I can’t remember a time that I have loved, much less appreciated my body.
I have spent a lifetime picking myself apart and critiquing hips that were always too wide, arms that weren’t very defined, and a face that was too round. I have never felt comfortable in a bathing suit. I have never felt like my body measured up to those around me.
I always wanted to be one of those dainty girls. You know the ones. Can be lifted up with one arm. Needs a hand getting a jar of pickles off the top shelf at the grocery store. The truth is God didn’t make me that way. God made me sturdy. He wants me to get my own stuff out of the cabinet.
Anytime I have ever seen a current photo of myself, I can’t stand what I see. I feel disappointed that I don’t see the perfection looking back at me that I have been fiercely chasing. I remember looking at my wedding photos when they came back and hating that I didn’t spend more time toning my arms and kicking myself for not losing those last 5 pounds. I look at those photos now and would give anything to be that healthy, glowing girl who didn’t appreciate how beautiful she was that day.
I spent my child and young adulthood battling weight issues that culminated in a woman who was 22 years old, overweight and unhappy. So I got to work and I lost over 60 pounds. I did it thinking all the time about how much fun I would have once I reached my goal. I thought about the cute clothes I would wear and how I would be tan and tone and unstoppable.
When I got there, I was proud of the work I had done but I still wasn’t happy and confident about how I looked.
Now I’m sure you’re wondering how all of this plays a role with Madison’s Closet. Self esteem, self-acceptance and body image are enormously impacted by the loss of a child. Arriving here as I did with this issue already has made those feelings even more intense.
I stand here today with weight to lose and perspective to gain. The difference this time is I want to find the peace that comes from being healthy both inside and out. I want to live that for my boys and Madison so they know what it looks like. I want to learn how to do this so that Madison’s Closet can support our sisters in loss if they find themselves on this same road.
That’s it – the truth I haven’t been sharing. I plan to write and share much more with you all as I do this work. If you find yourself relating to this, let’s tribe up! I’d love to support each other along this journey. Leave a comment below or send me an email.