Updated: Mar 27
In one week, we will have hit our Pandaversary.
Among other things, a year will have elapsed since we started living in the weird abbreviated existence, mostly in lockdown.
It's been a year of lost time. I still refer to my children being in grades that they were in before the Pandemic. Not as a joke, but a lapse of time.
My closet looks untouched and unscathed. Clothes that I wore out, to work, with friends, hang limply and hidden in the back of my closet. Standing in there moving my sweats to the forefront for easy access in the morning, I think about what feelings my clothes conjured up in me in life before Covid.
One particular memory that rushes to me is about 11 years ago, when I was frantically scouring my bedroom with a crying baby slapped to my hip for something to wear; because I was invited out to a 20 something coworker's birthday soiree.
To think such trivial things brought me much anxiety and panic. I laugh now at the thought of the terror that would set as I ravaged my closet to find something to wear. The body-positive revelation was just taking off unlike it is today. I wish I had self-love, not to care what my new baby body looked like, and wore it with pride. But that was not the sentiment then; we were still tethered to the line of the "one size fits all" supermodel era.
In this moment, I have decided to LOVE MY BODY and all that comes with it.
A Glimpse in Time.
I work myself up every time I go through my closet contemplating time after time, what can I wear that doesn't scream, overweight, under fashionable mom.
If you ever got hold of my laptop and viewed the history, you would be gravely disappointed. You will not find everyday things people typically Google at 2:00 pm alone bored, regular porn, kitchen porn, Crate and Barrel porn. NO, I use my laptop with purpose ya'll...." plus size outfits for the clubs," "what to wear out -Ashley Graham." That's what ya gonna see in my history. And I've got to tell you it is a godsend. I have to thank the Grahams, the Jada Sezer, the Nadia Boulssian, to name a few of some of my favourite bloggers and style icons.
Not only do they give me great ideas of how to put an outfit together, but they also give me the confidence to feel comfortable in my new skin. Now I say new skin lightly. This "new skin" that I'm loosely throwing around has been my skin since the birth of my first child, 11 years ago.
Just as I did 11 years ago, I tell people that my daughter is younger, all cuddled in her stroller than, to justify the weight. And the reason I didn't come walking out of the hospital with my JLo size six jeans after having a child from my loins 24 hours beforehand, is the same reason I still believe that my "situation" (my current weight) is a temporary situation. I take any opportunity to throw the famous line, that my friends and family have heard a million times, I'm in a "current situation"; I've just had a baby. Meanwhile, my children are graduating high school.
I'm tired of showing strangers' old Facebook feeds of my skinny self. This behaviour needs to stop.
No one wants to know what I looked like back then, especially anyone who only knows me now; I'm turning into those women who are clinging on to their 23rd birthday talking about their beauty & youth. I need to stop. I do. Not only am I showing pictures of myself from another lifetime ago, but I'm also hurting my subconscious by putting it out in the world that I do not exist in the here and now.
My body changed. It changed after giving birth to two kids; it changed after 13 years of being married. I have come to terms with it, sort of, but the main thing is that this is my reality now.
I need to stop treating my body as a stepping stone because by doing this I'm missing out on the beauty of what it is today, wearing shitty clothes and looking like a junior in college with track pants and musty t-shirts from 1998.
I've learned to accept my body as it is today and dress the beautiful shapely curves it has. No one knows or cares what it used to be. Anyone who meets me in the 'here and now' at this moment only knows this body.
What do I have to do now to stop trying to live up to the past?
Well, first, it will be to buy and wear what is appropriate for my size today.
NO LONGER BUYING DRESSES 4 SIZES TO SMALL BELIEVING I WILL BE THAT SIZE IN 6 MONTHS. This behaviour only causes frustration and letdowns, I vow to buy clothes that fit me NOW.
Over time I'll come to accept my body, even love it. But from time to time, I will have flashbacks of those days before kids, and that's only normal.
There has been such a fantastic movement with body-positive energy in the last decade, and I am here for it. I had to re-learn my thoughts about my body and make sure it receives the love it truly deserves.
If I utter negative words about my body, my 11-year-old daughter will watch me in dismay. She was born into a generation that accepts 'just the way you are'... it's her way of life, and I love that.
Somehow, when the lockdowns are over, I will make it out the door with deep breaths, clenched teeth, and kitten heels a tapping.
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