Face vs. Ass

I’ve long heard that, as women age, they have to make a decision: face vs. ass. Via an Internet search, I just learned that this age-related dilemma was first vocalized by Mae West in the 1930s. The theory is that women have to choose whether to (1) be thin, resulting in a nice ass, but gaunt, older-than-their-age face, or (2) gain some weight, giving them a perhaps-too-ample derriere, but filled-out, less-wrinkled, younger-looking facial features.

Having gained 55 pounds in the past 11 months due to infertility medications, emotional eating, pregnancy and six weeks of bed rest, my ass is super-sized. I’m on track to be the largest I’ve ever been: I’m only seven pounds less than when I gave birth to my son, on his due date, five years ago—and I have two months of pregnancy to go.

This weight gain, complemented by very unflattering pregnancy symptoms, has me feeling unattractive because I am unattractive at this point. But throughout this tough, high-risk pregnancy, I naively thought I had one thing going for me—a younger-than-my-age face.

Earlier in my pregnancy, when acquaintances would ask how I was feeling, I would be honest about the differences between being pregnant at 36 versus 41. And many of them would exclaim, “Forty-one? You look so much younger!”

And I was holding on to this, sad to say, because every other physical asset is long gone.

Then tonight, as my son—who started reading on his fifth birthday two weeks ago—was reading to me before bed, he stopped short and said, “I don’t have any wrinkles on my head.”

Not seeing any link between this question and the text in his reader, which was along the lines of “Dan has a bat. Dan can tap, tap, tap the bat,” and so on, I simply answered, “No, you don’t.”

“Did you do this a lot?” he asked, scrunching up his face and forehead.

“Why?”

“Because you have a lot of wrinkles on your head.”

At this point, I asked him which character pictured on the pages had wrinkles on his/her forehead—the racoon, the cat, the kangaroo?

“None of them,” he said.

Apparently, my forehead is so wrinkled that it stirred him out of his reading revelry, leaving him no choice but to comment on it.

Now, I’m not a Botox® kind of girl, but, even if I were, I assume it wouldn’t be safe to have botulinum injected into the forehead of my pregnant body.

So I need to start strategically styling my bangs. Or wearing forehead-covering hats. Because after my son is born, I will lose this weight, improving the appearance of my ass. But if my face looks wrinkly when I’m at my all-time largest, it will look even older as I slim down.

Looks like my only choice is my ass…

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