Tuesday, January 20, 2015

Body Image on Pinterest

I know I'm supposed to be blogging about my bathroom, but this topic's been on my mind lately and now I've got something to say. Check back to see inside my bathroom cabinets tomorrow!

I just made a Pinterest board of photos that'll serve me a dose of reality when I need it. Perhaps daily, for now. People with adrenal fatigue can't lose weight. Cannot. If they diet, they either maintain their weight or gain. Not knowing this, I sacrificed my lifelong vow to never count calories not last summer, but the summer before. Here's how it happened.

It was August and the evening was awash in warm sunlight while we drove to Red Robin for date night. We were going there so I could eat salad and Brian could have something more, um, substantial. That's when I spied a runner from my car window. Her skin was the color of golden grahams and she wore only a sports bra and lime shorts. She was swift, moving her toned arms and legs so efficiently she seemed to glide over the sidewalk instead of pounding it. Her back glistened with sweat and as we passed her, I did a one-eighty to see the other side. Crap. Her abs came down to the v-thing I've mostly seen on men. 

My night was ruined. All my angst over trying to lose the "last five pounds" spewed forth. (This was not a shifting "last five pounds," like, I thought I'd be happy and then I just wanted to lose five more. It took me 2.5 years to lose my baby weight and nine months later, we renovated our home. During the stress of those months, I gained five pounds.) I didn't roll down my window and scream at the runner, and for that I felt very grown-up, but my poor husband spent the rest of the night listening to me vent. He finally said, "Well, if you've never tried calorie counting, I really like doing it with the app on my phone." So I started. I was supposed to be my ideal weight in no time. I ate a 1200 calorie diet and while my weight didn't change, I thought, "Maybe next month" and kept going. For a year. I hesitate to admit this because I'm afraid some zealous, overachievers (like my former self) may mistakenly admire me. This was BAD for my health. And I did it for twelve months.

I took this a while ago, of my stretch marks and sag,
little knowing how much my insides were struggling
When I was diagnosed with adrenal fatigue in October, I finally got it. I went off my diet and gained five pounds, knowing that for now, my struggling body needs it. Or thinks it does. Either way, I'm not going to deprive it of nutrition while it's trying to get better. So here I sit, ten pounds more than my favorite (post baby) weight. When I'm getting ready, I'll put something on only to take it off because it's too small. I forget and shop in the wrong size shirts (not even trying pants right now) and find myself straight-jacketed in a small in the dressing room. I can get a little sad. SO...

I made a Pinterest board of real people. Also, some examples of the marketing people's efforts to skew reality. Even the super models aren't super enough. They have to trim them down. If you can relate, take a peak at my board. This is my description for it, which Pinterest said was too long:




On a sliding scale, I find myself snuggled up to Idealism on a regular basis, and my version of a body "ideal" is skewed by misinformation. We're bombarded with images of skinny women with glossy hair and flawless skin even if we avoid beauty magazines. It starts to feel like, if all of them can hack it, why can't I? It's not real. In countries where nudity's more acceptable, people see what real bodies look like regularly. Here, the expectation is we hide our flaws out of courtesy for others, suggesting "flaws" are shameful or nauseating. Well that nauseates me, especially since I know I've felt grossed out by parts of my self -- my hard-working, self-sacrificing body that does its best to meet every demand it encounters. We've got to stop the hate. We've got to move past mere acceptance and learn to LOVE our bodies. They are worthy -- stretch marks, unwanted hair, sags and all. Peace out, hate. I've climbed on the love train and I'm hangin' on for dear life. 

You're beautiful. Yes, you.


5 comments:

  1. I see a comfy home for not one but TWO babies!! Nice job cookin' those babies body! :) Love this post!

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    1. Indeed. Our bodies are remarkable in so many ways the media doesn't bother to remark about! :)

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  2. Fabulous post. Like most women, I am rarely satisfied with my body, when I should be celebrating her. All she wants is to be healthy, and that's what she deserves. You inspired me to start a body board too. Thanks, Kendra!

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  3. Great post! It is so sad that we women are so hostile against our bodies. Thank you for being open and share your picture. We need more love for ourselves.

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