A blog from a classmate stopped me in my tracks today. Jamie is a wonderful, wise woman, and her words leapt off the screen and into my heart. She's 100 percent right. She is beautiful. You are beautiful. We are all beautiful.
For many of us, saying that out loud is not easy. I know it's not easy for me. I likely risk getting hit with tomatoes for saying this, but I want to be honest: I don't love my body.
I definitely don't love my sagging rear, my flat chest or my flapping upper arms. I hate how my face looks older because the skin has loosened and falls into wrinkles around my eyes and mouth. And obviously, I've expressed my disgust with my legs.
There are definitely days I wish I could have my old body back. I miss the big boobs, full cheeks and sexy hips. Back then, I really did have the confidence to say I was beautiful. I knew it was true, and I had the plus-size swagger to prove it.
Today, I only WISH I could confidently say what Jamie said. I WISH I loved my body for what it is today and not what I want it to be. I want all my readers to know one thing: I may have won the battle with my scale, but I have not won the battle with my heart.
So yeah, I lost 105 pounds and a ton of pants sizes, but I didn't lose all of my personal baggage. No amount of "You look great" or "You're so skinny" can fix the issues inside my head. That's not an attempt at fishing for more compliments. That's the raw and unfortunate truth.
I could post a thousand training logs and recipes on this blog, and I still wouldn't have the answers to being a healthy person – inside and out. And I worry about what I say and don't say here because I don't want anyone to think I have all the answers. I want to encourage people who are seeking a healthy lifestyle, but I don't want to discourage anyone from being confident about who they already are.
I never intended to make anyone else feel bad about themselves. If I have, I'm sorry. Truly.
When I started blogging more often last year, the goal was to inspire others. But lately, I haven't even been able to inspire myself. Social media's tricky like that – we only show the sides of ourselves that we want others to see. So in the past few months, you've seen me running big races, hitting my goals and feeding my family delicious, nutritious meals.
What you haven't seen are the struggles. The conflicts in my mind. The emotional bullshit that I can no longer ignore and drown out with desserts. On TV, they like you to think an overweight person identifies their problems, addresses them and then magically loses the weight. They are cured!
For me, the problems didn't come to the surface until the weight was no longer hiding them. So now what do I do? I'm not sure. But until I feel at peace with my heart, I know I can't feel at peace with my body. I can't feel beautiful outside until I find the beauty inside.
Jamie's right. We can all be beautiful at any size. It's nothing to do with weight or fitness level or dress sizes. It's a state of mind. An appreciation for what your body is, rather than what society thinks it should be. You can be beautiful at every step and stage of life. Appreciate every curve, every angle, for what it is right now. Don't worry about what could be or might have been.
Today, you are beautiful. We are beautiful. And we have to keep fighting the good fight to remember it.