Body Acceptance: How Are You Viewing Yourself? -
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  • I relate to every part of this. I’m now aware of how my negative thoughts can get out of control. In the midst of it I feel like I will never be able to change. But the truth is I have changed and I have to celebrate my small accomplishments.

    A short time ago I made a goal to be at the lowest weight I could be and still be considered healthy which I achieved through what would probably be considered disordered eating and excessive exercise. I lost my period for a year and still told myself I was being “healthy” by restricting food. My friend even asked me once if I was anorexic and I was annoyed. But I could tell she cared for me and was concerned for my health.

    I am learning slowly to view my body and myself in healthy, loving ways. It’s hard and takes time. It also requires reaching out for support. I have amazing support. Every day is still a challenge.

    I’m probably overweight now, but I know I’m healthy. I could lose a few pounds, but I can’t go back to those days where the more weight I lost the more accomplished I felt. In my mind I was healthy, so I got frustrated when people around me commented on my appearance. I heard I was “wasting away” and “too skinny” and was called “Twiggy”. Actually all of these comments made me feel good about my appearance. I had finally reached my goal. I didn’t need to lose any more weight. So I didn’t need to hate my body anymore. But then why did I still hate myself?

    All I ever wanted since I was a child, I had. I was finally skinny. I fit into a size 0. That was all I wanted. But why? I never actually questioned why I wanted this so badly. I still don’t know why, and yet I feel the compulsion to lose weight again. I know I could get back to a size 0 if I wanted. So I have to ask myself why do I want this? I don’t have a good answer. I try to think of it objectively by making a pros and cons list of what being skinny was like for me.

    When I was 100 lbs:
    pros- I fit into a size 0, I was lighter, I had a thigh gap, I took up less space, I didn’t get a period.
    cons- I was freaking cold all the time, my spine stuck out, my arms were bony, had no boobs, unsustainable without restricting food, feared gaining weight constantly.

    This helps me to remember that even when I was super skinny, it wasn’t perfect. My body will never be perfect whatever that even means. All I can hope for is a healthy body. I have that. So why do I hate my body for being healthy? I have no idea. But I know that I’m trying every day to not drown in my negative thoughts to the point where I allow them to control my behavior. I want to learn from my history and not repeat it. Now I fit in a size 8. This is the size I used to despise. But I’m healthy. I have my period regularly. I eat a variety of foods. I don’t count every single calorie or determine whether foods are good or bad. I just do my best to feed myself without too much judgement.

    I don’t want any little girl to hate her body, so I want to set an example. I want to be loving and caring toward my body. My weight is not my worth. That has been my mantra and sometimes it works. All I can hope for is that I learn to get out of my head as soon as my brain becomes a bully and focus on loving myself so I can love others.

    Thoughts and prayers to everyone facing body image issues. Let’s all stay healthy in the truest sense of the word.

  • Hi Bethany 🙂 Thanks for sharing some of your journey! It sounds like you’ve made some amazing progress. For me, it comes down to working on the “inside” part of us…how can I find happiness, acceptance, peace, love WITHOUT it being dependent on our body size? Can I close my eyes and remember that I am not just my body? But that I’m MORE than my reflection? This helped point me in the direction to find what it “felt like” to accept myself from the inside out 🙂 Sending you lots of love on your journey and know you are not alone!

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