I had a topic all set for today's post, but then I saw this on The Berry:
And it brought tears to my eyes. Why? I think that's obvious, because it's just not fair that we ladies mostly look like the gorgeous women in the bottom picture, but still dismiss that body shape as inferior to the shapes in the top picture.
It made me sad because I myself think the ladies below are fine, and normal, and I think I probably could fit in very well and very comfortable, with them. But...
Why a but? What's wrong with me that I can't accept it? I brought a child into this world, my body supported life and fed that little life for nearly a year. Why can't I get over the fact that I still don't fit in my skinny jeans?
I put a lot of emphasis on physical fitness in my life. My upper arms are fat and my love handles are ever-present, and I take those, from time to time, as signs of failure. I eat too much. I drink alcohol. I have steak too often. I can eat half a bag of Trader Joe's herbed popcorn. I don't work out hard enough.
A friend has a family member who is obsessed with working out. To skip a workout is a threat upon their entire existence. I used to be like that. I remember, at my thinnest (135lb at 5;11"), I was sobbing hysterically, pinching the literal inch of chub on my stomach, wailing to Todd that I was such an undisciplined fat ass and I didn't deserve to go out to dinner that night.
Yeah. You read all of that correctly.
And now, here I am, in a body that I had dreaded so horribly. Except... I feel the same now, as I did then, so much thinner and younger. I was terrified of gaining then, and I still am now, except I already gained it back. But I wasn't happy, due to that terror. And now that it's happened... Eh? Who cares, I guess?
It still bothers me, and I still obsess about it. I stare hungrily at the fit chicks in the gym, wondering what they do, if I should copy their every routine and workout regimen, until I realize... if I TRULY wanted it, I could do it. There is a 50 something woman there, big bouncy boobs, skinny as a rail, but she's there literally every single day. It is her absolute top priority, and it just isn't for me, anymore. I try to get there five days a week, but my workouts aren't 2 hours a day. More like one, if that.
I could quit drinking wine, stop eating steak once a week (IT IS SO GOOD YOU GUYS), drastically diminish my portions (a deck of cards is a serving of meat? Go fuck off!), fully commit to the Paleo diet (hello bagels), and wake up at 5am to go to the gym instead of wake up with my family and have fun bed-jumping time with a bursty, perky little 2 year old.
I think of the Victoria's Secret models, their beautiful bodies, their disciplined selves. The diets they go through before a runway show, the fact that Miranda Kerr, a mommy herself, relies on lots of juicing to maintain her figure. My brother in law and sister in law did juicing for awhile. In Amery's words, they got over it. Because COME ON.
Granted, if I were a runway model for fucking underwear, I'd live off wheatgrass and kale water or whatever, but... I don't know. I did that route, to get to my thinnest, but I still wasn't happy. I was just as critical and miserable as I am now, except now I have a baby, a husband, a happy family and delicious, delicious home made meals. They're not extravagant, they're healthy and nutritious, but food isn't an enemy.
I've put on some weight this week, due to a weekend of food and fun, and it bothers me, I won't lie. I can't work out because of my knee, we are about to go to California and romp on a beach where I will be surrounded by skinny minnies in their itsy bitsy bikinis. It's not a heart-warming idea, without a few workouts under my belt before I go. But... I have to just think of that photo. Those women in the Dove picture are still most likely models, albeit "plus size" and they all look really, really happy. Comfortable. Content.
I don't know what the conclusion of this post is. Perhaps it's that I'm torn. By the body I used to have and the discipline I used to have, both of which have been figuratively tossed out the window. The body and the discipline I have now are different, but so is my life.
I'm definitely a Dove Girl, not a VS Girl. Should I be sad about that? I don't think so. It's hard to change your perspective. It's hard to accept yourself, especially when there is obviously a bit of body dysmorphia going on. But I guess the whole message should be, rather than fight for a number on the scale, fight for acceptance. There are tears in my eyes as I type these last words, because I'm thinking of the photo, trying hard to accept myself the way I easily accept those Dove Girls. To give myself the understanding that I give out to others.
Since it's 100% an internal struggle, it's a lot harder. But I'm trying.
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