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Monday, August 12, 2013

The Road to Self Acceptance.... Some trip, huh?

Tis the time of the year where lots of skin is showing.

I just got back from our annual down the shore trip...

Sadly, it's just a weekend down the shore.

This particular shore point is a three hour drive and it's a combination trip to both go to my absolute favorite New Jersey short point and to see a dear friend who lives in that area.

In any case - we crammed as much fun in those few days as humanly possible and those days contained as much beach time as we could get in.

I'm a people watcher.  I observe and take things in around me.  I love the beach.  I love the sound of the ocean, the squawk of the seagulls flying over head and the feel of the sand between my toes, but I'm afraid of the ocean (a story for another day).  So while my husband took the girls into the water, I sat in the sun and watched the people around me.

I've personally been dieting and exercising - trying to get healthy and in some sort of shape over the past several months.  I've lost a ton of weight and lost three pants sizes, BUT - I am still not comfortable with what I see in the mirror.

One of my biggest goals this year was to wear a bikini top to the beach. My waist has always been on the small side.  I was truly hopeful.  As much weight as I lost, as many pants sizes as I lost - I couldn't do it.

I could not bring myself to go out of the house in my bikini top.

I looked in the mirror and I didn't like what was looking back at me.  There was no way I could leave my house and be in front of people comfortably. This killed me.  All the work I've done and continue to do and I could not fulfill my goal.

Shortly after, I read a Facebook status of one of my friends stating how people should look in the mirror before they leave their houses.  How these "fat girls" need to put their sh*t away.  It was incredibly offensive. This status really upset me and I addressed it with the upset that I felt.  Sadly, I allowed her status to feed my own personal insecurities of how I felt about myself.  I believe that if she didn't know me or my story & I actually were brave and confident enough to go out in my bikini top - I would be one of the people she was referring to.

Good for her!  Rock it Girl!
While I was on the beach this weekend, I saw a woman who was much, much larger than I.

...and she was wearing a leopard print bikini.

I was NOT horrified by how she looked.  I was NOT shocked by her appearance.

I WAS in awe of her strength of character and her self confidence.

She strutted her stuff as if she were Miss America.

She laughed and enjoyed her time with her friends, family, kids - whomever the people were she was with and she rocked her leopard bikini.

I so admire that.

In a world full of judgement of outer beauty - the world continually forgets about inner beauty and strength of character. This woman clearly did not give a flying shit what anyone thought of her.  She felt good about herself - so good that she put on that leopard print bikini and strutted her stuff on the beach.

...and I, couldn't even bring myself to put mine on.

I envy that woman's strength and positive self image and wish for even a minute that I could put on that bikini top and feel like Miss America, or even just sort of OK with the way I looked.

Because it's really about how we feel about ourselves....

I guess I've still got a long way to go in the self acceptance department.

You too?

You're not alone.

Right now, I want to be that big girl in a leopard print bikini laughing and dancing and strutting my stuff along the beach. if nothing else in the world matters.

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  1. I know what you mean about looking into that 'lying mirror'. The one that shows you all the things you don't want to see. It accuses and abuses me to no end, so I've learned not to look into it unless absolutely necessary.

    You've done so well losing so much weight, even though you're not yet comfortable with yourself. It takes time to accept the bits you don't like and it can be one hell of a long process to get comfortable with other people seeing your body.

    If you're on the beach, why not try wearing a bikini top with a sheer light fabric over it. That way you still get to enjoy the sun bathing but you're still covered in a nice way and not revealing bits you don't want on show (not that I know much about women's fashion).

    As for what your friend wrote that you referred to as offensive (I've not seen the article) I think that sometimes people do wear the wrong clothes that can't fit them or exposes way too much when it's not necessary, which in turn can make them look terrible, regardless to whether they are thin or fat, so it works both ways.

    Well, I truly hope you find your confidence and will be able to look in that mirror one day and say 'so what'...

    1. Thank you for your very kind comment! :)

  2. I feel sorry for the really skinny people who think they still need to lose five pounds when they really need a donut or two for breakfast. Lots of men prefer women who have an extra pound or two. I'm guessing that if you walked by in a bikini I would not be seeing what you see in the mirror.

    1. :) Thanks, Joe! :) I wouldn't pass up a donut either.... Especially if it's chocloate.

  3. Awwww.....Jenn, I feel for you. I just finished writing a difficult guest post on this very topic. I too, wish I could cast aside my fears and concerns over what others think of me and just rock a leopard bikini like the woman you saw on the beach!


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