I never like to start the week on a heavy note. However, I thought it was about time that I sat down to have an honest chat about battling negative body image.
If you caught last week’s confessions or follow me on Instagram, then these recent personal difficulties shouldn’t come as a surprise. I’ve mentioned or alluded to body image issues on more than one occasion as of late. I’m struggling. Hard. Where did these feelings come from, or how did they start? That’s what everybody keeps asking me that I’ve shared this with, and they’re great questions. I just wish I had the answers! I literally feel like I woke up one morning and decided to not like the way that I look.
In the mirror, all I see is flaws and problems. My round face, chubby upper arms and thighs, curvier-than-ever hips. I get that other people don’t necessarily see what I see and that I more than likely have a distorted view of myself. That doesn’t make it any easier to ignore, though.
Here’s the thing. If you’ve known me for any length of time then it’s pretty easy to figure out that I’m a fairly confident person. I don’t mean that in an obnoxious, I’m-so-great sort of way. I’ve always just been comfortable in my own skin – with who I am inside and out and not caring what others think or say. So, imagine how I might feel with my confidence being shaken to my core for no apparent reason.
I don’t feel like myself at all. The way I berate my appearance while looking in the mirror. Convincing myself that nothing fits or looks right on my body. Not even making attempts to do my hair or makeup because I think that it won’t make a difference. I barely can accept a compliment from Ryan! If he tells me I’m beautiful, I can list 10 reasons why I think he’s lying. (He’s not, of course. If there’s one truth in life that I can hold onto it’s that Ryan will love me at my absolute best and worst). It’s all to the point where most days I just want to wear sweatpants and call it a day. That’s all that apparently fits and looks okay on me anyways, right? I always have taken pride in my appearance and how I present myself, but these days nothing is doing it for me. If I don’t feel like I look good then I’m sure as hell not going to try and pretend to look good to please someone else.
This is so not me. I even feel ridiculous typing out these thoughts.
So, where do I go from here? I’m taking it one day at a time, trying to figure out my triggers and what makes me feel better. So far, the gym/running is my ultimate stress reliever. Running proves to me that my body is stronger and more in-shape than I give it credit for. Slowly, I hope that will help me love my body again and ultimately, myself. The truth is that I would love nothing more than to get pregnant in the near future, but I never ever want my child to have these same feelings. So, I need to get my shit together so I can be a role model and positive influence of what it means to be okay with what you look like.
If you made it to the end of this post, thanks for sticking with me for an honest chat about battling negative body image. Personal feelings such as these are something I’m always hesitant to share, but I never want to act one way if I’m feeling the complete opposite. Plus, I think it’s important to stay real and transparent. I know that many of us deal with similar issues, especially in this social media-driven world. My hope is that by being open about my struggles, you, too know that you’re not alone and we can talk and help each other out.