This is a guest post by someone who wishes to remain anonymous! Without further ado…
I love my body. I love my thin bones and my stretch marks. I love my fair skin and my toes shaped like turtle heads. I love my unique blend of smallness and roundness that changes subtly all the time. I love the shape of my legs and even the fact that my thighs sometimes rub together when I walk. I hear people complement each other for weight loss and say “you’re disappearing” like it’s a good thing, and I cringe.
I cringe because that used to be me, and it hurts to live life like you want to disappear.
As a young girl I wanted boobs so much. I would try on my mom’s bras in anticipation for the day they would actually fit. I felt beautiful then, and knew I would feel even more beautiful when I had the body of a woman. When my boobs showed up at the age of 13, I did not expect the barrage of guilt feelings that arrived with them. Guilt was a huge bummer that became a big deal for me for a very long time.
Depression set in as I was sure I was failing to live up to the social pressure around me to look “perfect” but be “modest”, both of which I felt were impossible to identify and achieve. I tried to listen to and watch everyone around me, to do what they did, so that I could feel good about myself, about my body. My efforts to copy everyone else’s advice resulted in an eating disorder and misery.
Finally, after years-and-years of this, I hurt so much I couldn’t stand it. In a moment of grace I stepped back and took a good look at myself. I blocked the outside voices. I blocked the pictures I was comparing myself to. I blocked out what people said I should and shouldn’t do.
I just looked at the naked truth about me, and I fell in love.
I decided in an instant that I was no longer going to give a shit what anyone else thought I should or shouldn’t look like. I realized it was better for me to run the risk of offending a few people here and there, or be ignored, or whatever else I was afraid of, than to continue torturing myself all day, every day, forever.
So here I am, perfectly happy to be in my body, and to be me. The eating disorder is long gone. I am alive for however long God is willing, and I’m going to enjoy every last thing about my body while I have it. My unique body is constantly changing in how it looks and feels. I’m done trying to control it.
I’m in a relationship with my body, one in which I get to love, honor and cherish it.
I listen to it. I am allowing it to take its full place in the world and it feels spectacular!
It has served me well to love the skin I’m in, right here, right now. Looking at my naked self in the mirror and falling in love is one of the best things I’ve ever done. It was a fabulous choice. No one made it for me. I won’t betray myself by choosing differently now. I choose self-love all day, every day because it lights me up.
With so many voices you could be listening to, I hope you listen to your own.
Remember this: You are gorgeous, and you are on earth to fill it up with your beauty.
You can take up as much or as little space as you want. It’s your choice. You only have to weigh your own opinion. Love yourself. Make your choices from that place of love.