This is a VERY important post to remind you that if you haven't already started getting thinner/browner/sexier then it is time to START. The weather is getting warmer and your body must be PERFECT in order for you to expose any part of it. Exfoliate, moisturise and per-fect lady. It's time to get beach body ready.
Oh excuse me... someone has just popped into my head - I'll tell him I'm busy and ask him to leave, it's the Beach Boss.
Beach Boss: Are you beach body ready?
Me: Well I'm ready for the beach, is that what you mean?
Beach Boss: Not really, haven't you seen my endless campaigns on what a perfect beach body looks like?
Me: The latest one?
Beach Boss: The one I have inflicted into your subconscious for the last 30 years.
Me: Oh that one. Yeah rings a bell. Thing is, I'm a bit tired. Some of those things are out of my control, like stretch marks, and other things, like spare tyres, I don't really have time for right now.
Beach Boss: Prioritise lady. What have we been saying for the last umpteen years. Pluck, preen, change, improve. You don't want to look like a woman with three kids do you?
Me: I am a woman with three kids.
Beach Boss: Yeah but you don't want to look like it. No one wants to look like what they are. Even movie stars don't look like movie stars.
Me: But I kind of do want to look like what I am, I'm quite proud of having kids. Ideally I'd like someone to just like me for that really. Can't I be perfect just the way I am?
Beach Boss: That's sweet love. But nobody ever made any money from looking just the way they are.
Beach Boss: If you grow hair, buy something to get rid of it. If you're too white, buy tan. If you have excess fat, buy membership to a gym you'll never have any time to attend. People pay good money to look like anything other than what they actually look like naturally.
Me: So it's all about money?
Beach Boss: Course it is. What isn't? We make you feel insecure enough to buy a product you believe will improve the way you appear to others and you buy into it because everyone else does.
Me: It sounds pretty sad.
Beach Boss: Happiness doesn't drive sales, or get that flat stomach that you think you need to be happy.
Sorry - he's left - where was I? Oh yes:
So this summer you NEED to get beach ready.
To do this I highly recommend stretching, flexing and exercising your mind and your perspective.
When I go to the beach this summer, for the first time in my life, I am going to be sacking off worrying about what I look like.
I am going to give my skinny, self conscious, teenage former-self a huge hug. I am going to tell her she's not fat...but she will get bigger. I am going to tell her that her boobs will grow, and then expand to ridiculous proportions when she's storing milk for her babies. And then they'll shrink and look like smaller, sadder versions of her pubescent ones. I'll tell her that the stomach muscles that she worries about now will separate and become crinkly and wrinkly.
And then I will tell her that I will see her again soon. She is pretty good at time travel is my teenage self. Every now and again a ghost of her appears standing next to me as I examine my ever changing naked body in the mirror. She grimaces at my boobs and pokes my stomach in silent horror.
And then I'll tell her to fuck off.
My teenage self may have looked better, but I prefer my 30 year old self.
Beach body no longer means firmer and more lithe.
The things my beach body needs to be able to do is leg it over the pebbles and stop someone eating suncream. It needs to wipe sand out of eyes. It needs to stand shivering ankle deep in the sea as it swings a child into the waves. It needs the ability to shove on some flip flops and run to the nearest toilet with a toddler under arm. My beach body is the hands that the melting ice cream drips onto, and it is the eyes squinting into the sun trying to remember where we were sitting.
At the end of the long day that is life, these are the things we remember. Not how good we look in a bikini, stationed on a lounger, worrying about what our tits look like at that angle.
I am beach body ready. So are you.