Have you ever been out to dinner and decided to order something healthy only to be questioned about what diet you are on? It seems people automatically assume that if you are eating healthy you are on a diet.
Our society is so driven by appearance that people seem to not even understand the point in eating healthy to feel good. Surely if you are out to eat and you choose to eat something healthy you MUST be on a diet trying to lose weight.
Health is about so much more than appearance. Feeling good, having energy, and fueling my body properly, matter so much more to me than the way I look. I know how to eat to lose weight. I did it for years, but it’s not what makes my body feel good.
Eating intuitively, meaning, stopping when I’m full and starting when I’m hungry has radically changed my life. It’s such common sense, but after years of dieting I convinced myself my own body did not know how to do this. I convinced myself I needed to be on a diet that told me when to stop eating and when to start eating. This just is not the case.
As a society we’ve got to start trusting our bodies again, fueling them with whole foods, and watching the amazing transformation that happens. I’m no where near my skinniest and that’s ok! My health and energy are so much more important to me than being thin. Showing my daughter it’s ok to eat when she’s hungry and knowing how to stop when she’s full is so much more important to me than being thin. Knowing that I’m fueling my body with foods that are going to help it stay healthy for years to come is so much more important to me than being thin.
My wish for our society is that we can shift our focus from the outside of our bodies to the inside of our bodies! We should strive for mental, emotional, and physical health. Often times our “diet” steals all three of these from us.
I define body positivity as embracing and loving your body regardless of how it looks. Most of us do not have what society would consider the “perfect” body, and because of that we are left to feel like we should spend our time and energy creating the “perfect” body.
One day I made the decision to stop obsessing over creating the so called “perfect” body and simply embraced my body for what it is, and it was the best decision of my life. I no longer spend the majority of my time or energy on something that really doesn’t deserve my attention. I can now focus on raising my daughter and serving my family instead of trying to create something that rarely exists.
I came to realize through being everything from a size zero to a size 10 that until I learned to love my body for what it was; I was not going to be happy with it regardless of the size. When I was in the midst of my obsession over creating the “perfect” body, like many, I had a number in mind that I wanted to see on the scale. To my surprise, when I reached that number on the scale, I still wasn’t happy with the image I saw in the mirror. This was because until I learned to love my body for what it was, right where it was, I could not be happy with what I saw in the mirror.
Since then, I have learned to love my body for what it does, not only for how it looks. This body grew and birthed my amazing daughter. This body continues to provide her nourishment. This body gets out of bed each morning and is able to care for her throughout the day. This body deserves my love and respect regardless of the number on the scale.
This is something I will always have to remind myself of, because society does not encourage this way of thinking. There are still times I look in the mirror or see a picture, and I am not happy with the body I see. That is until I remember just how wonderful this body is, and how much it has provided and continues to provide for me.
My journey to becoming a body positive mom is an ongoing one, but I have come a long way from where I once was and for that I am grateful. I am new to this mommy thing as my daughter is only 5 months old, but from the minute I found out I was expecting a baby girl I was bound and determined to have her grow up in a body positive environment.
I learned so much about my body and grew to love it more than ever throughout my pregnancy. I learned to actually trust my body, something I realized I had stopped doing years ago. Before becoming pregnant, I no longer thought my body knew how to tell me when it was hungry or when it was full. I thought I needed a diet plan to tell me those things. During my pregnancy I made up my mind to trust and listen to my body. I obviously wanted to ensure my child was receiving all the nutrients she needed, so I listened. When I felt hungry I ate and when I felt full I stopped (most of the time). I learned that it was ok to listen to the cues my body was giving me, and through that I learned to trust my body again.
My body treated me well throughout my pregnancy, and the day my daughter was born I saw just how amazing my body truly was. I laid eyes on the most perfect baby girl and knew as her mom it was my responsibility to ensure she grew up loving and trusting her body. I didn’t want her to go through the struggles I went through to get to this place of trusting my body again. I wanted her to know from day one that she is perfectly and wonderfully made and for her to never doubt that.
In this society that is hard to achieve. Society wants to tell us our bodies aren’t enough the way they are. We need to constantly be striving to change them or “fix” them. I know this journey will have its up and downs, but I also know I am not going to give up on loving and trusting my body, and I want to raise a daughter who feels the same way.