My last post was about deciding to love my body. And it’s true that I can pinpoint an exact moment when I made that final decision. But I don’t want people to think that it was easy or quick. I don’t want people to feel like I’m glossing over a struggle they’ve probably had for years, because I went through it as well, and I know it gets ugly.
I have been on a diet of some sort for roughly the last ten years. There have been periods where I barely ate anything, where I binged, where the primary focus of every waking moment was calorie intake and output. I’ve idolized the skinny, idolized the muscular. I can trash-talk my body and eating habits with the best of them – and us women are good at it. It’s almost like a hobby. I’ve hated hated hated myself and the way I look, completely unable to separate the one from the other.
So I know what it looks like and I know how all-consuming it can be. I’ve lived in that shit. And when I started thinking that maybe all this was horribly, terribly wrong, it took a long time for the idea to take root and grow. This is understandable. Change and growth takes time, especially something this monumentally counter-cultural.
I also don’t want people to think I did this alone. I was stupid lucky in the man I married. He never misses a chance to tell me I’m beautiful (or jump me when I do things like brush my teeth in my underwear, but to him that’s the same thing). And I feel like my faith, the deeper I go into it, simply does not allow for the kind of hatred I have directed at myself in the past.
So if that is your struggle, please don’t think that I was trying to minimalize it. I just wanted to show what it looked like for me on the other side and a little bit of how I got there. And lastly, if this describes you, fight. Your struggle is utterly valid, and utterly worth it. You are not a dysfunctional product – you are created in the image of God.