This facebook post by a beautiful friend of mine got me thinking:
I have come to the conclusion that I will never be a size 0, or 6 or even a 10 for that matter. But my body has remained healthy for 40 years, has endured several surgeries and healed remarkable well. It has carried, delivered and sustained three beautiful babies. So I have curves and jiggly parts, SO WHAT! My husband loves me. I am tired of the media making me feel like I’m fat! Why don’t all the magazines and commercials get models that are healthy sizes and shapes so our young girls will have realistic models to try and emulate. I’m 40 years old and still struggle with the fact that I don’t look like all the movie stars and models I am constantly bombarded with every time I pick up a magazine or turn on the TV.
I have been made to feel fat my entire life. I was told by my grandmother that I was “pretty, but I’d never be beautiful” and that I would “always be a big girl.” I took diet pills at 16 because I wasn’t the size of my other friends. I was the biggest girl on the cheerleading squad. I did the Atkins diet at 17. I have sustained myself off of coffee, pretzels, and peanut butter crackers (college). I played softball, cheered, exercised. It was never enough.
I brought a little girl into a world that teaches that EVERYTHING makes you fat. No more bologna and cheese sandwiches like my mom used to eat, or standing in line for the ice cream man (who didn’t love hearing the truck’s jingle a 1/2 mile away– begging every adult within earshot for ice cream money?). Sample sizes are a 2 and a 4… and you probably should be 5’9″ in order for that to be really legit. Anything over a size 6 is considered plus size modeling. I eat whole wheat bread, fruit and veggies, and I love everything green. I drink unsweet (I know! It’s like I’m not Southern!) tea because it’s calorie free. I exercise (not as much as I should… but isn’t that most everyone?) and I choose the calorie-burning option 90% of the time.
I am a size 16.
There. I said it.
Granted, I had a baby 6 months ago, but I was a 12/14 when I got pregnant. That’s where I usually am. My mother, mother-in-law, and sister-in-law are easily half that (and my mom eats ONLY junk food!). I am usually miserable when any one of these beautiful ladies decide to diet… because it makes me feel like more of a failure.
Why in the world should I feel that way?!?
“For you created my inmost being; you knit me together in my mother’s womb. I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made; your works are wonderful, I know that full well.” Psalm 139:14
Would God “knit me together” and think … “Eh, I could do better”? Does God think I’m “fat” because I don’t fit modern society’s preconceived notions of beauty? I have a friend who is 6 ft tall and is beautiful. I have a friend who is 5’9″, a size 2 and is beautiful. I have a friend who is 5’2″ and is not a size 2 and is beautiful.
How dare society tell us that we are not ideal? How dare we believe the lies that society tells us?
I remember being a little girl, looking in the mirror, thinking, “I’m really cute!” Ha, I really did! You know what? I WAS! I AM.
My daughter is breathtaking. I will not tell her that she will “never be beautiful” or “always be big.” I don’t believe God made a mistake when she was made. Why should I believe the same about me?
YOU ARE BEAUTIFUL IN YOUR OWN PERFECTLY, WONDERFULLY, UNIQUE WAY. DON’T LET ANYONE TELL YOU OTHERWISE.
Thanks, my friend, for reminding me of this tonight.