I stumbled upon this entry today:
I thought it was a pretty good read. It was a good reminder to not let peer pressure or trends decide what is ideal for my body.
Two thoughts though –
1. In earlier times, plumpness was a sign of health or abundance. It was good to see one well fed and healthy. Thin might have been interpreted as underfed, or possibly not well.
2. The passages mentioned in the Bible are from a lover to his love. This is an intimate portrait he paints. In the same way, every man and woman has their own idea of what is lovely in the sense of personal preference.
Some may enjoy shorter, taller, thinner, larger…it’s not a one size fit all guide. And ultimately, other people’s preferences should not sway one’s opinion of self.
“How do you like you?” I want that question to be enough.
I want to be sensitive to ladies who have the opposite problem I do. I tack weight on easily…some are unable to gain despite a healthful diet. I’m on the other side of the issue, but I get it. And while the world may cast different labels and judgements on us based on our sizes, the root of the above article brings up a good point: how do we let cultural idealism define our personal goals? If we let the ideals in, are they being harmful?
For me personally, these struggles come in the form of gym/health culture and fashion. I want to be physically conditioned for the benefit of strength and toning, not for show. I struggle with the model-type fitness gurus on social media teaching me new workout moves. I know that if I “keep it real” with myself I know I want to look like them but also that my results will probably entail loose skin and stretch marks. I look at fashion magazines and feel like I’ll never find myself at a size small enough to “pull off” a certain look or heck, even fit the sizes they carry. I’ll toss $100 at the health store pretending organic this and nutritional that will magically transform me because it’s “healthy.” But those aren’t where my focus needs to be. So, my personal resolve was to stop fashion magazine subscriptions and look for more realistic health and fitness gurus on youtube rather than stick to just top names in the fitness world.
When I’m honest with myself and ask, “How do you like you?” What do I see?
I see a 180 pound gal, not the 125-135 I should be according to BMI. I see myself dressing relatively the same because I like comfortable fashion and more modest options. I don’t see prominent abs or a body built for a fashion magazine. I just see a feeling of efficiency and contentment from hard work.
And that’s when I remind myself, “Laura, that’s where you want to be. That’s where you like you.”