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My Body

I used to hate my body. I used to cringe when I looked in the mirror. I used to avoid my reflection from the neck down. I used to find outfits that would sufficiently hide my "bad" spots - my tummy, arms, and entire upper body. I can remember days when I would try on top after top looking for something I felt halfway decent wearing; something that hid the fat that I shouldn't have. I was looking for something that made me feel halfway acceptable. At the time I didn't know that would never happen. Most times I would end up standing in a pile of clothes crying my eyes out. I didn't know the clothes would never help. I didn't know that I needed to learn how to accept myself first. I didn't know it was an inside job.

I didn't talk very nice to my body or about my body. I can remember grabbing chunks of fat and saying things like "I wish I could cut this off". I can remember thinking thoughts like "nobody will ever love this body", and "you are too fat".

I can remember wanting to hide, cover up, or stay home because it was easier. I can remember all the diets, all the strict meal plans (no cheating), all the calories, points, and portions counted. All of this was in an attempt to shrink this body and make the fat go away. In my mind I wasn't worthy. I wasn't good enough for anyone or anything because of my body, because I was too fat. I can remember punishing my body with insane workouts believing that they were helping. My body hated them.

When I was a little girl I can remember having thoughts that family members didn't like me because I was big. I was always bigger than the other kids. Those thoughts spread into adulthood. I considered myself to be less than, and not good enough in the eyes of others.

I treated my body in horrible ways. I was the very worst bully to the beautiful vessel that carries me through life. I called it names. I wouldn't look at it. I tormented it. I starved it. I stuffed it. I've been in some of the darkest places because of the way I thought about my body.

Now, a page has turned. A new chapter has started. I have completely transformed the way I I think about my body, which has changed the way I feel about my body, and the way I look at my body.

Bottom line, I think different thoughts about my body. I like my curves. I even like my uneven breasts, which look different after cancer. My body is a source of strength. My body has given life, and in many ways has saved my own. I appreciate my body. I am grateful for all the parts, even the ones that hold additional fat. I like my body. Some days I can even say that I love my body. I can look at all of me in the mirror and smile, even when I'm completely naked. I don't cringe. I don't say nasty things. I don't want to cut anything off. I do want to remove some of the extra weight I carry, and that's okay. That desire is coming from a totally different place. It comes from love, not hate. I don't worry about what other people think of me, because I know that it's none of my business. The thoughts they think are about them, not me. I feel different about me because of the new thoughts I have about my body, and about my fat.

I didn't get to this new place overnight. It didn't take a few months. It's taken years to get to a place of peace with my body. I didn't do it alone. I have worked with some of the best coaches in the business. I'm still doing the work. It's been hard, mental work. I had to unwind decades of conditioning. I stood face to face with some of my deepest, darkest demons. I shined a bright light on those places inside that I kept stuffed down and hidden. I brought them to the surface to be acknowledged, to be seen, and heard. Many times I wanted to give up. I thought about taking the easy road to drop pounds quick - go on another diet, start up another restrictive meal plan, or just begin counting calories or points again. None of those options would have helped me build the relationship I have with my body today. They're not designed to do that. They're not created for permanent change.

I'm still getting to know my body after years of hate and neglect. I'm starting to love this time. My body is finally becoming the priority she was always meant to be. I celebrate her now. I believe that's the way it was intended to be, no matter what. That feels really good. I would do it all over again in a heartbeat. There's no going back from here. My body is my temple, today and always. xo

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