I’m having a bit of a mental breakdown. Not the end of the world, I’m doing everything in my power to fix it.
I suspect it’s hormones butting up against my feeble attempt to release beliefs which are definitely holding me back.
I know I am strong, I know I’m independent, capable, intelligent. I know I’m good at what I do and my business ever grows. I know I’m better every day at patience, kindness, and mastering money. I know I am able to do anything I put my mind to and willing to keep learning new things. I know I’m compassionate and caring towards everyone.
I know I’ve been working on myself for a long time and doing better in many ways because of it.
I care about myself enough to fix what’s broken, especially to make strides towards healing my body, my mind, and nourishing every part of myself. Honoring who I am. I’m not perfect, I’m human, but considering I was raised to not do any such thing, I’ve made huge strides.
Today’s efforts included finishing a book, healthy choices in diet and supplements (still doing pescatarian AIP), and going to the gym because they all help me be a better me.
Yet my workout was interrupted by tears and embarrassment. Running to the bathroom I hid in a stall crying. Another woman asked me if I needed anything, if I was hurt.
I just answered no, I’m okay. Because physically I’m fine, my current hurts are not visible. The workout was going great until the tears hit.
So why did they?
I’ve been fighting frustrations and anxiety since I woke this morning. I was doing my best to tell myself all the things I do know and run through all the good things. I was trying to Abraham myself up the emotional scale.
Then it hit me. The alignment issues I’ve had with people I love. For at least 2 or 3 of the people I gave my heart to, I don’t believe they find me beautiful.
Because I don’t feel beautiful.
I want so much to feel beautiful. But I have no idea how. The few times I have were looking at Nathan’s photographs of me. But there’s a voice that says it’s just what he sees as beautiful; others don’t find the same things beautiful.
Society has taught me that. In my 37 years, there’s been very few people my size on any screen or in any publication. Of those, none have my dark eye circles, none have stretch marks, floppy skin, or acne/psoriasis. At least not that the photographer, videographer, or producer would ever let you see.
We are so ingrained with the unrealistic idea of what’s supposed to be beautiful, that there’s no way any real woman will ever be able to even come close.
Yet when there’s only one way to be beautiful, and everyone is selling things to help you attempt to match that, how do you believe anything different?
How does one convince oneself that they are beautiful when slicing and dicing oneself is the best attempt to get there?
When every effort made only helps to feel better, and none show, how does one believe they are beautiful?
My belly sags- that is when it’s not bloated, my thighs touch, I have zits in places only Nathan sees. I chaffe when it’s hot, I get the equivalent to diaper rash when I eat gluten, and I don’t wear diapers. Despite having two children vaginally, I only have very slight issues when I sneeze or cough too much or too hard.
Yet yesterday I walked 12,000 steps without flinching.
But that’s strength and endurance, not beauty.
Beauty is in the eye of the beholder. In the eye- it’s visible. But we all see things differently. We all have our own perspective, our own life experiences which have shaped our preferences and taught us what is beautiful out not.
Unfortunately, I live in a society which has done such a great job at brainwashing everyone that I know none find me attractive. I’m too far outside what is trained to be beautiful. Even with all of my diligent efforts. Individuals make exceptions based on their direct family, but I’ve met so many women fighting this same mental battle, that I know there’s no hope. It’s why I hate the cosmetic medical procedure industry, they only contribute to millions of women hating their appearance, and unfortunately even their efforts rarely meet expectations.
But is there hope?
I have unleashed yet another piece to fix, another onion peel to cry over and shed. Every last one eventually had a solution. This will eventually too. That is for me.
What about the other millions and billions of women struggling with the same thought?
It has started, there are a few more big women in media these days.
But they are still covered in make-up, still photoshopped, still pryed into shaping garments, still airbrushed and tanned, still filtered in the camera, and finally still covered with clothes when those options fail.
Our kids need to see that all of every person is beautiful, even the flaws. When that day comes there will be hope for all of us.
For me I just hope to convince myself sooner than later that the ones I love really do see me as beautiful. I dare to hope to one day believe I am attractive to someone beautiful enough to be an Abercrombie and Fitch model. That feels better than coming to terms with Nathan loves me despite being completely ugly. I have no idea where to start, but like all things I’ll figure it out as I go, hopefully as quickly as learning manual tasks come for me.
May you all feel beautiful inside and out. May you see the fallacy of societal standards. May you have strength when you see things that try and convince you otherwise. May you show your knowledge to others. May you accept all of everyone, including their flaws. May you be blessed and loved in all ways.
Siva Hir Su