Today I decided to fix my storage problem on my laptop, by attaching my external hard drive from my old computer up to it to start saving files onto. I decided to open it up and browse through forgotten photos of my life between high school and Aubrey. In it, I came across a folder labeled ‘My Body’.
I opened it, not knowing what I would find. There, before my eyes were photos of a confident scantily clad, pre-children body I never knew I had. How did I live my whole 20’s never realizing how great my body was and fit I looked. I was always wanting to get the scale to read under 120 lbs and under 20% Body fat. I hated the way I looked and would beat myself up, dragging myself to the gym 5-6 days a week and feeling guilty if I didn’t go. I had such dedication to something that I now look back on and realized didn’t matter that much. I LOOKED LIKE A GOD DAMN VICTORIA’S SECRET MODEL AND DIDN’T KNOW IT!
Now I sit here realizing how severe my body dysmorphia was and probably still is today. I have made 2 beautiful children with this body and have been lucky enough to shed most of the excess weight with only a little work and a somewhat proper diet. But, when the clothes come off, or I catch a glimpse of myself sideways in the mirror, I want to break down into tears. This is not the body I want to have. My cellulite is huge, my tummy is saggy, and my love handles now pour over the sides of my lower rise jeans.
But, I get told by my husband every day how much he loves my curves. When I am out in public, women tell me how fantastic I look post baby number two. And on top of all of that, I fit into most of my pre-pregnancy clothes. With all of this positivity over my new ‘mom body’, I start to wonder, is my body dysmorphia just as bad now as it was then? Will I look back on these photos in 5-10 years wondering why I beat myself up so much over the excess weight?
We need to learn a way as women to love what we look like no matter what. It’s a learning curve, but I now know that it is all in my brain, and probably in yours as well.
But I have a plan……
Let’s find one thing to make our brains happy with our bodies. Maybe that is cutting back your sugar intake, or working out in some form at least once a week. Start walking your kids to school, or eating more greens. Whatever works, start doing it. Throw out those ‘goal’ photos and plans like my lost ‘My Body’ folder and start with one thing that is easy to do and makes you feel good. Let that one thing train your mind into seeing your body is beautiful.
For me, running is my happy place. I don’t need weights to make me feel good about myself. I need a great pair of sneakers and an open space. So, starting now, I pledge to run once a week for me. Not for my body, but for my mind.
What do you ladies Pledge? because you all need to know how beautiful you are and someone right now is wishing they had your body.
P.S, Below are my progress photos since Poppy.