The journey to body acceptance is a vigorous fight, and one that involves both genders. It requires both sexes to rise above the grossly defined standards for beauty and attractiveness. We can work together to create a world built in understanding of human depth and uniqueness and not on shallow evaluation of appearance.
Women in their 50s are in a precarious position of not being old enough to be seniors but too old to be considered youthful. In many ways we're invisible. We are constantly in search of role models that represent these "tweener" years. When you add curviness to the mix, the representation becomes even smaller and less flattering.
We often don't appreciate our health until it's gone; thinking of things your body allows you to do can really put things into perspective
When it comes down to it, weight should be a byproduct of how we view health. Sure, certain numbers can tell us a whole heck of a lot about our health. But numbers can't tell us how we feel emotionally, physically, or spiritually. Numbers cannot tell us how our bodies feel.
Over the years, I have learned so much from Oprah Winfrey. I felt a kinship with her from the day she began her show in Chicago in 1986. She was so real. Plus, she was a woman of size (like me). She was someone who was approachable, not above me.
When people think that your size is bigger than your talent, screw 'em. When people talk about your clothes instead of your songs, screw 'em. When people tweet negative crap about you instead of sharing your awesome, screw 'em.
is telling a girl, "Your looks don't matter as long as you love yourself" really realistic? And how do we address matters of beauty when the concept is both subjective and largely defined by arbitrary, exclusive societal standards?
It may not have been your first thought when you looked at this picture of me at 39 weeks and two days pregnant, playing with my children in our backyard. But it's true.
In the days leading up to our encounter a peculiar thing happened -- I panicked. All along I had convinced myself that the shoot was a hero's journey designed to combat ageism and show our community that we're sexy, vital and important at any age. Turns out it wasn't the world that needed reassurance -- it was me.
We live with these voices and expectations all the time, but often feel like we're the only ones who hear them and feel them. It's a relief to bring them out into the light and air and see that we're not the only ones.
Girls pick up on our every sigh when we try on jeans that are snug, every groan when we don't like how our dress fits. And they hate hearing our disparaging remarks. It makes them feel sad because they love us. Our comments also normalizing the act of trash-talking our bodies.
Skinny or curvy, girls should never feel pressured into feeling bad about their body's natural form. It's time to start a new revolution and mindset for young girls.
I feel there's an unspoken sentiment that parents should avoid conversations about weight with their children. I beg to differ. In fact, I think parents take a big risk when they avoid this sticky issue.
I'm super aware of how mean I can be to myself a lot of the time and I'm constantly trying to battle the bully in my head that reared its head at a young age. I recognize that sometimes the things that can ruin my day by making me feel fat are so beyond ridiculous that I have to laugh at them.
The deal with "body image work" that we all need to get hip to, and that I hope mental health professionals will discuss with their clients in more depth as time goes on, is that loving our bodies as they are today requires a commitment to being proudly ourselves in spite of potential judgments by others.
The truth is that each of us can have a greater, stronger, longer-lasting effect on our self-esteem than the cultural influences -- negative or positive -- we encounter. How? True confidence actually grows from adopting various self-esteem-boosting habits over time.