA prenatal test, which is a simple blood draw that can – with 99% accuracy – give a more detailed risk assessment due to the fact that it’s pulling from some of the fetal DNA that’s found in maternal blood. This also meant that we could find out the gender a full almost two months sooner than we would have otherwise. Michael and I wanted to find out what the baby’s gender is anyway. We were so excited to get the results back that indicated a very, very low risk for chromosomal abnormalities (nothing’s guaranteed, of course) and we learned Baby Bagel’s gender at that time as well. We’ll be keeping that to ourselves for the time being now, though!

That’s about it for now. If you’ve read all of this from the beginning, bless you, because it was a doozy! Thanks for understanding about my change of posting schedule and I hope these types of posts are somewhat interesting to at least some people. At the very least, I’ll have them for my own records, too.

Have a blessed rest of your week!



The Real Reason I Haven’t Been Blogging…

I know I haven’t been blogging as actively. It stinks. I’ve literally posted nothing since the beginning of 2016, and I’m so sorry. The thing is, there’s a reason — and right now, it’s roughly the size of a plum ;).




Michael and I are expecting our first child in July! We are so thrilled and excited, but it’s also been a nerve wracking first trimester. I’m currently just about to start my second trimester and am still nervous. Let’s be honest, I think that will be the case for the rest of my life!

Thanks so much for understanding and hopefully this explains my MIA blog at least a little bit more!

Merry Christmas!

Dear friends,

Just stopping in to wish you and your family and loved ones a very Merry Christmas, Happy Holidays, and a very blessed and Happy New Year! I am so thankful for you and your support this past year, and I’m excited to see what the next year brings, both for this blog and beyond. I’ll see you in 2016!

2015 Christmas Survey

Hey friends! Since it’s just a week before Christmas (WHAT?!) and it’s my favorite holiday, I thought I’d do a fun little themed survey. I’d love to hear your answers, so please feel free to comment with your answers to any (or all!) of the questions.


Eggnog or hot chocolate?

I’m a fan of both, but generally, I’m a hot chocolate person.

Do you get presents from Santa?

Growing up, there was always some gifts from Santa — even up until a few years ago. Since Michael and I have gotten married, we’ve only done that for the stocking stuffers. I’m excited to incorporate the tradition once kids are in the picture!

Multi-color tree lights or white?

As a kid, my mom and I always had multi-colored lights on our tree. I actually think it doesn’t look that great so our tree has white lights with festive ornaments to balance it out.


Do you hang mistletoe?

No. I always seem to forget about mistletoe.

When do you decorate for Christmas?

Based on our current holiday travel plans, it’s almost always the Sunday after Thanksgiving. 

What is your favorite holiday dish?

Do cinnamon buns on Christmas morning count?  😉 

Favorite holiday memory?

Some of my fondest memories include times when my mom and I would go to my aunt and uncle’s house. A few times, we all packed up and stayed at a ski resort over Christmas, and to a kid, the combination of the snow covered village and the festivities was simply magical.

What’s on your Christmas wish list?

Honestly, not much. I do need a new pair of sneakers but that’s hardly exciting.

Do you open gifts on Christmas Eve?

Yes, but just one each.

How do you decorate your tree?

With white lights, and lots of red and gold. In my opinion, the tree offers enough green that there’s no need for extra green ornaments!

Snow: Love it or Hate It?

Love it! (Yes, even after last winter…)


Real tree or fake?


What is your favorite holiday tradition?

I have many, but in recent years, I’ve really enjoyed cutting down the Christmas tree with Michael and my in-laws. 

What is your favorite Christmas carol?

I really love O Holy Night.

Favorite Christmas Movie?

Another hard one! I can’t think of a top favorite, but the ones I have to watch each year include (in no particular order): Love Actually, The Santa Clause, Miracle on 34th Street (the 1994 version!) and National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation. My mom and I can quote Christmas vacation from start to finish!

Christmas morning tradition?

The excitement and anticipation of it all is the best. I think perhaps the cinnamon buns also are a big favorite of mine – and hence why I’m not surprised they ended up in this survey twice!

