I'm not one to let my opinion stick in the craw of my throat. I found your article, and your insights, interesting and perceptive. Myself, I am one of those crazy hybrids--Tohono O'odham (enrolled), Skidi-Pawnee (culturally), White and Spanish (biologically). I'm sure you can surmise by my breakdown where the majority of my understanding of the world and my place in it stem.
I bring up my biological make up because it influences my physical make up. My looks. Admittedly I was heavy most of my life and your personal observation regarding an IHS scale is something to which I relate! Although I am not as heavy as I once was I still refuse to overtly look at the numbers on the scale knowing that they will ruin my day. LOL Of course I cover my face and peek through my fingers because where would I be without self-fladguation(sp) in that case?? Regardless I just wanted to share something that my brilliant 21 year old son has shared with me a lot in the past few years.
Beauty to him--what he is attracted to has more to do with his perception of me. I am both humbled and a little frightened by the power I held when I did not even know it possible. In other words he is attracted to, and finds beautiful, those women who are fairly tall, have something of a figure (fake boobs being a HUGE turn off) a waist, a rear end, and thighs. He prefers natural beauty--he doesn't understand why women put so much gunk on their faces. The other day he was looking at me and said, "It's cool mom that you can just put on eye liner and that other stuff (mascara) on your eyelashes and that's all you need to do and you look good." --I'm blushing.
Of course what I'm saying doesn't mean that I don't put my hair up when it's the weekend and I don't feel like dealing with my hair or U of A game days and I wear U of A sweats, and t-shirts. It also doesn't mean that I don't need to call my local beauty salon and make an appointment to have my hair "done." But what I am saying is that over the years I've seen those folks who are influenced by Eurpean standards of beauty and their aesthetic only goes skin deep. I'm also saying that my son told me too that he's attracted to a woman with an opinion and who likes to "argue" with him about it.
I'm not trying to take credit for my son. Instead I'm going to say that he inspires me and he gives all us Native WOMEN real hope. What he sees is more than fake boobs. Maybe we should take the time to see that too. Anyway, that's my two cents.