Sometimes I am really hard on myself. I think we all are at different times in our lives, or even at different times in our day. I am a major perfectionist and when things aren’t exactly perfect, I tend to get really stressed out about them. This is especially true when it comes to my body image. I am one of the 3.6 billion girls bred in a society with very high standards. I’m not a stick thin model, and as ridiculous as it sounds, I still picture that as my “goal body” sometimes, even though the rational side of my brain knows that that body doesn’t even exist in real life. As any normal human being does, I reflect on the past and try to learn from the mistakes I have made. Then I turn to the future and think about all of the changes I can make to reach my crazy goals. What about the now?
I am on a mission to start accepting the “now.” Over the summer, even though I was running my ass off, I gained weight. It started to make me really unhappy. I was trying really hard to eat as healthy as possible, and people who know me in real life know that what I fuel my body with is hardly ever junk food. It has seemed the harder I have tried to lose weight, the more I lost the battle and gained more weight. It has been tough feeling so out of control, and I keep looking back to the past when I have had a thinner body, and felt better about myself. I realized I probably shouldn’t be dwelling on the past because it’s over, and I have to start accepting the now – whatever that may be.
In school, for one of my classes I am starting to work on a mini research project about body image. I have read far too many scientific papers that have found body image dissatisfaction in girls as young as 6. By the time girls enter middle school, most of them have tried dieting in some form, and even in elementary school, the majority of girls “desired a thinner body.” It kind of made me sick. I thought about my childhood and I couldn’t think of one time until the late years of high school that I struggled with my body image. Not one. I was always the confident girl, never the thinnest, but always healthy and happy and I can always remember my mom asking me where I got my confidence from and I would just smile. I played sports with the boys and I would go shopping for bikinis with the girls, and I never once questioned myself or how I looked. I was me, and I was ok with it… actually I was pretty damn happy about it. I really want that feeling back because somehow, in the midst of leaving my teenage years, I lost it!
If I were sitting with those groups of girls, that are 6, 7, 8 years old, those young young girls who are already unhappy with their bodies, I would want to tell them this:
It’s probably not just the elementary school girls that need to hear it though 🙂
If you are ever looking through a magazine and starting to feel down on yourself, “Why can’t my skin be that flawless?” “I am pretty sure my legs will never look like that,” just check out THESE photoshop fails and it’s really easy to see just how fake photos in the media are. In order to be a super model, you must have flawless genes. Not jeans… genes. When I see a photo of a really fit and thin girl and think, “Wow, I wish I looked like that,” I would literally have to change my height, my bone structure, my heritage, and 99.9% of my other genes to get that look. Instead of getting sucked into images from the media, and heck even other bloggers out there, it’s time I start accepting me for me, and who I am right now.
I promise the cheesy quote photos filled with birds and sunshine and love are almost done, but I also wanted to say that I am SO healthy right now. I’m not trying to be sarcastic, or narcissistic, or blunt, but sometimes I forget what is really important. I have a healthy body, I have a loving family and incredibly supportive relatives, friends, and readers, and I have a lot of really amazing things going on in my life. Don’t let one drop of rain ruin that ginormous gorgeous rainbow (<– I am going to become a motivational speaker guys.)
I am going to
try and accept myself for who I am right NOW. Not who I was a year ago, or two years ago. Not who I want to be in six months, but who I am at this very moment.
I guess I should have warned you about how deep this post was going to be 😉 It’s been on my brain for a while so I finally wrote it.
If you were in a room with a group of 7-year-olds who told you they were going to start dieting to be thinner, what would you tell them? (And then go write it on a Post-It note and put it on your mirror 🙂
Tell me all of your plans for the weekend!