A powerful video I came across on Tess Munster‘s page.
A powerful video I came across on Tess Munster‘s page.
One morning I woke up and cringed.
1. My unibrow was beginning to grow in, and my left eyebrow was racing straight upwards.
2. I hadn’t bleached the hair on my upper lip.
3. My curls were knotted, and then knotted again, and then knotted a third time.
4. I had two zits- one right beside the other- on my otherwise clear skin.
5. I could make out the scar in the middle of my forehead from an unfortunate USB flash drive incident.
6. The writing on my hand from my notes yesterday was smooshed on my face like some silly putty distorting an imprinted comic.
I didn’t look normal- I looked ugly. And those were just the facial issues.
I wasn’t happy with my appearance. I felt gross, lumpy, out of place, and ugly. Despite the hundreds of dollars I’ve spent on cosmetics, the relatively positive attitude I have, and my consistant beauty routines, I felt gross that day.
When I went out in public, I couldn’t help but spot my damn reflection in every surface I passed.
1. I walked beside a shiny car window.
2. The food court table at the mall was obnoxiously clean.
3. Some woman infront of me at Starbucks opened her compact.
4. I accidentally wandered into the mirror room at my dad’s store (seriously; mirrors, like, everywhere).
I probably even caught my reflection in a client’s lipgloss at work while I showed them how to shade in their eyebrows. Or when I drank that cup of water. Or in the microwave while heating up my leftover Chinese food. (Side Note: If you haven’t already, please please please go and eat at Evergreen Restaurant on Pembina. The food is unreal. Ask for ginger and green onion sauce– then pour it on everything. Or eat it with a spoon like my friend Amanda does. Either way works.)
It bummed me out. Especially since lately I thought I looked, oh, I dunno…
But I knew this was normal. I knew that in a few days, I’d wake up and look in the mirror to see myself as some glowing goddess of chipped teeth and dry hair, with permanent bra-strap-shoulder-gutters and too much blush. I knew that I’d walk past a reflective surface, and greet my mirror self with admiration- not pity. I knew this because I’m trying to be body confident,
and some days, body confidence means not really liking yourself.
To quote Chloe Vickar, a previous contributor to my blog, “Body positivity is a package deal — one simply cannot have the good days without the bad.”
Even the most confident people in the world are bound to feel miserable with themselves from time to time. I guarantee that everyone out there has had a day when they feel like the most perfect version of themselves, and others when they only see their least favourite features.
Body confidence is not a definite thing- it’s not like you either have it or you don’t. Some people have a lot of confidence, others a pocket full, and others an ounce. Some people have it all the time, others have it never, and some have it day-to-day. My goal for self love is not to be the perfect version of myself, but rather the version of myself I’m comfortable with that day. Rather than correcting the flaws or working on my thunder thighs or shaving my ‘stache, I’ve began trying to embrace parts of myself that other people may not find pretty. I’m trying to accept what I have on a daily basis.
Some days, I’m a pageant beauty queen. Other days, I’m pageant runner-up.
My soon to be sister-in-law Laura sent me photo series by photographer Gracie Hagen.
Illusions of the Body (warning: nudity), ” was made to tackle the supposed norms of what we think our bodies are supposed to look like. Most of us realize that the media displays only the prettiest photos of people, yet we compare ourselves to those images. We never get to see those photos juxtaposed against a picture of that same person looking unflattering. That contrast would help a lot of body image issues we as a culture have…
Celebrate your shapes, sizes & the odd contortions your body can get itself into. The human body is a weird & beautiful thing.”
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.