I got a request yesterday to review a book called “My Beautiful Mommy“. It is, no joke, a children’s book written to help little kids prepare for Mommy’s upcoming plastic surgery.
A.K.A. The Most Wrong Thing I Have Ever Been Asked to Review. I was tempted to ask for a copy just so I could write “World of No” all over it with a Sharpie, but I didn’t want to risk having it in my house where my kids might see it and find out such a thing exists.
I suppose if you’re the mother of a young child, and you’re planning to have plastic surgery, you might want a helpful book to show the kids what to expect. That’s better than Mommy coming home one day looking like Barbie with no explanation at all.
But why are we glorifying plastic surgery to kids? Why would a mom with a young child get plastic surgery at all?
It occurs to me that I might be a bit hypocritical here. After all, my five-year-old watched me get tattooed. It’s not like I’m opposed to cosmetic body modification, or want to hide it from my kids.
But I think there’s a strong message parents have a responsibility to send our kids about beauty, and it’s that it comes in all shapes and sizes. John wrote the other day about how our kids see us, and how we’d do well to see ourselves the same way. Our stretch marks and love handles just make us more perfect in our children’s eyes. They love the bodies we have, not the ones that are surgically sculpted to fit some external vision of beauty.
I know one freaky children’s book isn’t to blame for the beauty industry and what it does to women’s self-esteem. I just wish there was no reason at all for this book to exist.
If I were making a book called “My Beautiful Mommy” it wouldn’t be about surgery. It’d be a photo album of me with my crinkly smile and saggy belly and stretch marks and funky tattoos, playing and laughing and holding my beautiful daughters.
What would you put between the covers of “My Beautiful Mommy”, if you were making a book with this title?
Photo: Tracheotomy Bob