Really early on in my blogging, I had wrote a blog about women’s self image. This is still the number one blog that women contact me about. As women, our bodies can go through massive changes through a short amount of time: pregnancy, medication, mental illness, and chronic illness are all things that pack on the pounds.
I want to share my story with you again. In December 2013, I went on a drug that packed on the pounds. I went from being a trim size 6, to an uncomfortable size 14. Mother Nature also gifted me with too many stretch marks to count and some pretty little dimples from cellulite. Also, at this time I was engaged and had to buy a new wedding dress that I didn’t care for five weeks before my wedding.I wish I could say my self confidence came from the inside, but I needed my then fiancé (now husband) to constantly reassure me that he was still attracted to me, I had to buy a whole new wardrobe, and pretend a confidence I didn’t have. It was absolutely depressing to see family that I haven’t seen in a long time rudely comment on my body shape or have people ask me if I was pregnant.
Now it’s been a year and a half, I still have the extra weight. If I start a new medication, I can easily pack on twenty pounds without any change in diet or activity level. If I focus on the constant body fluctuations, my mental health will go down the hill. Here are some ways I am learning to love myself even though it is a constant changing battle:
1) Self Hatred Gets me Nowhere:
I used to focus on the changes to an excess. I would stare in the mirror and see all the changes and be disgusted with myself. I would question why all of it is still there no matter what I try. Words are very important so no at least once a week, I stare and tell myself at least three things I love about myself.
2) Do What You Can to Love Yourself:
Three times a year I go clothes shopping. I focus on buying clothes that are flattering to my body. I also make sure I put on a little makeup and throw a curling iron through my hair.
3) Be Proud of the Inside:
I focus a lot on self growth. I read books, I listen to podcasts, and I do my best to focus on others. Whatever I can do to help those without any expectation. Growing on the inside and becoming genuinely proud of yourself can change your whole world view!
I hope in sharing my vulnerability that you too can walk this road with me to self acceptance and a peace that will take over your mind. The healthiest and most beautiful people are those who have a genuine love for others and themselves.