To the mom at the splash park sitting on the sidelines.
I saw you. I want you to know that while you saw me running around with my kids in my bathing suit, it wasn’t always like this.
It looks like I “have it all together” but I am no different than you.
I have birthed two kids and have loose skin on my stomach. I, like most women, carry cellulite on the back of my legs.
I spent years hating my body. I would have done anything to get rid of the body I was born with.
I used to envy other women’s bodies and wish I could have leaner legs, a flatter stomach, less baggage in my ass. I spent years hiding my body because it was not good enough. My body meant I was not worthy to play in the water without a cover up.
“It’s just not fair” I thought.
Enter an entire decade of diets, diet pills, detoxes, anorexia, bulimia, obsessive exercise, trainers, programs. I did it all. I wasted, yes wasted, an entire decade trying to change my body. I missed out on life because of my body.
If only I could get to THAT weight, I would be happy. If only I could wear THOSE jeans, I would be happy.
And I got there. And I was still effing miserable. Actually I was more miserable than before. I had no life. My self worth was completely tied to my body which, no matter how small I got or how much weight I lost, was never good enough in my eyes.
I saw you there today watching me from the sidelines.
I want you to know that it wasn’t always this way. It wasn’t until I became a mom of two that I realized just how fast life was passing. It was fleeting.
As the days passed with me on the sidelines, I realized that my kids deserve better. They deserve a mom who is able to embrace life.
They don’t care about the things that I *thought* mattered. The things that once held me back from living life.
They honestly don’t care how much I weigh, whether I have cellulite or loose skin or wear a bigger size than before giving birth. They don’t care how many steps I take or how many calories I eat in a day. It has zero effect on my ability to be a mom.
Unless I allow it too. Unless *we* allow it too.
Whether we go to a splash park or to a playdate at the pool, they deserve a mom who is able to live in the moment and not sit on the sidelines missing out because of how I *thought* I looked. Or needed to look to participate in the fun.
I get it. We exchanged looks today and I know it appears that this was easy for me today.
But it wasn’t always this way.
I missed out on alot of my life because my body was not “good enough.” I missed events, parties, dinners because I feared how I looked.
You see, I made a choice. One that you can make too.
I decided that my body was far more capable than I had ever given it credit for. My “flaws” are in some ways my power. These “thunder thighs” enable me to run, carry my kids, squat and lunge. I see them as power.
I am done hiding my body and missing out on life.
I am done wasting all of my mental energy hating my body and trying to change it. It’s exhausting.
My kids deserve better. I deserve better. You deserve better.
Life is so much more about WHO we are. In 10 years we won’t give a damn about the size of pants were we able to wear today. I know it seems “urgent” but at the end of the day, it doesn’t matter.
What WILL matter is that we missed out on life. That we missed an entire season of our life because we told ourselves we aren’t good enough because of our body.
I saw you there on the sidelines watching your kids splash in the water.
I want you to know that you too can make this choice. For you and for them.
I hope that you too embrace your body for all that it IS, wearing whatever it is you feel confident wearing and get in the water.