HI! I’m Summer. I’m overweight. Some might even call me fat. What you don’t know, and what doesn’t matter, is that I eat a well rounded diet full of vegetables, protein, and fat. I also exercise. A lot. I might even be able to run circles around you. I’m disproportionately curvy. I’m awesome.
I’d like to introduce you to my friend who is also awesome:
Hi I’m Kerri. I’m on the slender side. Some of you might call me skinny. Some of you might call me a twig. Fact is, I don’t think I’ve knowingly ever had a diet soda. I don’t even think the word diet is in my vocabulary, unless you mean healthy diet. Depending on how you look at it, I’ve been blessed or cursed with a wicked metabolism. Too bad it burns off more than calories. The thing is, I’m pretty darn comfortable in my own skin. You know, for a twig.
Everyone say hi to Kerri! “HIIIII KERRRIIII!”
Kerri introduced me to this post about 14 Things Every Fat Girl Needs to Hear. It sparked an intense conversation about how that post is really “14 things that every woman needs to hear, regardless of her size”. The list is great, but it applies to everyone.
I’m so over the “fat girl v. skinny girl” thing. I understand that some people think that it’s helping overweight gals feel more comfortable with their bodies, but I can tell you that it’s doing the opposite. It’s making overweight women feel like they are both superior to skinny women and inferior to skinny women. No wonder we’re miserable. No wonder one of my best friends, who is a former cheerleader and a solid size 8, has never felt that she has “the perfect body”.
Holy crap, people. This is insane. Do we not have more important things to worry about, like saving our children from red dye 40 and rescuing kittehs from the mean streets of your town? Don’t we have bills to pay, children to entertain, and husbands to keep happy? Do we not have desires of our own to meet, apart from the way our bodies look?
WHY the constant stratification of body type? Do we really, really think that someone is better than someone else because they are thin? or fit? or fat?
WHY can’t we all be confident in who we are and how we look whether we’re in a 00 jean size or a 30?
You aren’t better than me because you’re thin, and I’m not better than you because I’m fat. We are both, we are all capable of being confident, beautiful women. The key lies in knowing that you are beautiful, no matter what the latest fashion magazine tells you.
So in response to the article above, I want to provide you with 15 things ALL women absolutely need to hear – regardless of body shape or size. Hey banana lady, I’m talking to you. Yo, pear shape, you too. Hey apple lady, read this. It’s for all of us.
15. You will be judged no matter how you look.
It’s true. We’re a big, fat society of judgmental jerkwads. Don’t you dare be thin or workout too hard because someone might try to shove a cake down your throat or tie you to a sofa. Don’t you dare be overweight and eat anything. Don’t you know overweight people shouldn’t eat? God forbid you try to be average sized. You average sized women don’t have any standards, do you? It doesn’t matter what size you are, what color your hair is, what you do for a living, who you hang out with, or what your hobbies are. You are going to be judged for something at some point in your life. You just have to know how awesome you are and screw the judgemental Johns and Judys. You have opinions, right? Let other people have their opinions too. It’s just bound to happen and there’s nothing you can do about it. I guarantee you as soon as you stop caring so much about what other people think about you, you will in turn stop being so judgmental. Comparison is the thief of all joy. Believe it. Move on with your life.
14. When people pay you a compliment, take it graciously, they’re not blowing smoke up your ass.
If someone pays you a compliment, stop acting coy. It’s not cute. Take the compliment graciously. Say “Thank you!” and move on. On the other hand, don’t dole out compliments unless you really mean them. Once you start being honest with those around you, you will find that it’s easier to accept compliments from other people when they pay them to you. I guarantee you, most people aren’t being disingenuous when they pay you a compliment. And if they are, take the compliment anyways. Take it and run, homegirl.
13. Stop putting yourself down and fishing for compliments. It doesn’t look good on you.
You have got to stop looking for confidence from other people. You have to find it in yourself. And stop looking to be something you’re not. It took me 30 years to come to grips with the fact that I am a pear shape. I have a small waist and enormous hips and thighs no matter what kind of shape I’m in. It’s my shape. It’s beautiful. Now that I know I’ll never look like my banana shaped friends, I can appreciate what I have on its own without going deep sea fishing for shallow compliments. Those things do little for your long-term confidence and happiness. As soon as you realize who you are and how you are built, and come to grips with those things, you will be infinitely happier.
12. Own your body – it’s your own, and it’s beautiful.
This totally ties in with #13. Love your body. I get so ticked off when I hear someone say, “I have a good body”, or “She has such a good body.” Well, duh. It’s a body, right? It gets you from point A to point B, yeah? It does what it needs to do, OK? It might be lumpy, scarred, flabby, discolored, or misshapen. It’s still a “good” body. I think I have a GREAT body. I think you have a GREAT body too. Now own that thought and stop comparing yourself to something and someone you will never be.
11. Men, women, people; they’re attracted to you when you’re attracted to yourself.
Do you know what makes a woman beautiful? Her confidence. A woman who knows that she is worthy of praise is a beautiful woman. I might not be the prettiest girl on the block. I might not have the most firm body in town. I might not even be the smartest cookie in the container, but I’m freaking awesome. I have confidence in the fact that I have something to offer the world and so the world believes that I have something to offer it.
The days I lay around in my pajamas and fail to put makeup on are the days I feel worthless and bad about myself. I realize that some people don’t do the whole “makeup thing”, but a little bronzer, some mascara, and lipgloss – they go a long way, baby. That and doing something lovely with your hair will make you walk a little taller and I think you’ll be surprised with how much more often you’ll want to look in the window when you walk by one. When you can look in a mirror and honestly think, “I look beautiful today”, you will attract people to yourself. Get rid of photoshopped ideals. You are perfectly flawed – just like the rest of us.