Practicing What I Preach
Tuesday, October 09, 2012
I talk a lot about body love and acceptance. I always have. But most of the time, I'm a giant hypocrite.
At my lowest, I had a hard time looking in any mirror I walked by. I'd cry sometimes. I'd keep my arms crossed over my belly when I sat down. I fidgeted with my shirts to make sure any and all bulges were covered. I did this at my skinniest. I did it at my heaviest.
I'm trying not to do it now.
It's so easy to just hate. It's easy to be afraid and to speak negatively, hoping against hope that someone will say, "Stop it. You aren't fat!" That sort of encouragement feels good for a little while. But the self-hatred is still there.
And nobody on earth hated themselves into loving themselves. It just does not work that way.
So yesterday when I sat at the coffee shop sipping my coffee and nibbling a biscotti, I forced myself to peel my arm away from my midsection and to stop checking to see if I had a roll. I did. Most people do. Tummies fold when you sit. That's how they work. Even flat tummies.
And today at the gym, when I stripped down to get into the shower, I didn't panic at the sight of my cellulite and stretch marks left over from my fourteen year old hippy growth spurt. I looked in the mirror and said, "This body is good".
And it is! It's good even when I overeat. It's good when I skip a workout. It's good when it's five pounds heavier. Or ten pounds. Or a hundred pounds!
It's mine. It. Is. Mine. And it is okay to love it even if it's not at its best.
Loving yourself at any weight isn't the same as being lazy or content with less than your best even though that's what the haters will say. Loving yourself at any weight is the first step to making positive improvement. Not because you hate what you have.
Because you love it enough to want it to be its best.
And maybe its best doesn't have a six pack. It probably won't. It'll probably still have cellulite and wiggle and jiggle and a little fat. So? Own it. That body is YOURS.
This body is mine.
I still whine to my Awesome Husband. I tell him I feel fat. I'm not proud of it. What I am proud of is a body that doesn't quit. A body that is fit and strong and healthy at this size.
I don't plan to have children. But if I did, or even if I have nieces who look up to me, the last thing I want is them learning to fidget with their shirts and cover their tummies because they saw me doing it. That is not a legacy I want to promote. That is not a trend I want to continue.
So if I'm going to preach body love, I will practice it.
And I will stand in front of my mirror and see all the extra bits and still be able to say:
This body is good.
This body is mine.