I’ve been thinking about writing a post like this for months — maybe for over a year, if I’m honest. But if I’m an open book on pretty much everything in my life, my own personal body image and situation equates to that book’s smallest font-size footnote written in some lost language of the world; in other words, I never talk about it.
In my head, I fight between two different, but strong as hell, points of view —>
On one hand: I’m at my heaviest and I’ve never been more self-conscious, depressed, and down about that fact.
On the other hand: I want to embrace beauty that is way more than skin deep, live the mindset that I wholeheartedly believe in that curvy is amazingly beautiful, be confident (especially when my weight is due to a health and medication issue), and stick my middle finger up to family, friends, acquaintances, and society who say “it’s okay, you’re still pretty even though ____.”
It’s so hard to vehemently believe and live in both sides of that brain, but that’s where I am today. I look at some of my favorite body positive accounts on Instagram that I adore and I envy their frame of mind sometimes.
All of this is not to say that I don’t desperately want and need to lose weight for my health and well-being, both physically and mentally. I do, and I continue to try my hardest every day to do so. But I also envy the confidence and comfortability I see in some of those women. Don’t get me wrong, I know I’m only seeing 10% of their lives through Instagram, and everyone has bad days or bad thoughts, or times when they are hard on themselves. I also know I need to give myself more grace. I just think that I fail to do that more often than not…
As a brief tangent on this post, I really want to share some of my favorite body positive accounts on Instagram – these women are unbelievably beautiful inside and out.
The thing about body positivity and our society is that we tend to talk out of both sides of our mouth. We want to embrace all types of bodies, feel confident and beautiful in our own skin. But then we live in a world where it’s as if you should have self-confidence if you are plus size, but you should be working to lose weight and be thinner at the same time. Don’t get me wrong, frankly the only thing we should be worried about with differing body types and weight is the health behind it.
However, let’s bring in the health behind it. For the most part, a healthy weight (notice I said healthy weight, not being skinny or thin) is what helps our bodies fight off disease, live longer, have more day to day energy and wellness, etc. But the key with that is that having those positive and necessary health benefits doesn’t mean you have to be super skinny. There are plenty of larger body types that are healthy as a horse – so we know that society plays a large role in this. Another huge disadvantage is the way in which we measure healthy weight – the BMI scale. If you talk to any modern, forward-thinking physician, they will recognize how flawed the BMI scale tends to be. However, we fail to have a solid replacement, and we fail to train our health systems and societies and physicians to think more inclusively. BMI scales are horrific indicators of health – they almost never translate to true healthy living/bodies; Nevertheless, we fail to move away from them at the same time.
So where does that leave us/me? This is seriously my daily struggle. I am confident in myself and I have a husband who adores me and absolutely thinks I’m beautiful on the outside and the inside. However, I am not what I want to be physically. I don’t have a goal to get back to before I was on steroids and ended up with all of this extra weight – I just have a goal of better health and a better view of my body. With all of my health issues, weight loss is one of the hardest things for my body to accomplish – my immune system and metabolism have failed to function properly for years. So the struggle is real – it is SLOW, and the fluctuation can be maddening. But the acceptance I have to have is of that “slow and steady wins the race” turtle.
Oof guys – as you can see, I almost talk out of both sides of my mouth personally on this issue and I’m all over the place. It can be such a mindfuck to have my brain feel both of these things SO vehemently. I think there is space for both of these viewpoints (body positivity and acceptance of who you are + weightloss and healthier goals) – I just think it’s extremely confusing while you’re living within it. What do you think – How do we balance these two frames of mind in our world today?