I was reading a fellow Sparker's blog the other day. If you are curious which one it is, here is the Linky:
She talks about an article she read, Linky here:
These posts cycle back to what I blogged about earlier - how being skinny doesn't make life wonderful, how it's not about the number on the scale but your health.
A year ago, I hated photos. I avoided the camera like mad. About the only way I'd let myself be photographed was from the neck up - as if that could 100% conceal the fact I was overweight.
But the bigger problem was that I couldn't see how beautiful I was. People were kind enough to tell me all the time how pretty I was - but I didn't believe it. I liked my hair (when it wasn't a mess, like my hair tends to be) and my green eyes and that was about it. I didn't like anything else, between the soles of my feet and the top of my head.
Would I have ever gone to my friend and said, "Whoa, what thunder thighs you have!"? Would I have ever said, "Beached whale, 100 miles inland!" to a loved one? Would I have told a complete stranger that her face looked bloated? Of course not! Because these people are more than just their weight - they are wonderful, unique beings, with sound minds and big hearts. They aren't a number on a scale or a size in pants or even a waist measurement.
So why was it OK for me to do that? Why could I not face the image in the mirror? Why could I not admit that I looked fine?
Today, I did something drastic. I was in a coffee shop, doing my coffee run, and I had to use the ladies' restroom. As I stood in the mirror to wash my hands, I looked at my image. And instead of running through the list of faults I could find, I instead went something like this:
"Your hair looks so CUTE today! You did a great job of styling it."
"That shirt fits nicely on you!"
"What a wonderful smile you have!"
"Your eyes are so green today!"
"I love the way these jeans look on me! I feel so sexy and beautiful!"
Any time my mind was tempted to wander to the parts I wasn't proud of myself, I bounced back with another compliment, another thing about my body I liked. I refused to entertain the thoughts that told me I wasn't perfect. I refused to acknowledge that I was anything less than amazing.
I am amazing, whether I am a size 20 or a size 10 or a size 4. My self-confidence and pride are slowly becoming unhinged from my weight. And yes, while it is important to be a healthy weight (note HEALTHY not "skinny" or "socially acceptable" weight), it is also important to have a health body image. Because a healthy body image won't automatically come to you once you get skinny. No matter what your size, you'll be able to find SOMETHING that doesn't fit with your "ideal". But if you aren't looking for that ideal past "I'm healthy and alive and me", then it won't matter anymore that the woman in the mirror isn't perfect - she's you and that's all that matters.