B… so many words to choose from. Boys. Booze. Bad habits. Books…
I have struggled with (positive) body image my entire life. I’ve always been on the chunky side, but still healthy by doctor’s standards. *Okay now is a little different, but if it wasn’t for my prednisone baby, I would still be a healthy weight per doctor’s standards.
I’ve compared myself to friends who were skinnier or taller or had better hair. I’ve compared myself to celebrities who are basically paid to look the way they do. I’ve muttered the words “if I was just…” more times than I care to admit.
And sadly, it wasn’t just society filling my head with these thoughts. My own family always made me feel bad about myself. (Though none of them are in any position to talk themselves…) Especially when it came to eating. I love to eat. My relationship with food is unbreakable. But when family members are laughing or asking why you got another plate, it fills your head with thoughts of maybe I shouldn’t…
& please don’t get me started the aftermath of having your own (obese) father say you need to lose weight. Though I took everything he said with a grain of a salt; I mean really you can’t even fit on the roller coaster ride and you’re telling me I need to lose weight? 🐸☕ It still hurt.
》I once had a jerk with benefits tell me that I was a great girl and the sex was great, but I was too fat to be his girlfriend, when I questioned why we didn’t just date. Needless to say that was the last time I ever hung out with him. And a bit of irony, he recently popped up in the friend suggestion on Facebook… guess who’s fat now. Uhhuh… it ain’t just me. #Karma is a bitch ain’t it??
As I’ve gotten older, I have tried to develop a better relationship with my body image. I guess after so many failed diets and exercise regimes, and staying within a +/- 15lb plateau, you come to a point where you accept what is. I see “plus size” women who embrace their size and ooze confidence, and I want that. But it’s hard… when at just about every turn society is telling you that even those “plus size” women aren’t really ideal.
For instance… earlier today, I was doing of bit of guilty indulging at the Victoria’s Secret semi-annual sale. And while I know that VS mostly caters to the size 10 and under crowd, I still jumped at the chance for a 50% off bra. And wouldn’t you know that the majority of all the pictures and banners looked like the following:
& either I was super late to the party or all the other “plus size” ladies beat me to checkout because there weren’t many options. This color not available in that size. Was all I kept seeing. Finally!– I found something half-way decent in my size… and I say halfway decent because really why is it that the larger the size the fuglier the prints offered? Why can’t I have the cute polka dots in an L or XL?
And once again, I heard myself mentally thinking “if I was just…” and the list added up quickly. Which I absolutely hate. I hate that I am my own worse critic. Even more so now that I have this prednisone baby and chipmunk cheeks. And although I know it’s not my fault, as R repeatedly tells me “you’re on high doses of Prednisone and other weight gaining medicines, it’s not like you’re just sitting around eating Twinkies all day”; it’s really hard to maintain a positive attitude when you feel like Violet Beauregard post gum-eating disaster.
But then I think about my daughter… and I think about how I don’t want her to grow up hating her body like I do. I don’t want her to think her worth is based on the size she is. So I try to keep my negative thoughts to myself, because she is at that impressionable age where she repeats everything. Occasionally the “ugh I’m too fat in this” slips out when I’m trying to find something to wear, but hey I’m only human right. Sadly however, I’m sure that no matter how hard I try to enforce positive body image, she will eventually one day have her own insecurities and no amount of me and her daddy telling her otherwise will change her mind… it’s like it’s engraved in our DNA.
I can say this though… At the tender age of basically 3, even on my worst day she always tells me I’m pretty & that she wants to be “pretty like momma”. It makes my heart melt. And for a moment or two, I have really good positive body image vibes…
If only I could just make them last longer…