Q: I’ve read about women thinking of their stretch marks as […]
Q: I’ve read about women thinking of their stretch marks as tiger stripes and their sagging tummies as reminders of the miracles they grew, but when I look in the mirror, I just feel unattractive and ready to crawl into a hole. I’m worried if I don’t get my body back, I might never get my confidence back. Help!
A: When showering after the birth of my first child, Oliver, I looked down at what had been my glorious, beautiful bump and was confronted with a jelly belly that looked nothing like the tummy I had grown to love so deeply during my pregnancy. It was the first of many “I hate how my body looks” moments that followed. But I went from loathing my body to loving it, and you can, too.
What does it feel like to love my body unconditionally—rolls, lumps, bumps, stretch marks and all? Well, if you could hear me right now, I am letting out a glorious “Woohoo!” with an accompanying fist pump. It feels joyous, free, liberating and ecstatic. It was hard to believe that just a few short years ago I was lying on the bathroom floor, crying and not wanting to see the world, hating every inch of my “damaged” body.
The moment I learned to unconditionally cherish my body, I decided to start a movement—the Body Image Movement—to teach women the value and power of loving their bodies from the inside out. I made it to the other side, from body hater to lover, and the exciting news for you is that you have access to change as well.
Here are three things you can do today to embrace your body:
1. Acknowledge the fact that your body is not an ornament; it is the vehicle to your dreams.
2. Stop fighting and defying age. Despite what “they” tell you, the body is designed to naturally evolve—and that is OK.
3. Give yourself a high five! You have created—or are creating—a child! That is a miracle in itself. When I look in the mirror and look at my breasts, I don’t hate how they look but appreciate what they have done … they have provided more than 4,000 meals to my children!
— Taryn Brumfitt, mom of three, founder of The Body Image Movement and author of Embrace: My Story from Body Loather to Body Lover