When I look at my body, I don’t see love. I see the carrots I should be eating for lunch, the daily workouts I should be doing, the endless weight repetitions, the strict calorie intake I should be monitoring. I don’t remember the last time I looked in the mirror and was happy with my body.
Then I realized that hating my body is exhausting.
I look in the mirror every single day, and every day the little voice says, “My arms need toning, I wish I could zap that back fat, my kneecaps have too much fat on them.” These images are real to me and to so many other women, despite what we actually look like.
I know because we talk about it. Way more than we should.
And so the cycle continues. I promise to eat healthier, to exercise more. But the thing is, I love eating and I just can’t say the same for exercising. But I DO eat healthy, and I DO try to make exercise a daily part of my life, and somehow it’s never enough to reflect a body I want to see. It’s not that I have a severe hatred every time I look in the mirror. It’s just the little things–avoiding bright lights (and cursing every store that puts them in their dressing rooms), eating ice cream and pinching my stomach afterward, finding the perfect pair of jeans to cover my hips.
The problem is that no matter how much I exercise or eat healthy, the voice still speaks. So just for one day, I would like to look at my body after enjoying a glass of wine or nachos and see love. To look at my body after a long walk and see accomplishment instead of all that’s left to go. To love and appreciate my body for all that it is instead of seeing everything it’s not. To accept that my shape is beautiful, even if it’s not aligned with the media and celebrity definitions. This seems like the hardest thing in the world, but maybe not harder than hearing that little voice in the back of my mind every single day.
I hope that maybe one day this week, month, or even year, you’ll look in the mirror and see love. I promise I’m trying too.
PS – For more, check out one of my favorite organizations, I Am That Girl.