Every Inch of You is Perfect.

Now that we’re done with Toddler Tunes, I’m trying to stay current with the music my kids like. As a result, I discovered a song called “All About That Bass.”

The song is quite catchy, with doo-wop harmony that sounds like it was created in the 1950’s. But the subject of the song couldn’t be further from that era. It’s a song about a woman who loves and appreciates her body, even though writer/singer Meghan Trainor “ain’t no size 2.”

“All About That Bass” has become a sort of pop anthem for women of all sizes. The song skyrocketed to Number One on the Billboard charts and around the world. It’s got two Grammy nominations, for Song and Record of the Year.

The kids think I’m hysterical. When the song comes on the radio, Dylan dictates my car-driving dance moves as if he choreographed them himself.

“Then she puts up her pointer finger and waves it from side to side,” he says, laughing, as I dance with only my finger – for safety while driving a car.

And while it is fun and catchy, I discovered one horrifying thing when I tried to sing along with “All About That Bass.”

I can’t sing it without crying.

Meghan Trainor sings, “My mama, she told me don’t worry about your size,” and I burst into tears. Because I was taught that I should worry about my size. I learned it from everywhere.

Two lines later, when the song declares, “Every inch of you is perfect from the bottom to the top,” I am sobbing.

I think the reason I cry is because I spent the vast majority of my life not believing I was okay.

I feel pretty good about me now, for the most part. But I always feel 30 pounds overweight which, like much of the population, I am.

This song promises me that I am okay anyway. So I cry. I cry for the sheer joy of remembering that I am okay, no matter what size I am.

And I cry with happiness that the woman who wrote this song is broadcasting this OK-ness to the rest of the world. I cry because people are listening – young and old – and because maybe, like me, it reminds them of their own beauty.

Dylan’s 7th grade girlfriend, who is naturally gorgeous, was on a diet for the entire four months they were together.

She was 12.

It was so sad to watch, to hear, to know that this gorgeous girl was constantly worried about her size. Most of the girls in Dylan’s school are worried about their size.

And this song stands out among all the other pop songs, which come with videos – gorgeous guys declaring their love to perfect, leggy blondes, and size-zero girls dancing seductively on the screen.

Meanwhile, “All About That Bass” says what no one has ever said before: “Every inch of you is perfect from the bottom to the top.”

And it reminds me – but it’s painful, too, remembering the years that I hated myself for not being perfect. For not knowing that I was perfect, at any size. (There were other reasons I was not perfect, too – of course.)

I love the song, for what it can do for the new generation. I love what it does for me, every time it comes on the radio.

And I hope its positive impact lasts – for our kids’ sake, as well as ours.


  1. Janet Moore says:

    I know. My fault.

    • Lorrie Roth says:

      Oh Aunt Janet everything can not possibly be your fault!

    • Kirsten says:

      I don’t know how all these comments slipped by me! Mum, yes, it is all your fault. Whatever is NOT your fault is definitely mine. And Lorrie, OMG how I HATE that song by Tove Lo! Shane is now the school’s monitor and has explained to everyone its true meaning – and how dangerous it is. And Kelli, I doubt if my relationship with the song would change if I’d had girls instead of boys. It’s what’s inside me that makes me so passionate about various songs – not just what messages I want to impart. The best I can do at this point is to keep up with what the messages ARE out there – and try to counteract the negativity if the kids start getting sucked in. That’s all I can do, as a parent!

  2. Lorrie Roth says:

    Kelli, that song doesn’t bother me as much as the one by Tove Lo & Hippie Sabotage that says “You’re gone and I got to stay high all the time to keep you off my mind”. That song tells girls that her worth is measured by relationship status; as well as the solution is found in altering ones consciousness. To me this is much worse than celebrating a big butt or worrying if boys like a big butt. I tell Joy that a girl/woman is important whether in a relationship or not, skinny or chubby & that the most important thing is to love God and your neighbor as yourself! Be proud of who you are, just as you are. Now I finally understand why parents freak about music & it’s lyrics…

  3. Kelli says:

    Oh, gosh… I wonder if your reaction would be different if you had girls instead of boys. I have a serious love/hate relationship with this song and have sat the kids down more than once to talk about how perfect their bodies just because they ARE, not because “boys like more booty.” I still hear a sad message in those lyrics.

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