Monday, December 27, 2010

Weighty Matters, Part One.

I've never been comfortable with my weight. Every time I look in the mirror, my heart falls at what I see. And every time I look at pictures, whether they were taken a few months ago or a few years ago, I attack myself over how much weight I seem to have gained. The clothes I buy are ones that cover up my bodily imperfections rather than highlight what's gorgeous about me, and even in spite of feeling constantly like I need to lose weight, I persist in not exercising and poor eating habits. All of this insecurity has had an effect on every aspect of my life. I am constantly paranoid in what is actually an incredibly stable relationship, I'm oversensitive at anything anyone says that has the slightest thing to do with weight, even if it has nothing to with me, and I have felt viscously jealous of my slender friends, to the point that I am a slumping heap of a lack of confidence when I go out with them. So here's the deal. I am changing my attitude. It's time to love the body I've been blessed with and treat it with the respect it deserves. Weight and body image have always been really personal things with me and I feel a little strange writing about them here, but I also feel like it's a move I need to make. My silence was due in part to shame, and I've got it into my head that busting the shame away is a good first step towards confidence. I also think I should make this struggle more public because I know I'm not alone.There's a lot of us out there who have a hard time with their weight and body, and there's no better therapy than a supportive group of people helping you to feel otherwise.

As I mentioned before, I dress to disguise what I don't like about my body rather than to highlight what's actually rather pretty about my shape. That's been going through my head a lot lately, and today, when I stumbled across this thread on Jezebel, I realized I'd found a starting point. What do I like about my appearance? Let's do this.

♥ I have long legs and shapely calves.
♥ I get a big ole dimple on my left cheek, even when I smile just a little.
♥ I have soft, straight, and thick hair.
♥ High cheekbones? Holla!
♥ No matter my weight, my body has always got the hourglass thing going on.
♥ My complexion is pale but rosy. I think there's something rather classy and British about that.

I'll admit, head hung a little low, that the above list was kind of hard to make. I had to think hard about what I truly liked, and why I liked it. What's important for me is that the things I like about my appearance have to be things that I like because of my own very personal tastes, not because of societally-imposed ones. Yes, I've got myself a "cute" butt, and am told by many a fellow female that they would kill for my chest, but truth be told, those aren't things I treasure about my appearance. My boobs in particular make me incredibly self-conscious, and as such, they didn't make the list. I hope that throughout the course of this love-my-body journey I'll become comfortable with them and learn to love them, but right now the only reason they would rank with my cheekbones and pale skin is because they meet some sort of American ideal. Whatever. I'm just not there yet.

I may have set myself back with the boobs and butt rambling there, but I'm trying my hardest to be candid about this whole body thing. I am going to try to write a weekly post about the body image issue. I welcome any advice and guidance, so comment away. And if you're in the midst of a similar struggle, I would love to talk about it. Email me, comment, or tweet me. I would also recommend you check out one of my favorite blogs, Medicinal Marzipan. It is such a wealth of information on the subject and I read it daily. Reading it, in fact, is what helped me to decide I should make some changes about my body image issues. That's all for today. Lots of love to each and every one of you.

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