Do you write Christmas cards?

No. It’s something that I always intend on doing (my mother is the master of the Hilarious but Well Stated Christmas Card) but quite honestly, time usually gets lost on me and before I know it, it’s too late. I also need to be better about collecting everyone’s addresses in advance. I really want to get into the habit of doing this one of these years!



So Sorry for Being MIA!


I’m so sorry for not posting in FOREVER – easily the longest I’ve gone without updating the blog! I promise I’ll have some more posts coming up, with a few good ones lined up in particular.

It’s been a crazy month. In addition to the busyness of the holiday season (I hope you all had safe and enjoyable Thanksgivings!), remember that new job I got the beginning of October? Well, on November 9, just over a month after I started, I was let go. It was completely out of the blue but as it was a contract position, I guess I shouldn’t have been so surprised. However, the stress of getting back into the job search with the added concern of having no income on my part has made for quite an interesting few weeks. I’ve been able to get unemployment benefits, though, for which I’m so grateful. It’s definitely better than nothing.

As for the blog, I absolutely still plan on getting back into more regular posting; maybe starting with some silly surveys just to get back into the groove of things. It’s honestly been tough to get up the motivation, so I’m hoping that will change. While I’m still passionate about body positivity/food freedom issues, I’ve quite honestly found myself in a bit of a rut with thinking up fresh content ideas. I’ll also admit that I found myself frustrated with the lack of the blog’s growth, even though that certainly wasn’t my purpose in starting it nor even close to a heavily motivating factor in my decision to continue writing. I still love blogging and especially connecting with all of you!

I’ll definitely be continuing to post but probably not as frequently as the 3x/a week schedule I adhered to for so long. I’d rather have good content for you less frequently than mediocre posts with regularity. In the meantime, you can follow me on Instagram where I’m a little more active, and I’ve recently been posting more on Snapchat (@bagelsbroccoli). I’m also of course always excited to hear from you via email as well. Either way, check back here again soon!

The Benefits of CBT

Thank you all so much for your kind and supportive words on my last post on not feeling ‘enough’. I appreciate each and every one, and while I’m admittedly glad to know I’m not alone, I also don’t want that to be the case because I know how difficult it is. Regardless, I’m still so thankful and grateful for all of you.

Today, I wanted to talk about something that I’ve touched on briefly before but that has been a tremendous help to me over the past year or so: cognitive behavioral therapy. I had never heard of it before I learned about it at an intensive therapy program I participated in during the summer of 2014. Cognitive behavioral therapy, or CBT, is a specific type of therapy designed for those struggling with anxiety, depression, and a variety of issues along the spectrum of mental health. What purpose, then, does it serve? What are the benefits of  practicing CBT?

[Tweet “The Benefits of CBT #CBT #mentalhealth #happiness”]


Essentially, CBT refers to therapy that focuses on rearranging, or restructuring, what are often deemed “negative automatic thoughts”. These thoughts are the ones so many of us may be used to telling ourselves throughout the day:

“My boss asked to see me in his office. What if I get fired? I have too many bills to pay!”

“I’ll never get into a good grad school program. I’m not smart enough”.

“I just made a fool out of myself in front of my classmates. They must think I’m so awkward! What’s wrong with me?”

Typically, how do you usually feel after these thoughts? Maybe a bit insecure? Self conscious? Downright sad? That’s completely understandable, and something most of us have probably experienced at one time or another.

The basis of CBT starts with this: our thoughts influence our emotions, which in turn precede our actions. If we think that no one likes us, for example, we’re more likely to get depressed or anxious, which in turn can lead us to turn to alcohol or some other form of numbing to distract us from our pain. I absolutely fall into this category! When I was first introduced to CBT, I was fascinated by the idea that my emotions could be directly affected and/or linked to my thoughts. And it makes sense! Practicing CBT has made me more aware of my emotions and how/why I might be feeling them. I try to pinpoint the thought behind each panicked emotion and I’ve found it has helped quite a bit.

