“Did you lose all your baby weight?” Her question blindsided me.
“Not yet. I have ten pounds to go.” I caught a glimpse of my face in the rear view mirror. I lied. It was way more than ten pounds. The fullness in my cheeks gave the number away.
Where’s the mercy? I pushed out a human less than fourteen days ago. How could my girlfriend ask something so intrusive? Why do women continue to be the harshest critics?
I wanted to stay mad at overzealous Zumba mom. But it didn’t last long. Her interrogation led me to an epiphany. After a long cry, I decided now is the time to quit poking and pinching my body. Now is the time to embrace all of me.
Even if it meant battling unrealistic ideals.
These gross misconceptions stem from the modeling industry. An industry that manipulated the way I saw beauty, and ultimately, the way I saw myself. The biggest hazard of this trade was that I sincerely believed you could never be thin enough, pretty enough, or tall enough.
I’ve come a long way from counting calories and dress sizes. Yes, the days of depriving my body of respect are gone. But the scars still remain.
It wasn’t until I became a mother that I started to treat my body with love. With kindness. How could I carry a little person for nine months and not be in awe of my body?
My celebratory mood may not last forever so I’m going to take advantage of this moment while I can.
In honor of this Valentine’s Day, I’ve decided to embrace a different body part of mine for the next seven days. Today, I chose my shoulders. Mostly because my husband loves them and because I love my shoulders, too.
They’ve helped me express indecision better than most words.
Who knows? Maybe there is power in saying things out loud . . . Power in acknowledging that you’re beautiful. Power in coming face to face with the mirror and saying, “I love you.” Even if it’s not super model thin.
What’s your favorite body part? Are you ready to embrace the parts you love instead of hate?