The perfect imperfections tag has been going round for quite a while, but I still think it’s fun to do it. Which parts of myself am I happy with? What parts of myself would I’d rather see differently? I will give you three for each question and write a bit about how I try to maintain confidence and appreciate my body image. Let’s start with the things I like about myself first.
- My legs
- My eyes
- My breasts
This was a lot easier than I thought! My proportions height was are a bit off: my legs are a bit too long for the length of my torso, but I actually like that. It’s why I fit many dresses, even though I’m short. Another plus about my legs is that they are quite possibly the most toned and flexible part of my body. I blame years of dance class, spinning and bodycombat for it, but I love how all it takes is sticking out my legs or putting on a pair of heels to make my legs look sky high and mighty find if I may say so.
Even though I have blonde hair, I’m still brown-eyed, have dark lashes and dark eyebrows. Not something you see in a lot of people and I love my brown eyes, which actually look greenish in certain lights. So technically, I don’t have brown eyes but hazel eyes. I really like this mixture as it allows me to wear tons of different eyeshadow colors without it looking crazy. My eyes have always been the part I have liked best about myself: they are small and almond shaped, with fairly long lashes and a tad bit deep set. A prized possession.
And last but not least: I love my lovely lady lumps (forgive the Fergie reference). I do have to say I have a bit of a love/ hate relationship with my two ladies up front. They can get in the way when doing workouts or buying clothes (shirts and dresses mostly), but when push comes to shove I love having them. I am graced with a well-proportioned chest and when I wear the right thing, it’s what makes me look feminine mostly as I am quite boxy looking otherwise. It took a while for me to appreciate them and when I was bigger and my breasts were bigger too I really didn’t like them, but with time came acceptance.
- My feet
- My stomach
- My shoulders
I dislike my feet. Not because they are big (they’re a UK size 4, US size 7, EU size 37), so I can wear any shoe I like. The thing I don’t like about them is the fact that one of my toes is crooked (on my right foot). Another thing I don’t like about my feet is how muscular they are. Due to my 20+ years of dancing my feet look kind of awful: callouses, a high & wide arch and muscles and veins running over my feet don’t exactly make them look appealing. Come summer, I have a day job on trying to keep them presentable.
I’d give the world for a flatter stomach. Whatever I try, the one part of my body that always bulges and won’t go away no matter how much I work out or watch what I eat, is my stomach. I have a pear shaped body type (which changes to apple shaped when I gain weight *le sigh*) and I simply pack a lot of weight around the lower part of my stomach and my hips. I love the curves it gives around my hips, but it’s just such a shame when you gaze at yourself from the side and you still have that little flappy bit that just won’t go away. At least it means I’m fertile, right ;-)?
My shoulders are my weak point: I can’t do push ups because my shoulders simply give out. And it’s not because they aren’t strong or defined. In fact, my shoulders are fairly well defined and strong enough to do almost anything. However, due to too much stress some years ago, my muscles simply gave out and never recovered. On top of that, they are wide (I can fit into a men’s size medium shoulder wise) and so I am skeptical about training my shoulders and trying to get them back to scratch as it will most likely end up bulking them up, which will just make me look like an Olympic swimmer.
What this tag is of course about is body image: how do you see yourself and to what extend do you simply accept that what you’ve been given? I already wrote a lengthy post last year about my struggle with maintaining a healthy weight and feeling good about myself. Honestly, I have to say that right now I’m in an overall good place in my life. I feel good about myself and can actually stand in front of a mirror and think: darn I look good. And that’s a first.
Going to the gym and thinking about foods I eat are definitely part of that change of thinking. It makes me feel good to work out as it makes me happy and relieves some of the tension in my shoulders. Food wise I feel better ever since I changed my diet in late 2011. What you eat plays an important role in how you feel overall and weight loss or gain is only part of that. I feel I have more energy, sleep better and don’t get as many stomachaches as I used to. And that also helped me in constructing a more positive image of myself.
The fact that I have also experienced how resilient and hardworking my body is, made me appreciate it more. I will never be a size 0. I could be, but the efforts it would take, i.e. foods you can’t eat and the amount of exercise needed, to reach that goal would mean that I can’t live my life. So that’s why I’ve decided to simply try to feel good by taking good care of myself, say yes to the occasional slice of apple pie, wear clothes that I feel look flattering on and accept that I am who I am.