Saturday, September 4, 2010

My Journey to Body Acceptance Part 1

I never really meant for this blog to become so food centered, but I guess it makes sense that it has. A short time before I got pregnant, I was introduced to the world of fat acceptance by a friend via Shapely Prose. (I'll probably link to their posts a lot in this series even though Kate hasn't decided if she wants to continue the blog because they were my first exposure and therefore most concrete in my mind.) I was only beginning to absorb the ideas and question my own practices and beliefs when I got the news that I would soon be a mother. From that point on I have been, in earnest, fighting to normalize my relationship with my body, with food, and with exercise because avoiding passing on self-destructive/self-hating habits to my child/ren is really important to me. No matter how they look, the world gives kids all kinds of messages that they are not good enough. I want to do everything I can to make sure none of these messages come from or seem supported by me.

In this series I want to explore all of that, so I can parse it out for myself, so I can use it in my future children's adolescence, and also in case anyone who happens to read this might find it useful in navigating their own path to being kinder to themselves. At some point I'll post more specifics about my past and about the things I've done to come this far, but tonight I want to start with a victory.

I never liked pictures of myself. If I got dressed up and looked in the mirror I was capable of thinking I looked nice but if I was ever photographed and then I saw the pictures you can rest assured that up to now whatever I was wearing at the time would never be worn again due to how ZOMG DISGUSTING WHY DIDN'T ANYONE TELL ME? I looked in it. But a little over a month ago, I was at my MIL's house about to leave for church and I decided to snap a picture knowing I was in a situation where I would just have to accept the result and would not be able to change. So I did. And I looked at the picture, and felt nothing. Just kind of, "That's pretty much what I thought." It may not seem like much, but this is huge people.

For example,

I'm on the right, the one standing up straight. This is about 20 years ago and this is not a picture of a kid totally stoked to go trick-or-treating with her BFF. This is a picture of a kid wishing people would stop taking pictures of her because she's so freakin' fat and she'll probably have to be tortured by looking at these pictures later. And this isn't even the earliest I felt this way. I remember feeling too fat for the world in mother-effing pre-school so I've got a long way to go before I'm deprogrammed. But I've made some progress, and that's something.


~T said...

I'm with you, sister. People keep telling me how great I look now because I've lost weight. Makes me wonder how I looked to them before. But then again, I always comment when people have lost weight. It's an odd culture we live in.

BTW, you're pretty.

Summer said...

you're pretty too