I read a lot of great blogs.
I read blogs devoted to running and eating well. I get inspired. I read blogs devoted to being curvy or plus sized. It makes me appreciate my well endowed chest and feel confident for wearing figure hugging wrap dress.
Reading blogs about curvy plus sized women makes me think maybe I should spend less time and energy worrying about fitting into a size 6 dress, working out and more time finding figure flattering outfits and learning the great art of cheek contouring. I mean, why fight genetics? Why struggle, why not just embrace the inevitable?
I have had this conversation with a pal of mine, Lauren. Lauren is a mother of 2 adorable boys. She despises exercise and loves a good piece of chocolate. We became instant friends over our quirky senses of humor and love of pinot noir. Our mutual love of food and hatred for physical affection is what really has bonded us, though.
Lauren and I are serial dieters. One week we are using myfitnesspal and eating Atkins approved cheese. The following week we are mowing down on tamales discussing the pros of being curvy and ways to embrace it.
The thing is, I am not “plus sized”. I have thin arms, shapely legs, an Irish (no) ass… I have this pot belly. I mean to be fair I have love handles, flabby triceps and thighs but really it is my stomach that holds all the excess
I think when people look at me they see an average woman. Not thin. Not fat. I am truly average, a fact I have been aware of since I won the superlative for being “The Most Typical 6th Grader” at Memorial Middle school in 1998. (What kind of a lame ass award is that anyway? How can you be the MOST average? That is some kind of mean oxymoron…)
Back to the point, I feel like I do not truly fit into either of these communities that I spend oso many hours reading about and identifying with. I see athletic looking women, running in sports bras and running skorts looking absolutely adorable. Then I’ll go to my next blog where I see a woman who is a size 16, gorgeous, curvy and confident. I seem to be somewhere in between these 2 and I think I need to be okay with that. Again, that gray area I struggle with.
I feel so fortunate that I have role models like Brittanyherself and Monica from runeatandreapeat. Both women who are proud of their bodies, struggle with the same body image issues that I struggle with, that you struggle with… And they put themselves out there to make me feel more comfortable in my own skin, they are working in their own and different ways to put an end to stereotypes of what a real woman is supposed to look like and focus on body acceptance.
And to be perfectly honest, I am not accepting of my body. I don’t see it as this mystical vehicle that has carried me hundreds of miles, has run 3 half marathons and countless 5ks and 10ks, supports my freakishly small head, that heals and has the capability to carry wee babies inside (even feed them, weird!) Instead, if I somehow catch myself in the mirror not sucking it in and standing up straight I get grossed out. When I am doing crunches and I glance down at the fat rolls, I feel disconnected from my body- like that can’t be part of me? I wish I loved my curves, I wish I felt comfortable enough to wear a bikini let alone post a photo of me in a bikini.
I am working on it though.