For my writers craft class, we had to write a paper in the form of a This I Believe essay. Basically, you talk about something you’re really passionate about; something that you truly believe in.
I decided to write about topics that intertwined with my blog, seeing as I’m passionate about self acceptance. I’d also like to give colossal props to my incredibly talented classmates who moved me to tears with their essays.
I believe in total body acceptance. I believe in the self-expressive twitch that drives fat women to skin tight dresses, and thin women to big, baggy, blue jeans. I believe in allowing a person, no matter their size, age, or gender, to adorn a pair of heels, slap on a pound of makeup, and not shave their legs for three-and-a-half months. I believe in wearing as little clothing as possible, and I believe in wearing as much clothing as possible. I believe in looking however the hell you want.
I used to draw my eyebrows in black. I’d shade, sketch and smooth my big ol’ ‘brows. I liked them dark and thick and cartoony. When I’d go into public, people would stare, and then people started to comment. They were taken aback by my decision to look the way I wanted. I started doing my eyebrows thinner and lighter to avoid public speculation, and then I stopped all together. I let stranger’s opinions spoil my confidence. Total body acceptance means respecting other people’s choices.
A lot of us body shame without knowing it. Saying things like, “She would be so pretty if…”, judging other people’s clothes, and playing dietitian are harmful vehicles that contribute to low self esteem. Total body acceptance means keeping your opinion to yourself.
Do not shame those who choose unusual adornments over a cookie-cutter social norm, and visa-versa. Self expression and confidence come in many different shapes and sizes, and what may give you a boost of self admiration is not the same for the person next to you. Difference in appearance and clothing is a good thing; thinking less of someone because of their difference in appearance and clothing, is not. Total body acceptance is admiring the self-expression of others
So acknowledge the differences that separate us from one another. Do not comment on the shortness of shorts, or the longness of dresses, but rather, admire the spirit of the person in that clothing. Do not judge the thickness, or lack of makeup, but the lips on the face that speak stories and valuable experience. Trust in the self expressive twitch that will drive you to dress up in bright colours, be edgy in black, or comfortably naked. Believe in the power of your favourite shirt, shoes, or hairstyle, regardless of other’s opinions. Believe in your fat areas, your thin areas. Believe in your choices. Believe in your eyebrows. Believe in total body acceptance.