Related to this, there are several criteria, or “cognitive distortion” categories that most negative automatic thoughts fall into. Here are the main ones, using not getting into one’s college as an example:

  • “All or nothing” thinking, e.g: If I don’t get into this college, I won’t get in anywhere.
  • Overgeneralization: I know I won’t get into this college because I didn’t get into the other one I applied to.
  • Negative Filtering/Discounting the Positive: Yes, I got into that college, but it doesn’t count because it’s not the one I really want.
  • Jumping to Conclusions: Everyone else has received their acceptance letters except me. I clearly wasn’t accepted.
  • Catastrophizing: If I don’t get into college, I’ll never live it down.
  • Emotional Reasoning: I feel so stupid! I’ll never get into college.
  • Mind Reading: My advisor laughed at me today because she knows I’ll never get in.
  • Fortune Telling: I just know I’ll never get in. It’s not worth even being excited about it. 
  • Labeling and Judging: She clearly got in because her rich dad made a call. It’s so unfair. 
  • Personalization/Blame: This just proves that I’ll never do anything right. 
  • Extreme words like never, always etc: I’ll never be successful at anything because of this. I’m such a failure.

I don’t know about you, but I relate to a lot of these examples. In fact, I’m about 99% sure that my thoughts have aligned with all of these at one time or another. The ability to take time, after a particularly triggering event, to go through and see where some of my emotions stem from one (and often multiple) of these thought patterns has been extremely valuable. Even better, there are several (free!) worksheets you can find online that you can download and fill out, especially when you’re just starting out, like this one.  For people who prefer the technological side of things, I’ve downloaded an app that I personally recommend. It’s called Pacifica, and it does cost money for the premium version, but it’s worth it because not only does it give you the option to do a “though record” straight on your phone, there’s also relaxation features and mood checkins as well. It’s pretty cool! 

One of the biggest benefits to CBT is that it can be practiced without costing you a single cent! Although I’m a big proponent of traditional therapy methods and currently see a therapist on a regular basis, I love that I can implement CBT practices every day on my own. I’ve noticed a big difference in my overall perspective through utilizing CBT, and that is in itself is worth it! Like anything, though, it’s not a magic pill, and in order to be successful it does require consistent practice. In addition, it’s supposed to be used in tandem with DBT – dialectical behavioral therapy – which I’m more than happy to write a post about if anyone’s interested (although I have less practice with that method than CBT!)

  • Would you practice CBT?
  • Have you ever found yourself using something to “self-medicate” the pain of anxiety or depression?




Not Enough

I’m not enough.

Lately, I’ve been feeling, thinking, believing those three words.

[Tweet “Do you ever struggle with feeling like you’re never enough? Me too…”]


I don’t blog “enough”. I don’t exercise “enough”. I don’t eat “enough” healthy foods.  I’m not a good “enough” friend, wife, daughter, or employee.

It’s difficult to go through life with my head held high (whatever that means) when I could spend most of it hoping no one will find out that I’m just faking it until I make it. Without the promise of actually making it.

Exhibit A: social situations. I’m an extrovert with strong introverted tendencies, so 9 out of 10 times I prefer being around people than keeping myself company. However, the ever pervasive voice of being “not enough” can often be too much to handle when I’m around people I’m hoping to connect with. I get overwhelmed easily by my insecurities and inadequacies. I envy my fellow party-goers who can banter back and forth with ease and establish the beginnings of lifelong friendships while I longingly observe from afar.

This past week, I’ve found myself in a situation where two of my coworkers are bonding, and I’m left to play the third-wheel-awkward-office-mate role. It sounds silly, but when I walk into the office where they’re clearly talking and then they immediately stop, I can’t help but wonder: they’re onto me. They’ve figured out that I’m not enough. My anxieties increase along with my thoughts. I start to inflict my disappointment on myself, to think through the scenario in hopes that something will be different than the reality my thoughts are striving so hard to create. Why am I not funny enough, I ponder; will I ever be accepted for just being me?

