We have one body to carry us around through out our lives.
As a younger woman I struggled with that body. My body image was all about needing to change myself. I wanted my body to be something that my body was not meant to be.
I was always the big boned girl. Pleasantly plump, my father used to say.
My friends were tiny petite women, and around them I always felt big.
I carried this with with me all my life. We do that. We carry those harmless words and ideas from childhood around with us like gospel and they form us and shape us.
One day when I was in my late thirties I told one of those petite friends how I felt about myself. Basically I told her that I always felt a bit big and slovenly. She looked at me and said,"That must be awful.".
It was at that moment that I came to a realization that it was awful. I did not have to feel that way. I needed to change the way I think about myself. I needed to treat myself more kindly.
It was a sudden realization in my mid to late thirties. That was the day that I began to change the way I thought about myself.
It did not give me a license to eat more ice cream and chips, though I do that sometimes. It gave me a license to exercise more. To buy nice clothes that fit well. It gave me a license to be thankful for what I was given. To be respectful of it, and to age with it gracefully.
I stopped thinking about sizes and began to walk more. I have not said the word diet since but I have become much better about watching what I eat. I treat my body like I am lucky to have it.
Really taking care of our bodies means we have to love them because real caring always starts with love.