“Just look at yourself!”
“That chubby face, those massive hips and thighs. The stumpy legs.”
“No wonder he doesn’t love you anymore. No wonder he left you for her! She is so much prettier than you are.”
I stood in front of the mirror. Tears streamed down my face. My body was shaking uncontrollably as I stared at it in disgust.
Resentment and anger accumulated in my chest. Heavy, dark, and painful, the all-consuming emotions tried to crush me. My throat felt tight, I couldn’t breathe, my mind was racing in desperation.
If only I was beautiful. Tall, slender, delicate, and fair. If only my body was perfect.
He wouldn’t have rejected and betrayed me. We would still be happy. The plans we made for a future together intact and alive.
I collapsed on the floor, sobbing and shivering. Blaming my flawed appearance for all the despair, the unbearable suffering, my shattered life.
I had always been insecure about my body and the way it looked. But now, I condemned it for failing me, destroying my life. Judged all its blemishes and cursed its unattractive features that were too ugly to love.
I hated my body but then something changed.
I went to work to improve my self-worth and break my mind’s conditioning.
I must have repeated the affirmations “I am worth” and “I love and approve of myself” thousands of times. I ignored my mind’s resistance to the new paradigm and forgave myself when I slipped back into old self-criticising habits for a while. I persevered.
I kept reminding myself that our commonly accepted concept of beauty was society-imposed, arbitrary, and unfounded. My body was a miracle regardless of whether its outer appearance met the criteria. As such, beauty wasn’t a prerequisite for loving it. Or for my worthiness as a person.
As my mind got used to the new way of thinking, I started to accept my body as a wonderful part of the infinitely worthy being I was. I broke free from the misguided untruths I used to bow to.
I am in a loving relationship with my body now. We are a team. I listen to its needs and allow it to look after me.
Every day I thank it for being awesome and serving me so well. When my body changes or is unwell or in pain, I bless it with love instead of cursing it for being weak or letting me down.
I still carry the twenty pounds I gained during my pregnancy. I might lose them eventually, for health reasons. But they don’t destroy my beauty; they don’t deduct from my worth.
I no longer look in the mirror and see vast hips, a flabby belly, and imperfections. I see a miracle. I see life.
I see worth.
Beauty isn’t restricted to a chosen few who happen to meet the requirements. It is an expression of the marvel of human existence. Beauty is within all of us.
Your body is a miracle. You are worth.