I thought I’d be magically cured of being so concerned about what other people thought about me by now. At 28 years old, it does seem vaguely adolescent to be so affected by how I’m perceived. While I’ve made significant progress in recent years, it’s still not…enough. Quite frankly, I hate that I can’t automatically fit in with a group of people. I hate that I feel so “uncool” most of the time. I hate that I’m (seemingly) never the one people want to be around, to be seen with, to have the opportunities that others get. I often resent that I’m resigned to “being okay with not being enough” when all around me, people are encouraged to have it all, to make strides, to do great things.

And yet. Yet I have been practicing gratitude, and am so thankful for the myriad opportunities God has given me so far. I love the friends and family that I do have, and wouldn’t trade them for anything. I love Michael and our cat Mitzy and our cozy little apartment. I do consciously try to not let my emotions be so dependent on my circumstances, because as we all know, life is volatile and we’re not in control no matter how much we want to be. Even as I write this, I am aware of how much I do have and am feeling quite self conscious about sharing my turmoiled thoughts lest they be construed as self-centered nonsense. And perhaps they are.

I want to feel and truly believe that I’m okay not being enough, because obviously no one’s perfect and there’s always something else we “could” be doing that we aren’t in life. But here’s the thing: I also want everyone else to seem not okay, too. Misery loves company. I selfishly desire to “come out on top” (again, what does that mean?) just once; to prove myself to people that are probably so concerned with how they’re perceived that they won’t even notice.

I am aware that this approach is hardly mature and certainly doomed to failure, but it’s there regardless. I wish I didn’t experience these thoughts. I feel vulnerable and emotionally exposed right now, but I believe that Truth will set us free. I hope that by sharing this, the grip that these thoughts have on my (and maybe your) identity will be loosened, at least ever so slightly. Enough is enough.




What Shark Tank’s SkinnyMirror Says About Body Image

Michael and I are big fans of the ABC reality show Shark Tank. Every Friday night, we settle down to watch five filthy rich investors listen to the plea bargains of entrepreneurs dreaming of their chance to make their inventions and businesses a success. I find the whole thing fascinating, and for a while there we were considering starting our own business and pitching the idea to the “sharks” – we actually even got a call back when we applied! We never got things into gear, though, and so it never took off. But I digress.

Last week’s episode of Shark Tank featured a product that was of particular interest to me when it initially was promoted as a tool that would seemingly alter the way that people perceive their bodies. I was excited for a product platform to bring awareness to the positive body image movement, and eagerly awaited its reveal during the pitch.

[Tweet “What @SharkTankABC and @TheSkinnyMirror taught me about body image…”]


Belinda Jasmine is the owner and founder of the Skinny Mirror, a product that promises to slim down the object of its reflection by 10 pounds. Belinda thought of the idea when she discovered that her mirror at home was contributing to an illusion of her body being larger than it really was. She realized that her body image was affecting her emotions and mood as a result. In a moment of inspiration, Belinda decided to look into a product that would positively affect body image, and what emerged was a mirror that would make anyone look ten pounds lighter. 

Spoiler warning: Belinda didn’t walk away with a deal for her SkinnyMirror. The Sharks were concerned that retail companies were utilizing it to falsely lure customers into purchasing clothing that looked differently in the reflection of the store’s mirror than in the one they faced at home. From a business perspective, that makes sense – it’s essentially a lawsuit waiting to happen. But there are three reasons why I think the SkinnyMirror might cause more harm than good when it comes to body image

1. The SkinnyMirror is deceptive.

The sharks were on to something when they raised concerns about the deceptive nature of the SkinnyMirror. A person looking into a mirror expects to see their reflection – and if that image is noticeably different than what they know to be true, they are believing a lie whether they know it or not. The premise of the company is essentially based on the white lie theory – if telling an “untruth” helps or at the very least doesn’t hurt someone, it’s okay. In the end, the truth always does come out – and if you’re a company advocating against it, that’s only going to hurt you. From the body image perspective, believing something you know to be untrue simply because it makes you feel more accepted, valued, or perceived differently, is venturing into extremely dangerous territory. 

