Wednesday, February 11, 2015

Dear Body, A Love Letter

This is the season of love for the romantics.  Some will give chocolates in heart shaped boxes, red roses and teddy bears to prove their love.  Others will take the big leap getting engaged and promising to love each other through sickness and health, richer or poorer, till death they do part. The big commitment.

Well, I've decided that I'm going to take the plunge as well.  No, no, not that plunge.  I'm married.  Seventeen years in.  Hi Hubby!  No, my plunge is a commitment to embrace my body.  To love my body just as it is. See, I only realized in my forties, that I suffered from low body confidence and I was not conscious of the fact of not being happy with my body in general.   I am convinced that all the years of criticism and ridicule by family and peers together culture and media bombardment has had a subliminal effect on me.

From young, it seemed that everyone wanted to talk about my physical appearance.  Even when the comments were good they seemed to be indicating that something else was wrong.  My height for my age, my pretty complexion (Check my About Me pic out.  Can you believe that I believed until about four years ago that I was dark complexioned?) The size of my breast and upper arms that come from Grandma.   My flat butt.  Gorgeous legs with duck feet. Beautiful head of hair with a moon forehead. Stunning smile, but you show too much gums. And what is up with the people who like to commentate on how fat you are getting and then when you start loosing weight, you are looking sickly. LOL!  Looking back at this barrage of constant labeling, comparing and shaming left me thinking that physically I was lacking a something.

Did I think I was attractive?  Yes, I did, but I will admit that it was more about the  quality of person I thought I was than how I looked.  For those reading this post that know me personally, probably can't believe I had these issues because I carried myself so confidently.  I am confident, sexy and brilliant and all that goes with it.  I just had some body image issues and I was not at peace with a portion of myself.

So why this post and Love Letter to my body?  Now that I am aware of the breach I want to embrace all of me.  The total package, mind, body and spirit.  Not because 100 plus pounds are gone (but losing the weight did bring attention to the fact that the issue was not the weight), nor when the last 70 leave but right now.

Two things happened that brought awareness to my state and changed my vantage point:
  1. At 338 lbs, I did not know that I had the mental capacity to change my physical circumstances. Discovering that I had the power, learning to use it and watching my body respond has been an amazing discovery and experience. 
  2. Secondly, After facing infertility with obesity and a geriatric pregnancy (as they called it lol wow! Where is the bucket of ice cream?) working against me, I conceived, carried full term and birthed my one and only.  Watching my body do what it had been told it could not and would not do was phenomenal.  My body did that.  
These two events seemed to break a spell, a paradigm, a belief system concocted by others and embraced by me.  It was these two events which have awakened a greater purpose for me within my body which supersede the ringing comments and my own thoughts from yesteryear.  The other voices no longer matter.  I have another more meaningful and impacting experience within me. So when I look in the mirror, I see me now.  The real me and I can honestly say, I look good.  Thank you Body.


In the spirit of the season, do you want to write your own love letter to your beloved? You can find some great tips here and here.

**Update** This exercise proved to be fruitful and so enlightening for me that I have decided to do it each year. Dear Body, A Love Letter Vol. 2


You might find this post at any of these parties!
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Do you or have you had a disconnect with your body and are working to or have overcome it? Leave a comment a let me know how you are working it out.


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31 comments :

  1. So inspiring! Congrats on your marriage and birth of your child! It is important to ignore others negative influences and encourage self love and taking care of our bodies.

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  2. Thank you for sharing such a personal story. You are very inspiring. You certainly have picked a fabulous Valentine!

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  3. Oh my gosh, girl I was nodding my head all over the place, especially at "Stunning smile, but you show too much gums"...up until recently I've been subconcious of this my whole life. I've also always had body issues with my height and other things. Thank you so much for being so transparent. So inspiring to hear your story so congrats and kudos all around :)

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    1. Thanks Christine :). Glad you are finding ways to move past the issues.

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  4. Such an inspirational post, enjoy your Valentines!
    Mackenzie Glanville
    Reflectionsfromme.com

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  5. Love this post and brava to you. I think we all have our things with our bodies but how freeing it is to just love her and be grateful for her and all that she endures and survives and we endure and survive

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    1. Thank you and thank you Goody. Nothing like finding peace. Even peace that you did not know was missing.

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  6. Love love love this post! You are right on so many levels….society as a whole puts way to much emphasis on our bodies, but at the end of the WE are in control of our own happiness. Blessings to you and your one & only

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    1. So glad you loved it Latoya. I added you to my fan page. See you around.

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  7. I got all teary eyed reading this, such a great inspiring journey you have been on, Gina! I absolutely love this love letter to our body because we really can be so critical of our flaws and forgot to be grateful of how amazing our body really is.

    Thank you so much for linking up with us!

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    1. Maureen, thanks so much for reading the post and finding a connection. It is interesting how when we are going through it, we feel so alone, but later we find that we were not the only one that had to travel that road.

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  8. My sweet Gina,
    You always bring me to tears! Oh. Look how awesome God is. No one in the world can change you or your circumstances but you, your faith and your higher power. Thank you for sharing your journey. You are beautiful and you continue to inspire me.

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    1. MJ..... don't do it to me! Sigh, thank you for those kind sentiments and yes, you are right God Is Awesome!

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  9. This was such a great. Congrats on all you've been able to achieve. Thank you for so honest and open because we all face "issues" that we brush under the carpet.

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  10. You are so friggin amazing! I love writing letters to myself, it's one of the most profound activities you can do. Thank you for having the courage to share your story and help others share theirs! xo -Cass

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    1. Yes, Cassandra, seeing the letters years after you wrote them is also pretty amazing.

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  11. This is very inspiring! Thanks for sharing at Weekend-Wind-Down Party! Happy Monday!

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  12. On my journey of discovery and learning to love my pancake (flat butt) just as it is! After all, if I don't love & appreciate myself completely how can I expect anyone else to? Thank you for having the courage to share your story. Peace, Joni

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    1. Joni you are so right. We have to love ourselves first. Thanks for sharing!

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  13. Lovely and pure. Pinned this to Pinterst. Inspiring for others.

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  14. Love love love!!!! What an amazingstory! Thank you for sharing! !! I think I am going to write my love letter to my body today! Thanks!


    -Tamieka@fitballingrunningmom

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    1. Thanks so much Tamieka. I am so glad you were able to connect with my story. The exercise was so effective for me I decided to write a letter each year. If you are interested Dear Body, A love Letter Vol 2 is now live on the blog. Have c great day.

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  15. Will be featuring this post on my Tuesday Talk party next week. Nice work!

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  16. I'll be sharing your letter on Instagram tomorrow featuring Tuesday Talk linkup. Credits will go to you...

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    1. This is so awesome and thank you for being so supportive. Thanks so much. You are also teaching me a thing or two about promoting link ups!

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