Have you ever heard the rumors that models have low self-esteems and constantly criticize their bodies? Silly, huh? One would think that someone who looks perfect from the outside might be endlessly happy on the inside. But that’s certainly not true.
Looking back on my childhood pictures, I can totally see that others were right. I always thought I was fat in high school, and never understood how no one else could see this obvious truth besides me. Thanks to certain conditioning and wiring from our closest family members, we all have some very messed up way of thinking about ourselves, and I wasn’t left out of this little gift of humanity either. My mother made sure to drill it into me that if I didn’t watch what I eat and constantly obsessed about how much I consumed, then in no time I would become a fat beach whale and no one will ever like more, nor marry me. Well…. I might have paraphrased & exaggerated a bit, but you get my point.
So I was obsessed with how much I ate, and as every great teenager with an eating disorder, I made sure that I properly starved myself all day and night. Interestingly enough, the more I tried to lose weight, the more weight I seemed to gained. Then hitting rock bottom a few years into this masochistic habit, I gave up and I didn’t care anymore about my weight and body. Oh, well, actually, my biggest heartbreak of my life assisted me with this decision. Since my first love left me unexpectedly, I couldn’t look at food anymore and I lost so much weight, that my family was seriously thought I might had cancer. After that, being fat or skinny was the least of my worries.
Then other boyfriends came into the picture, and with them SEX also arrived into my life. With sex came nudity, and with nudity came awareness of the existence of ignorant manly opinions about certain body parts of women. I was around men enough to hear how they talk about women (although I gotta admit, women are not any better either, right ladies?! ) and thanks to that, I shifted the focus of my obsession from food to certain body parts. My boobs got the biggest limelight and also my vagina. They were too big, too unequal, too saggy, too big areola, too big nipples, too weird pussy, etc…
Any by too this or too that, I mean anything that didn’t look exactly like the body parts in porn movies. Since I didn’t get to walk around and check what’s under everyone’s clothes, I had to get my information from other, “trusted” sources. 🙂
Then when I got tired o beating up myself for my intimate parts, I migrated up north to dissect the rest of my body. My belly button was a bit of an outie. Not sure when it came to my awareness that an outie is a horrible insult against society, and whoever has it should cover it up shamefully, but I remember how free I was before I knew about all these. Then I realized that my nose was humongous, my head was much bigger than the rest of the people on this Earth, and although my ears were too big –according to me, of course– I could hide that atrocity with my hair from the eye witnesses. My upper lip didn’t have that Angel’s touchy indent in the middle that everyone else happened to have, BUT me! Then my fingers were sausages, too short fingers, too robust palms. Not to mention the 11 lines between my eyebrows after I turned 20. Holy crap, could I obsess about them for hours after taking any photos of me?! My teeth weren’t perfect either. My butt was too small, too flat, too this, too that. Can you believe I never wanted to wear a crop top, because of my belly button? How I didn’t want to get into the water because that would have required a bikini that I was not ready to wear, only because of that minimal excess tiny skin in the middle of my banging, 6 pack washboard abs, damn it. Can you imagine that I only wanted to have sex in the dark, and never let guys go down on me?
Good lord, how crazy and self-critical can we be and how much fun I missed out on?
Yesterday at gymnastics class my 4 yr old (remember, FOUR!!!!) kept her sweater on and was uncomfortable the whole hour, but wouldn’t take it off for the love of her life. I asked her at home why she didn’t take it off and she said:
– Because my ARMPIT was showing in my leotard….
– And what’s wrong with armpits?- I Dared to ask.
– It sticks out (like a side boob) and has lines in it!!!! – answers a FOUR year old.
She is already self -conscious, but trust me, she didn’t get it from me. I have thankfully healed from this “not good enough” social plague already. There was a time when my distorted body image held me back from all the pleasures in life, but not anymore. I turned 30 when I realized what an idiot I had been for so long and consciously started accepting everything on my body, WITHOUT an exception. I showered ALL parts with loving acceptance and decided that no matter who says what, I am good the way I am.
My body has been such a loving, quite, accepting servant, vehicle for me from the very beginning. It takes me to places, it introduces me to delicious tastes, wonderful sights, warm, sweet smells, and soft touches and cuddles. It does whatever I tell it to do, and doesn’t complain when I abuse it. It houses me day and night, works very hard to heal itself when I mess it up with overworking it or not feeding it properly. It gifted me two beautiful and vibrant kids, grew them and brought them to this world, and fed them with itself for years. It is doing it’s job without my supervision over it and never asks for anything in return. And I have been doing nothing for 30 years, but criticizing it and hating it for every little imperfection. Or at least, things I DEEMED as imperfections.
I said stop! It’s enough! It deserves something much better than that.
And I stood in front of the mirror, looked at it fully (I might or might not have been high at this time) and started noticing all the beauties of it. The long, beautiful hair, the pretty face, the mesmerizing ocean blue eyes, the long neck, the firm, toned arms, the flat belly with six-pack, the curves on my side, my perfect thighs, my toned calf muscles, my silky smooth skin, my fetish worthy feet and everything in between. And I fell in love with it. I became my biggest cheerleader, my greatest lover. And let me tell you, since then, I have had the greatest experiences of my life. I have experienced sex that’s just out of this world, tastes without guilt, the joy of movement and dance and art, and I wear that bikini now as if I had the most gorgeous belly button in this entire world.
I’m gonna keep doing this and I hope that not just my words, but my whole life will convince my little daughter that everything on her is perfect as it is, and she will be her own biggest admirer and cheerleader as well.