2. The SkinnyMirror advocates thinness above all else.

Belinda’s product necessitates that we all should desire to lose “the last 10 pounds”. The thin ideal that our society worships is normalized and even promoted by a product that effectively lies to its customers. It’s obvious that the target market for the SkinnyMirror is women; the product just another tool put into place to tell us that we’re not enough as we are. I just can’t get on board with that.

3. The SkinnyMirror is attempting to fix a problem that it’s contributing to.

The desire to instill positive and healthy body image in people is certainly laudable, and I do think that this is what Belinda Jasmine ultimately desires to do with her product. However, I personally don’t think that a mirror that shows me only what I want to see is the answer to the issue. During her pitch on Shark Tank, Belinda stated that many SkinnyMirror customers reported enhanced positive feelings towards their bodies and many even lost the weight that they wanted to lose.  The mirror is being promoted as a weight loss tool, and what’s more – there is still the underlying belief that being thin – or at least thinner – than what you currently are is the ultimate goal. That if I see myself as a super thin woman that I’ll have the confidence I never thought I had – but the reality is that I don’t need a mirror to do that.  

I’m not in any way denigrating Belinda or questioning her intentions. I do think she means well with her message. What bothers me, though, is the fact that one’s reflection is given so much value in the first place. Shouldn’t the message be to not let our emotions be driven by what a mirror shows us? And yet, I do think that it’s okay to want to feel confident in our own skin and to feel pretty; that is, after all, why the cosmetics industry exists.

To end, I’ll admit that I found myself secretly wanting to try the mirror just to see what it would show me. And then I started thinking about all of the things  about my body that I felt needed to change; to improve – and that’s when I realized it. The SkinnyMirror denies its customers the ability to be fully present in themselves, and instead transforms them into a likeness less messy and more socially acceptable. As much as I desire this type of identity for myself, ultimately I feel like ignoring one’s reality brings on way more trouble than it’s worth.



Thinking Out Loud: October 22, 2015

Hi folks! I promise I’ll have more interesting content soon….I’m struggling with motivation, to be honest, but I still love writing about body image and all that comes with it, so I just need to take time and write those thoughts up.

I know I’ve been doing some Wordy Wednesday posts previously, but given my new slightly erratic posting schedule, I figured it was a good a time as any to participate in Amanda’s Thinking Out Loud linkup!

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1. This is a little unsavory, but I currently have this rash thing around the outside of my lower lip. I actually get these types of things quite frequently, and at one point thought I was allergic to my makeup, but this seemed to be in a league of its own this time. Do any of you have this problem and/or suggestions??

2. Do any of you listen to the NPR program On Point? It’s actually broadcast from WBUR here in Boston, but it’s so popular it gets syndicated throughout the country at various times. I highly, highly recommend it – host Tom Ashbrook is so engaging and has such a nice voice – my friend Leeann and I think he should be a therapist in his next career! He covers all sorts of topics, typically in conjunction with current news and events, and it’s fascinating hearing from listeners and the guests as they weigh in on certain issues. One episode I particularly recommend is on the nature of pop music and its musical roots in various Scandinavian countries – it was so fascinating! Yesterday’s episode was on postpartum depression which was also very interesting. I believe you can get all of the episodes via iTunes if you’re interested, which I think you will be  😀 .

3. On Monday, I attempted to touch up my very obvious roots at home. As is quite obvious I’m sure, I do color my hair to its platinum hue; my natural hair color is what many call (and a term which I HATE) “dirty blonde”. My roots were pretty bad and even though I had made an appointment for Friday, I decided to see if I could save some money by doing it myself. Yeah…not so much. It turned out okay, but I was left with some brassiness at the top roots and I didn’t fully hit every faded spot. I ordered some toning purple shampoo that people seem to rave about, so we’ll see if that helps. I should probably leave it to the professionals going forward – dang it!

4. Have you had a chance to check out Booya Fitness and my 4 week weatherproof workouts plan? When/if you do, let me know what you think. I’d love feedback!

Alright, y’all – my eyes feel like they’re going to glaze over from staring at a computer screen so much today, so I’ll leave it there. I hope you have a blessed day and weekend ahead!



Practical. Healthy. Life.