Wednesday, November 6, 2013

My body is my temple

Yesterday I received one of the best complements since starting this whole weight loss journey.  Most often people say something like "Oh my God you look so good now".  Yes, they mean it as a complement but what it makes you feel and think is that you weren't pretty or beautiful before the weight loss.  Sometimes it can be hard to hear something like that.  After my blog post yesterday though, someone told me that I glow with my health.  It was so simple and profound.  I love that people can look past the immediate facade and see that the light comes from within.  It isn't a smaller waist that has made me so happy and caused me to smile a little bigger.  What really makes my inner beauty shine through my exterior is my health.  I may not be the smallest I've ever been, but I sure do feel the best.  I don't need a gap between my thighs or six pack to make me feel that way.

My satisfaction comes from somewhere deep inside where a battle was brewing between that voice that says "no, you can't do it" and the tiny glimmer of light that keeps hope alive and keeps whispering "yes, you can".  With each mile I swim, bike, run, walk, waddle, jog, or stumble, I am able to kindle that fire a tiny bit more so that it keeps growing and shining out to help guide the way for others.  Being able to motivate and inspire others is what makes me feel strong.  Giving unconditionally of yourself to help others, helps you.  Whenever I'm having a rough day some sort of signal goes out and someone will reach out to me and ask for advice.  In helping them, it renews my drive to keep going.

I don't think I'll ever have a gap between my thighs anyway, and that's just fine with me.  Every body was built differently and while I have plenty of flaws, I love myself because despite all of the hell I put my body through it continues to persevere and conquer.  I still have plenty of fat, yes there are stretch marks too, eventually I might have some lose skin, and I'm OK with all of that.  Those are all part of the process.  I don't need to be perfect, I only need to be the best version of myself possible, whatever that may be.  There's no shame in having a curve to your hips or thickness to your thighs.

A friend of mine did a project where she had a group of women who were all considered "plus size" pose for photos and discuss their body image as well as self esteem and confidence.  It was an amazing experience and I encourage you to try something similar.  You'll be surprised to see just how beautiful everyone thinks you are even if you may not always see the beauty yourself.  So that being said, below is the picture from my shoot, I was at least 40 pounds heavier than I am now but there wasn't a soul in the world who could have told me I wasn't beautiful just the way I was.  I'm still curvy and sassy, there's just a little less of me now.
In this picture I was at the bigger end of a size 16, weighed over 220 pounds and I'm only 5'1

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