by Olivia Garcia
Note: This post originally appeared on learning.nourishing.overcoming and has been cross-posted with permission.
I’d like to say you consumed 80% of my life up until this point.
Spending countless hours in front of a mirror picking out all my flaws.
Running that extra mile to reach an ideal size.
Doing an unrealistic amount of ab workouts to get a flat stomach.
Cutting out liquid calories because they are a waste of calories.
Wearing over-sized clothing because my body wasn’t perfect.
Saying no to sweets or unhealthy food because they had too many calories.
Not allowing myself to wear tank tops because my arms weren’t muscular enough.
Going through phases of wearing makeup and then to none at all.
Secretly crying because all I wanted was to be beautiful.
Constantly comparing myself to girls ‘more beautiful’ than me.
Hating every single thing about myself possible.
Most days, I have found myself spiraling in and out of perceived happiness. Smiling in attempt to mask the hatred I had for myself, but behind closed doors my eyes burned with disgust for everything I perceived as a flaw.
Around nine years old I remember feeling ‘fat’ for the first time and developing acne at around 11-12 killed about every ounce of confidence I had.
From then on I was in a constant attempt to change my appearance and when I couldn’t always change the things I didn’t like, I became someone else without even realizing it.
I wasn’t sure of who I was.
I wasn’t happy.
I was insecure.
I think it’s so common to believe girls feeling insecure is normal, but I don’t see anything normal about it.
Empowering women to be confident and strong, that should be normal.
Teaching women to love themselves, that should be normal.
I’ll be honest, sitting at x lbs, I’m not happy, but at x lbs I wasn’t happy either.
I’m not happy with my acne scars, but I know people with perfect skin who aren’t happy either.
I’m not happy with my body, but truthfully I haven’t met one person who was 100% happy with their own.
I am imperfect. Just like everyone else.
And that’s okay.
So, here’s to my insecurities.
I love exercising, but here’s to running because I love it, not to burn an extra xxx calories.
I may not have a perfectly flat stomach, but one day i’ll be able to have children, and that beats having a flat stomach any day.
You know what else? Liquid calories are not a waste of calories. I love coffee. I like and drink black coffee, but I can’t tell you that coffee with creamer and sugar is not much more delicious. I love lemonade. I love sweet tea. I love smoothies.
To this day, I don’t know what size I really am. I still attempt trying on clothes that are clearly not my size, but let me tell you, I tried on a small a few days ago, and to my surprise it wasn’t too small, it fit perfectly. My body is nothing to be ashamed of.
Although, I do like eating healthy, I like eating junk food just as much. I love pasta, and Taco Bell is my favorite. I like donuts and gummy candy. I love chocolate ice cream and cheesecake. Calories cannot rule my life, and I refuse to deny myself of the simply pleasures in life because of an extra xxx calories.
I don’t know how to do makeup. I wore foundation for about a year to conceal my acne, but I still wasn’t satisfied, so I stopped wearing it. It’s funny, but I’ve been doing pretty much the same make-up since eighth grade. Eye liner and mascara. Whether I choose to wear make-up or not, it does not change the true beauty the Lord created me in. I like a more natural look and usually feel more beautiful without make-up, and that’s okay, just as it is even if I chose to wear more make-up in the future. I refuse to wear make-up in attempt to change or hide God’s creation because I have insecurities. I’ll choose to wear it because I am confident and happy with the natural me first.
I have spent too many days attempting to become something that I am not. I am not a super model. I have stretch marks, acne scars, and extra skin. My thighs jiggle, and I have back fat. My body is not super curvy. I bite my nails, and I’m average height. But please tell me when that deemed me not beautiful? When did beauty become such a superficial thing? I may have flaws, but society is the main flaw I can see. Many times, I strive to receive my self-worth and beauty from superficial and stupid standards that society has made. No matter my size or outward appearance am I any less beautiful. As cliche as it sounds, society is ugly. I am not.
I can constantly compare myself to other women, but what’s the point? Will there be women more beautiful than me? Yes. But does that mean I am any less beautiful. No, I am made perfectly and exactly the way God made me to be. I am made uniquely beautiful in my own way, just as all women are. Beauty is not a competition.
I am more than a number.
I am more than my outward appearance.
I am more than a statistic.
I am more than anything that has been placed on me.
I am more than superficial and unrealistic beauty standards.
I am flawed, but I am beautiful.
And nothing is going to stop me from kicking the teeth in of every single one of my struggles.
So, to my insecurities, you cannot and will not rule my life anymore.
I choose life.
I choose happiness.