I love my body. Am I ashamed to admit that? Not really. My body has been through hell and back with me, and it’s stood up to each and every beating I’ve given it. I am proud to be in a body that has lived through my life, helping to morph me into the person I am today.
It ran with me during soccer games, withholding a severe hamstring injury. It jumped and lunged with me during volleyball games, even though my wrist remained constantly sprained. It kept me afloat during swim meets, while battling a few scary heart arrhythmias. It danced with me, tossed flags with me, and wore beautiful costumes during colorguard competitions.
It got tackled by a former NFL player at a BSU retreat. It got body slammed by the much beloved former LSU quarterback, Matt Mauck. It’s withheld no less than eight sets of stitches, at least two possible fractures, and an inoperable cartilage tear.
It has been overseas and seen the castles in Germany. It has climbed no less than two thousand steps in the majestic towers of Florence.
It refused to die during an outpatient procedure which resulted in pancreatitis.
It stayed alive when I tried to kill it with anorexia.
It proudly birthed my beautiful Tiny Tot, and mourned the loss of miscarriage. It has saved my tiny human from countless daredevil events, and treasured every tiny snuggle. It has wiped tears, vomit, snot, and poop. It has read countless books in millions of voices, and sung endless songs in perfect tone-deaf pitch.
And even though it is now slightly disabled, it refuses to give up on all that my mind can perceive. So it has stood by me in the gym, and taken brutal workouts for strength training and personal health.
My body serves me well, even though it gets put through the wringer on a daily basis.
Therefore, my body is my own, not subject to other people’s disdain. My body cannot be controlled by outside forces when I go to the beach in a bikini, or when I walk the boardwalk in a pretty sundress. My body doesn’t care if someone else’s husband glances its way, and riles a woman who feels the need to control her husband’s every waking glance.
My body is my own. Sure, it limps on occasion, it doesn’t have much cleavage to boast about. It gets annoyed at finding long enough jeans, or appropriately-lengthed dresses. But, those are my problems, those are my personal struggles. I cannot control other people, I can only control myself and my own happiness.
Therefore, I do not get jealous over other women–and believe me, I could easily move in that direction. I’m not angry over women who can bend, skip, twist, hop, jump, and walk downstairs, simply because I cannot. I’m not angry at women who made their marriage last when I did not, and have more children than I do–though I wish for marriage and extra tiny people in my life. I’m not bitter that other women have larger chests, cuter butts, smaller thighs, or six-pack abs. I was born in my frame; I have been working for my body.
I help my body, for my life, by myself.
So, why do I have to stumble across blogs that seem to blame me for insecurities in someone else’s body? Why do I have to take a moment out of my life to be chastised for another woman’s fears about her own inadequacy?
Why should I be ashamed to wear my bikini on the beach?
This goes far beyond worry about a husband looking at a buxom bikini-clad female. It delves into the heart of women who refuse to cherish the body they’ve been given. That God-given body which has served them well in life. The body which has birthed children, nurtured wounds, and given love.
It’s time that we, as women, stop playing the blame game and start recognizing that this body we have been given is a testament to the life we live. How we treat it depends on how it treats us, and how much it can withstand.
But at the end of the day, it is the body which will take us through life, and it deserves to be loved.