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I Should Have Loved My Body


 just never felt pretty. That is a shame because we are all pretty in our own way. It is like food or fashion. We don’t all find the same styles and tastes appealing. I know all this in the front part of my brain, but somewhere in the bowels of mind, there is that voice that just never gives up.
Quieting the negative voice is not easy

Puberty hit along with the slippery slope of negative body image that often comes alongside it. The decline was stable throughout the rest of my adult life, or maybe it just remained a stable ache that never subsided.

My mother was typically stunning. A blond, blue-eyed Brit whose looks stopped traffic. That can take its toll on a gangly dark haired tween who has just realized that the world places blond, blue-eyed bombshells at the top of the list of what makes a woman beautiful. At least that is how it felt to me.


I just never felt pretty. That is a shame because we are all pretty in our own way. It is like food or fashion. We don’t all find the same styles and tastes appealing. I know all this in the front part of my brain, but somewhere in the bowels of mind, there is that voice that just never gives up. Not tall enough, not thin enough, not firm enough. I know some of you hear that voice. The challenge is getting that voice to shut up. So far I have not been successful. I have always felt over weight despite several trips a week to the gym. Again, I know I am a good weight but that nasty voice never lets me off the hook.

I remember feeling my features were masculine. I know that sounds ridiculous, but my dad is dark and middle eastern, so somewhere along the way I equated dark hair and eyes to masculinity whereas my mother being the standard definition of beauty in North America at the time was what I considered feminine.

Now that I am a grandma I am almost at the “loving your body” stage of my life. Almost. I am not as hard on myself as I once was. Every decade forces me to look back and realize I should never have been so hard on that poor girl who was always hating her thighs and wishing she looked like someone else.


You are stuck with you. You got what you got. As time passes and the wrinkles grow ever deeper, I learned that it doesn’t matter that I am not nearly as perfect as the magazines and social media say I should be. That is not to say that nasty voice was stopped her chanting but I am trying.


What truly matters is the look of love in the eyes of those who love me for who I am, as I am. I only wish I had figured some of this out sooner and had loved that girl who was me ten, twenty, thirty years ago.

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