A subject I find incredibly important. We live in a society where our appearance is constantly judged, by others but also by ourselves. Unfortunately there are many people who look in the mirror and see an image they don’t like. People who don’t feel confident without make-up. People who don’t like their body shape. Zits, fat rolls, bony shoulders, broad shoulders, it seems as if no body-type is ever good enough. We all have flaws, insecurities. Can you imagine a world where everyone looks like a (photo-shopped)supermodel, even without make-up on, a new ‘natural’ look. I’m pretty sure we would still find flaws, maybe in a different way, but still we wouldn’t be content. If this would be reality -I am sorry to crush this ‘ideal’ image- but don’t you think this would make us so much less interesting. We would lose so much diversity and we should embrace our diversity. Because it is beautiful.
I have had struggles with my body image for many years. And now I’m happy to say that I am actually really happy with my body. The truth is my body still looks the same, mostly anyways. But internally I have changed. I have learned to appreciate my tiny posture, my lack of boobs, my skin even with my scars, bruises and impurities. I have accepted that you can see my rib cage when I bent forward and see my belly bulge at the same time. There are still things that I don’t like about my appearance, things that make me self aware. But I have decided that I can be content about them and I do realize how little they change about my appearance as a whole. Most importantly how they change me only for the better as a person.
I was always thin, something many people strive for. I wasn’t always happy though. Comments ranged from; ”Do you eat enough? If you don’t eat more, I will be worried about you having anorexia -no joke, someone actually told me this in a joke like way, after which I escaped to the bathroom to cry. Here have some more food, you need it. I wish I was as skinny as you are! You’re so lucky, you don’t get fat!” All these comment were made by people who care(d) for me. But I hope you can realize that they did not make me happy, not at all. Two lovely ladies did ask me why it would not be nice to hear that you are thin, after all it’s something they see as a positive thing. I explained them and I will explain it here as well, very short using my opinion. I never wanted to be skinny, I wanted to be healthy, a healthy weight. Hearing the words skinny or thin always made me feel like I was underweight. As if people would judge me for not eating enough, not being enough. And that hurts.
Mariët Mons wrote a beautiful post about beauty or function of our bodies. It is written in Dutch, and if you can please read it. Mariët writes beautiful. The main message is something that I want to share with you! It’s that we should realize that the value of our body does not depend on how it looks, the value is in it’s functionality. What really is important is health and love, and for this you do NOT need a perfect body that lacks flaws and follows all the beauty standards.
Here is a tiny exercise that may sound silly to some, but who cares. Kan gewoon:
Stand in front of your mirror, if possible a full body frame mirror. You can wear your favorite outfit, your underwear, nothing, it doesn’t really matter. Now close your eyes. Say all your flaws (out loud or in your mind) BUT follow them by saying a positive thing about the flaws as well. Start wherever you like, and finish when you feel like it. Take a deep calm breath and open your eyes.
I hope you realize that you are beautiful!