- an intellectual or idealized image of what one’s body is or should be like
- an individual’s concept of his or her own body
- the subjective concept of one’s physical appearance based on self-observation and reactions of others.
These are the 3 definitions that I found when I look up Body Image. To me when someone says “body image” I immediately think of my OWN definition or understanding and that is
“The Media, News, Social Outlets, & Other people’s perceptions of what a body should be like and what is acceptable and attractive”
I saw a picture on a friends Facebook regarding this topic I wanted to talk about and thought I would post the picture on my page just to see how people would perceive this particular picture. My findings were fascinating:
Most of my friends viewed this statement as I did – forget society’s ideals and body image they shove down girls throats every where you turn …. and that is to be unhealthfully skinny
Now there were a few that took this solely as a comparison of which body type is more attractive. Which I didn’t even look at it that way. BUT there was a comment though that struck a chord with me and that is “It’s fine for curvy gals to be all proud & mean about being thin but if a thin girl called someone heavy gross she’d be a bitch, right? It just isn’t fair to criticize any woman’s body period.”
And although I agree … that it isn’t fair to criticize any woman’s body. In this day and age, it is MORE acceptable and common to criticize someone for being heavy or curvy than a girl for being too thin. This is done ALL the time Adele, Khloe Kardasian, Oprah, Christina Aguilera, the list goes on and on. Actually Christina Aguilera not only got criticized for being heavier she got criticized for being dropping too much weight at one point because she was on tour all the time and the dance routines were so much that she couldn’t keep the weight on.
I think my friend Fritchle said it best– Being healthy! That’s all that should matter Taking care of yourself and respecting your one and only body. Mind Body Soul! Who cares what society says. Compare MM to a healthy fit girl in a bikini and not one who has the anorexia.
WE are society – you, me, your brother, your sister …. we all make up society. Don’t let other people, media, or peer pressure dictate how you feel about your body. If you are healthy and can wear the clothes you want to wear then who cares if you have a little curve? Or not so much curve???
I have to talk about my really good friend Sarah Long aka Ashlee. She has been such an amazing person in my weight loss journey. In my life time I have never come across anyone that isn’t encouraging about losing weight and getting healthy. Like how can you not be encouraging to that?? But Sarah has really been on me to start yoga as a way of life. She talks about yoga, how it’s changed her life, and how with the meditation it helps her to focus an pray. One of the many things that I love about her is that she looks at me beyond my size. She never sees me as “heavy” or “large” she sees me as beautiful and awesome. (which I am … DUH) but most importantly she encourages me so much and I learn so much from her about self-image.
Now, based on her amazing loving relationship with yoga I decided to go. I am never one who lets my weight hinder me when it comes to trying new exercises. So I went to this yoga studio about 3 weeks ago and met a friend there. The way this studio is set up, your teacher is the one who signs you in before class and that way she can chat with you and answer any questions you may have. I think that is a great business strategy. So in talking to my new teacher, I tell her that I am fairly new to yoga (only have taken it a couple of times) and that I have arthritis in my foot that was just healing from a fracture, so there might be some moves that I need alternative moves for.
Then the comment was made …… “It’s so great to see you here Angela, there aren’t a lot of heavy people trying yoga”
Now this isn’t the first time I have had a comment like this …. but every time I am shocked and amazed that someone would think its okay to say that. What is it about me that tell people “its okay to make a rude comment like that?” Because seriously you would be amazed at how much I get that.
So during the yoga class I am going through the moves and when you are doing something like yoga, dance, Zumba, anything choreographed .. you struggle until you get what the move is or routine or whatever. This teacher kept saying “if you are struggling child pose (which is basically to sit out) is available to you” looking straight at me. I just wanted to say– look I am just trying to learn the moves. She wasn’t looking or saying it to the thinner newbies in the class. With all my annoyance with this teacher, I thought I did a great job and didn’t have to go into child pose once so SUCK IT teacher.
She just created a monster because when you tell me I can’t … then I will…. just to prove that I can and I will be better than you.
Now … I always have to turn everything into a positive because that is who I am. So, I maybe heavier that most of the people at the studio, but that just means when I shed these pound I will be stronger than all of them. So…. I WIN
I have gone to Yoga now about 4 times and it really is amazing because its my way of connecting with God and I am seeing my body changing. I am getting stronger and I am developing muscles I havent seen in over 15 years. Hello Muscles!!!!
So when someone tells you that you can’t ……..go out there and prove them wrong!!!! Its one of the best feelings.
Here is a picture of me and Sarah/Ashlee from one of the first times we meet. 4 years ago
So today is HUGE. Ray (my husband) and I are going to see my absolute favorite band in the world…
The Foo Fighters!!!! I am so excited.
But with this excitement brings anxiety. You are probably there thinking “what could possibly bring anxiety at a concert?” Could it be the swarms of people? The horrible setup they have for parking? The drunken idiots puking in the corner? It’s none of these things.
Well with my body shape, I am more of a pear shape. My thighs have what are called “saddle bags” or what I like to call them “duffle bags.” They are very curvy. So it’s difficult for me to sit in a chair with fixed arms on the side. This is the same anxiety and situation I get with flights too. I am always sitting to the side or in awkward positions to fit in the seat. Panicking in my head that other people know what I am up to and judge me because they know the only reason I can’t fit comfortably in that chair is because I am fat. My mind races, many of my friends say “oh who cares what other people think?” I always reply “me”
In my years I have faked the “I don’t care” attitude really good. There are several different restaurants that have nice patio seating, one of which is my absolute favorite Mexican Restaurant “Fidel’s” now called Norte but I refuse to call it by its new name. They have these beautiful white iron rod chairs out on their patio. I can’t fit in them. I am entirely way too embarrassed to ask for a different chair. I will push in my thighs wedge myself into the chair then grin and bear it. But the whole time my thighs and legs are going numb and I am having the worst time because I am so uncomfortable. To the point where I want to cry but instead I engross myself in whatever conversation is going on to keep my mind off the physical and mental pain. I am the type of person that always wants my friends to be happy. I would never want to hinder that. So instead of asking to sit inside and explain why…. I would rather suffer.
So tonight I will be hoping that there isn’t “those people” that complain that people stand at concerts, so I will get a little reprieve. Otherwise I will be uncomfortable … but man the Foo Fighters are SO WORTH IT!!!!