I have arrived. I have arrived at this place of being tickled and pleased that I ordered a skirted swimsuit and when it arrived and I tried it on, I liked it. I liked it a lot. I like it so much I did a little photo shoot last night in my bedroom.
The best part about this is that I have arrived at this phase of being happy to just be here. To be invited to the dance. I don't care what you wear, but I hope that you feel this good (or even this ok) in it.
I won't claim to LOVE EVERYTHING ABOUT MY BODY. I won't claim to say I feel absolutely comfortable in my own skin ALL THE TIME. But I can say with quiet confidence, that I've earned this place and walk confidently in this world in the skin I'm in.
I have written before about feeling good in my swimsuit regardless of my insecurities. I have battled for body love most of my life. I have never been in love with my body and there has never been a time when if pressed, I couldn't find something I would change.
I've realized recently that I really am here. This really is my life. I've arrived. I am just so thankful to be here.
Part of that is wearing flats a lot more with great glee (if you know me at all you know that heels are/were my lifeblood and while I still wear them sometimes, I don't feel I HAVE TO) and part of that is being out in all kinds of dress or undress and just not giving a rip. Because that shit is exhausting. And I've got little kids to play with and guide and I am not here for any of that anymore.
Maybe it's being a parent. Maybe it's just overwhelming gratitude. I'm sure it's all those things.
It's a beautiful thing to be 43 years old and quite full of joy about just being here for all this goodness.
Sure, there are terrible, awful, monstrous things going on in the world, but I'm not here to focus on that.
Right now, I am just thankful for the opportunity to get in a SWIMDRESS and be on the beach with my kids.
Regardless of the feelings I may have about my body not being good enough - what even is that - in the past, feelings are not facts.
- I jiggle in places I didn't used to jiggle and everybody is focusing on that.
- I have visible cellulite and everybody is grossed out.
- I have to really hoist my girls up and keep them hoisted so that I don't smack anybody in the face.
- I have a c-section scar and twin skin that sometimes makes me self conscious.
- Nobody really gives a rip about what my body looks like.
- My body functions incredibly well.
- I actually look pretty damn good.
- My body is a reliable vehicle that helps me get around and do all the things I need to do on a daily basis.
- I'm healthy like a horse.
- I have a c-section scar and twin skin that is a constant and beautiful reminder of where we are and my healthy, beautiful kids.
I am here for my kids feeling confident about the skin they're in, no matter how they want to do that. The discrepancy between girls and boys clothes is loudly pronounced in every way. From sizing discrepancy starting at birth - with my girl always having to wear 3 sizes bigger than her brother when they are EXACTLY the same size - to the designs and the colors of the clothes.
I am here for my girl wearing swim trunks and swim shirts (which we do quite often) if she wants to or cute skirted swimsuits with hearts on them. I am here for my boy wearing shark shorts and a swim shirt or a girls bathing suit if he is so inclined.
I am exhausted from body shame. I am tired of working so hard to LOVE my body. I'm fine with my body. We are really good friends. We go back a long way and we've been though A LOT together. My body has not deserted me and it has not forsaken me. We get along great. I treat it pretty well ( I mean, it can really be improved some days) and it treats me so well.
I teach my kids that our bodies are incredible. They heal themselves after we have cuts or bruises or bumps. They let us run and play. They grow overnight. They are nourished by what we put in. Garbage in, garbage out, you know? Everything in moderation ("IF WE EAT TOO MUCH CANDY WE GET A TUMMY ACHE" - that's correct, children and please help me learn moderation as I teach it).
Our bodies are not to be taken for granted. If I spend too much time disliking my body or wishing it were different, what good does that do anybody? I mean, I'm not going to be the body type in the magazines any time soon and frankly, I don't want to be. This is a lifelong journey, but I will say I've made great progress as have so many of you walking along the same roads. Thank you.
I want my kids to know that their bodies are to be respected in all ways. They only have one body. And whether it is what they ingest or who they let touch their bodies, they need to be very careful. They are worthy of respect in all ways. As are other's bodies. You don't abuse, misuse, or get too close to any other bodies unless you have that person's consent.
I've done awful things to my body. Not for a long time now, but I'm just so thankful it all still works. It's all still hanging on. Who knows for how long, so I'm just not letting it go to waste you know?
I'll tell you a secret, I enjoy walking around in this skin I'm in these days under the radar. I used to be so self conscious because people looked at me as I walked by. You know those looks, the ones you don't want. People don't look at me anymore. AND I LIKE THAT.
I look people in the eye and I smile only when I feel like smiling, which actually is quite a lot.
I am here for my kids. In this body, in this life. I am not giving up or giving in by wearing this skirted swimsuit. I have a thing about dresses. And now two good things come of it. I get to wear a dress and play at the beach with my kids feeling just fine.
What in the world could be better than that?
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