Body Acceptance….So What’s Next?

Lately, my self-talk has shifted from my body to other areas of my life. This makes me wonder whether my body was ever the issue to begin with.

I’ve been questioning a lot of things in my life.

Recently my high school graduating class has been having a “virtual reunion.” Seeing some people’s success makes me think “I was a good student. Why didn’t I choose a more lucrative professional career like some of my classmates?”

All the time I spent in life believing my body was a problem that had to be solved….how did it help anyone? As far as I can see, it hurt me and didn’t help anyone else.  And it may have hurt others, too, by limiting my contribution to the world.

“A culture fixated on female thinness is not an obsession about female beauty, but an obsession about female obedience. Dieting is the most potent political sedative in women’s history; a quietly mad population is a tractable one.” – Naomi Wolf

So now that I know better, I can move on and contribute more. Right?

Not so fast.

It turns out that trying to fix myself and gain approval from others took up so much of my identity for so many years, that I have NO idea who I am without it.

I have no idea what direction I want to take next. No idea what I enjoy without those underlying motivations of fixing myself and gaining approval. No idea what will be achievable for me in this current stage of my life, with a young child to raise.

I have no idea. This void is uncomfortable. And I am choosing to sit with this discomfort, rather than refocus it onto the way my body looks. I am choosing to address the real issue here…that I don’t know how I want to focus my time and my energy. I know the answer is NOT “on the way my body looks,” nor “on whether others think I am inspirational.” But where to go from here?

I’m choosing to sit with the feelings of sadness and regret and uncertainty. To move through them rather than suppressing them or moving around them.

I saw this article today and it spoke to me. Worth a read for Anyone Who Thinks They Are Falling Behind In Life.

This is where I am now. This is where body acceptance has brought me. Though it is uncomfortable, it feels like progress.

And just as I needed patience to get here, I will need patience to move through it to whatever comes next.

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