Here is Paige and I in 2007. What is interesting to me about this time in my life was that it was one of the few times I actually felt comfortable in my body. I was at what I consider my natural weight.
To me it's not about numbers but about how you feel. When you don't have to really think twice about your body and your clothes fit comfy then I think you're at your best size for you, but during this time my mother swore I was anorexic. I wasn't, obviously, and I was not dieting.
I felt aligned after having finally left an abusive relationship with an alcoholic jackass, and the natural result was this size.
This felt like the real me, and even though I prefer the way I look when I have more weight on me (I'm about 25-30 pounds heavier right now than I was in the picture) I loved how I felt in my own skin at this size and that's what truly mattered.
I currently weigh the same as I did when I was 9 months pregnant if you can believe it, because I was tiny and allllll belly, which was super cute.
My size has gone up and down over the years, and I've struggled with body image issues all my life. It was never about the size I was; it's a gross misperception of myself because even at 120 pounds I believed I was fat, and sadly I was told by my family that I was (dad called me 'whale on the beach' when I wore a bikini).
I am still faced with some awful internal messages about my body each and every day, but I am chipping away at them bit by bit because I know I deserve to feel beautiful in my own skin at any size.
The voices have been so much stronger the past few years especially because I have transformed into an even curvier hottie. And while I can appreciate the beauty of these said curves in most photos, living with their existence is a whole other challenge.
If I spent most of my life believing I was fat, imagine how shitty it feels to have outgrown all of my clothes - which I did a few years ago.
But again, it's not about the weight. It's about the bullshit tapes still running through my mind.
And it's self abuse, really.
I wouldn't be friends with a person who criticizes my body the way that I do (I actually ended a friendship with a guy who mocked my weight gain), so shouldn't I befriend myself instead of repeatedly (and insanely) believing that I need to lose 20 pounds (something I believed 30 pounds ago as well, FYI).
I believe gradual and increasing self-acceptance is the solution.
If I put as much energy into finding ways to love and appreciate my body the way it is now as I do on criticizing it for not being what it once was or what I think it should be, then I could finally let myself off the hook and enjoy being in this body of mine.
And now that I've taken such great care of my home and released so much of the accumulated junk, I think it's time to focus on my other temple and discover ways to fall in love with it exactly as it is.
Wouldn't that be grand?
I think so, too.
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