Thanks for your positive feedback regarding my new jeans. Final verdict: I’m keeping them—hooray! Even Michael decided they looked ok. Also, thanks for the advice. I definitely plan on wearing them with a tucked-in blouse, just not sure I can wear it without something covering the bum. You guys are giving my backside way too much credit.
This ties in nicely with another topic I’ve been wanting to write about: body image.
Before you roll your eyes and click away, hear me out. I’m not going to preach about how you need to treat your body as a temple (you do) or that confidence = beauty (it does), I’m just going to write my own story.
I’m a funny one when it comes to body image. I think most girls start noticing their “flaws” in junior high or high school. I was blissfully unaware until boys made fun of me, which happened for a few years. Even then, they had to point it out to me—I wasn’t the one who noticed my flaws. High school? Not a clue. I’ve never considered myself a very confident person, but I don’t remember feeling insecure because of the way I looked. The only body image comment I made was when I told my mom, “If I press my arms against my sides my arms look bigger.” From that moment on, when someone took a picture I did exactly that: pressed my arms against my sides so people wouldn’t notice that my elbow was by far the largest part of my arm.
I went to college and you’d think that’s when it finally hit. Nope. I had more confidence in college than any other time in my life. When I looked in the mirror I was happy. I knew I didn’t have a perfect body, but I felt really good. And off I paraded wearing another backless top (gah, what I wouldn’t give to tell my 19-year-old self that those tops were never cute).
It was not until a year or two after I graduated college that my thoughts changed. I don’t know what triggered it, but one day I looked in the mirror and thought, “Where did these hips come from?” and “When did I get a big butt?” Fast forward a few years and add, “What can I do to make my arms smaller?” and most recently, “Why are my thighs so large?” It drives Michael crazy. More than that, it drives me crazy. But ask me what I’ve done to change any of it. Nothing. As I’m typing this I’m drinking a white chocolate mocha from Starbucks and eating my second glazed donut. I’m ridiculous.
It's time to make a decision. I have two choices: Accept that this is how I’m going to look and quit complaining or do something about it. And I’ve decided it is time I do something about it. I look at my mom and think she looks amazing, but I also know she takes great care of herself. She works out, eats right, and her hard work has clearly paid off. She has more energy than me, more muscle than me, and more confidence than me. So why have I, at the age of 29, given up? Dumb. Dumb, dumb, dumb.
Do I want to lose weight? It’d be a nice side effect, but not the point. I just want to be healthy. To get that confidence back that I had 7 years ago. To look at my thighs and realize they’re bigger because they’re stronger. To understand my arms grew so that one day they might be able to carry a kiddo.
So what am I saying?
Treat your body as a temple and confidence = beauty. (And sometimes I fib when I want you to stick around.)