I'm not a size two.
Or even a six, or eight.
When I jump, things jiggle. A lot of things.
Several years ago, I was born two months early and weighed a whopping four pounds five ounces. My mother said I looked like a kitten. That I could fit in her hand. That I was tiny. But something happened. I got bigger. I grew. Until one day, I looked in the mirror and I was a twelve year old butterball.
The interesting part about bad body image is that you aren't born with it. Babies don't look down at their chubby thighs and snivel about how roly-poly they are. They don't care if their thighs chafe. Likewise to looking good. Babies don't pride themselves on how well-defined their arms are, or the poutiness of their lips.
Body image, self confidence, and the lack there of, is learned. It is moulded by the interactions we have with the world around us. Whether we want to admit it or not, we are influenced by what we read, watch and listen to. If we weren't advertising wouldn't be a multi billion dollar industry and name brands would cease to exist.
Thinking back on it, I wouldn't have known I was fat if not for the names my brothers and certain kids in elementary school called me. At first, I thought they were mistaken. Surely, I wasn't fat. I mean, they must have got it wrong. Except, then I started looking at myself. The discomfort and shame started out mildly, but grew over time. When I reached high school, and the deathly period of puberty was in full swing, things changed. I was no longer slightly put off by my ratty hair, Buddha belly and weird little nose. I was obsessed with them. My flaws, or more accurately, my perceived flaws, consumed me. I became this insecure little creature who pulled herself apart every time she passed a mirror. My reflection made me flinch. And I constantly took note of the differences between myself and the other girls prancing down the halls.
That's a word people don't often use when they talk about what they look like or how they are. There is mental health and physical health. And I've been wondering how mentally healthy this world we live in is. Sometimes it feels like people are never happy with themselves. Everywhere we turn there is pressure to look better, be thinner, appear younger. But it isn't healthy. Our fixation on this ridiculous idea of what beauty is baffles me. Because this outside of ours, it's just a shell. And I am a firm believer that beauty shines through. If you're pretty on the inside it will reflect in your eyes, your smile, and the lines on your face.
Unrealistic expectations. The media and other people put them on us, but that pales in comparison to what we expect of ourselves. We are our own worst enemies. We pick and nit and agonize over the most ridiculous things. The shape of our eyes, length of our hair, curve of our smile, straightness of our teeth, and the list goes on. In the end, it doesn't matter where our insecurities and self doubt come from, or even what they are. We have to take responsibility for how they overrun our lives, how we let them rule us. More importantly, we need to ensure they don't ruin our futures.
In order for this to happen, we have to let go. Let go of what we hate about ourselves. Let go of what we find ugly. Let go of the expectations we feel the world places on us. And let go of our fear. Because it all comes down to the fear of being found ugly. Unworthy. Unwelcome. And unwanted.
So, let go. For the sake of sexy times.
There is no room for self-conciousness when you're knocking boots. There, I said it.
Back in the day, when I was a green young thing eager to get some experience and put a couple notches on my headboard, I was horribly self concious. The thought of being naked on my own was enough to freak me out. Don't even get me started on being naked with someone. Meditation and calming scents were needed. In the early years of my adventures, I had a constant monologue in my head about what the other person was seeing or thinking. Most of it revolved around my thighs. My thighs were out of control. Actually, my thighs are out of control. Not were. I mean, I haven't tamed them. They are nearly as rebellious as my arse.
Regardless, sexy times were not sexy for me. They were nerve-racking, uncomfortable, and, while I hate to admit it, unsatisfactory. Simply put, you can't enjoy the moment if you're thinking, "Does he notice the way my tummy jiggles? Is this angle flattering? Oh, God, is that what I look like? Who put that mirror there? Am I being punked? That's not me. That can't be me." Trust me. I was a mood killer.
The truth of the matter is, these days I can't be bothered to waste time and energy worrying about how jiggly my bits are. And being naked is one of my most favourite things to be. Especially with the right company. It isn't that I don't have frustrating moments of self doubt or questionable self-esteem from time-to-time. I do. But for the most part, whatever. Maybe it's because I know my heart is drop-dead gorgeous, but I've let go of my worry and fear, my crippling lack of confidence. Mostly for the sake of sexy times.
But also because I'm happy and healthy. I'm going to enjoy these moments as long as these moments are around to be enjoyed. I refuse to let my thighs stand in the way.