I'm about to completely bare my soul to you, show you the part of me that I have incredibly painful inner struggles with. I'm not getting into it for you to make me feel better, I don't want comments filled with empty compliments... I need to know how I keep my beautiful girls from getting to the place I am.
This post is about looking in the mirror.
I have always been insecure, in high school it was just par for the course,. Is anyone not insecure in high school? Looking back, I feel like I was maybe slightly less insecure in college, but I've been on a steep downhill slide since having kids. After Natalee was born, I never lost the extra weight I had put on and I hated myself more and more. I had Olive and finally told Sean that I couldn't live that way anymore. Thankfully he agreed that we would work together to change our lives and be healthier. I lost a lot of weight, and I've kept it off. I thought that when I met my goal weight I would start to feel better, I might believe in myself a little. It didn't happen.
About a year ago I heard about My Body Gallery, I go there now and then, enter in my height & weight... those women look great. So, why can't I see myself the same way? I look in the mirror and all I see are stretch marks on my tummy, breasts that used to be near perfect and now are nowhere close to that. I'm not at all empowered by having given birth. I don't see these imperfections as having "earned my stripes" I just see them as the reason I'll never be beautiful.
This isn't the person that I want to be at this stage of my life. I'm 31 years old, I should have outgrown these insecurities by now. I want to enjoy having photos taken, I want to be proud of the person I've become. I want to go swimming with my kids and have as much fun as they are, not worry about getting covered back up. I've tried to talk to Sean about these things, but he can't understand how deep this runs. I also don't want him saying things to me that he doesn't believe only because he feels like he should or that he has to.
So what I do I do now? How do I overcome this so that I don't ever inadvertently teach my children that they aren't good enough? Kids can be so cruel, I know that it's so important to show our girls how much they have to offer the world. I want them to feel as beautiful as I see them.I want them to learn that physical perfection isn't necessary to love yourself. I want them to take care of themselves, because it's healthy, not because they are comparing themselves to some unattainable image they see in the media. I want Olive to embrace her physical differences that make her unique, to never feel jilted because she is 'different.' Basically, I want them to be all the things that I can't seem to become myself.
5 days ago