Over the last several years I have become more, um, meaty. I was always way to skinny. Everyone always urged me to eat more or encouraged me to have one more piece of cake. I was made fun of for being skinny. Friends and family would say ‘Don’t stand sideways or we can’t see you. You better jump around in the shower or you’ll go down the drain’ and other things to stress my thinness. I would laugh and eat my way into the next day knowing I would never suffer from being over weight.
I went to sleep one night around my forty-fifth birthday a skinny middle aged woman. I woke up a fat middle aged woman. I had gained thirty pounds overnight. My thighs touched. That had never happened in my life. I had fat thighs. Not only did I have fat thighs I had back fat too. Ok come on you know what I’m talking about that flap of fat the bulges around your bra in the back. Oh and don’t get me started about ankle wrinkles. Good God someone get me the Rowenta iron I’m all wrinkled!
I started this diatribe to tell you about my grandmother. Yes this is my Nanny who jumped into the #5 washtub with me when a rattlesnake decided to join us for a bath. The woman who married my grandfather and then believed he was staying in a swank hotel when he was in fact living in a tent on the courthouse lawn looking for work. Ah, the Great Depression, the good old days. Again, I digress.
Nanny had what we call a matronly figure. You know she was a tad thick of thigh and a bit bulging in the all the wrong bulgy places. She would try to squeeze everything in with the aid of a girdle. Now for you youngins who have never sqoze your skinny little butts into a girdle let me just say it’s Spanx on crack. They were made of rubber. RUBBER people. I want you to remember this as I tell my story.
Nanny got ready for church in her best blue suit and dotted her cheeks with some rouge. She combed her hair into place and blotted her lipstick on a Kleenex she spritzed on her perfume and double checked her appearance in the mirror. Then she slipped a handkerchief in her pocket book and headed out the door. They arrived at church in time to attend their adult Sunday school lesson. Then it was time for church.
Nanny bid farewell to her family and went to sit in the choir loft with the rest of the Sunday morning chorus. They sang "The Old Rugged Cross" and then went into a resounding chorus of "Let's All Gather at the River". It was a fairly warm morning in the little church. There wasn’t a lot of breeze blowing through the open door where every so often Deacon Williams would get up and spit his tobacco juice out. Mrs. Moore was trying desperately to keep Mr. Moore from snoring through the service and the children were fidgeting in their seats. Finally the preacher had pounded the pulpit for the last time in his sermon. He had spoken of fire and brimstone and the burning flames of hell and it was time for the invocation prayer. The little church house fell silent. Then there was a sound which echoed through the acoustics of the building which sounding like a fire cracker. Men who had been in war ducked, women who had young boys cut an evil eye toward their offspring and the preacher grabbed both sides of the dais awaiting the rapture. “Oh my goodness” came the songstress voice of Nanny. She scurried out of the choir loft and ran embarrassed to the Ladies room.