So today I am going to explore what is becoming, on the internet, a very common theme. Learning to love your body. But as common as you might think it is now it still needs to be written about. It needs to be written about, blogged about, tweeted about, facebooked, instagramed and google plused until it outnumbers posts,blogs, tweets about hating your body, about being pro-ana, about thigh gaps, about low body fat percentages. It needs to go on until when you google fat thighs or flat stomach or weight loss or fad diets or thigh gap google replies you are still worthy as a person even if your body doesn’t conform to a narrowly defined stereotype of beauty. Enjoy life now.
When I started this year with the notion to get strong I meant physically. Mentally, especially when it comes to my body image, I’m a bit of a mess. However as my deadlift has grown so has my disgust, not at my body, but how I view my body.
“‘Every moment we spend worrying about our physical ‘‘flaws’’ is a moment wasted,a slice of life that we will never get back” Please read this letter from a daughter to her mother about how her mother influenced her body image. This is happening everyday to a new generation of children, who are going to grow up loathing themselves unless they hit a certain jean size.
I have to admit having my son and daughter has, and I’m sorry to use this phrase, made me want to be a better person, so they have a role model.
I have a terrible habit of when I wake up I put my hand on my stomach, to see how squidgy it is. This is a truly bad thing to do. Why? Why would how I feel on a certain day have anything to do with how squidgy my belly feels? It’s insane. I know it’s insane.
However in the last few months I have been practising something the Nia Shanks has put into words:
It’s slowly working. I wrote a piece the other day which ended “how I look at my body in the mirror, when I look I don’t see flabby arms and wobbly thighs I see power and strength.”
I got a friend to read it before I sent it and she asked me if that’s what I honestly see. About 90% of the time yes, yes I do. I am training myself to see the good about my body and not the bad, because that is what my children and husband see and love. Of course there are always bad moments, being continually barraged by images of slim woman is sometimes difficult to counter but when this does happen I don’t involve my children. Fat is never to be used in a derogatory fashion in front of my children.
Whilst becoming physically stronger is for me, the mental strength is for them. We need to break this cycle, we need to raise a generation of woman (and men) who don’t hate themselves so much that they have patches SEWN ONTO THEIR TONGUES to make eating too painful.
Now I must go and see if I can move a 170kg yoke.