2015-Feb-25, Wednesday 09:59 pm
thisisdesire: GoddessTara (Default)
This day blows. To be fair, I've felt that way about most days for the last ever, but have somehow managed to turn many of them around here lately. The whole of today has not been hammered shit, but it has certainly had it's moments. Like now, when I am feeling very much like I am not enough and never will be as long as I continue to exist in a world that assigns value arbitrarily to those who are properly proportionate. Whatever the hell that means.
Today, I had the privilege of listening to an incredibly beautiful woman talk about how fat she was. This was certainly not the first time that's happened, but for the first time that I can remember I allowed myself to step back and watch my thoughts about it as they stomped through my brain. I got angry and uncomfortable. I thought - if she feels that way about herself, then I must be the world's most unattractive woman by comparison, and in that split second I blamed her for all of it. I blamed her for her beauty and her oblivion and held her responsible for all the wrongs of the world. SHE was the reason that I felt so horrible. Who gave HER the right to question her appearance? to find fault with herself? and to not only imagine it into existence (I mean, seriously, there was absolutely nothing wrong with this woman! What fun house mirror had she been using?) but to speak it out loud so that anyone else who hears will be given the gift of not measuring up?

Of course I had to laugh at how completely ridiculous I was being. I am not the only human who is allowed to feel inadequate and covet the unrealistic ideal. Everyone gets to play. We are all entitled to doubt, pick apart, and find fault with ourselves as often as we like and as loud as we wish. Exercising that right by no means makes her a terrible person. However, I realized something that had really never occurred to me before - that when I say horrible things about my appearance I am potentially infecting the air of anyone within earshot. I am telling them that regardless of whether or not THEY find me attractive or interesting, they had better think again, because that is clearly not the case. I am hopelessly flawed and their judgment is irrevocably fucked and if they can be so wrong about me then they probably haven't taken the time to properly consider how completely disgusting THEY are and they should really just go home, lock the door, get into some sweats, AND NEVER LEAVE THE HOUSE AGAIN!!!...

...okay, so, maybe I'm not so powerful that I can incite random bursts of agoraphobic badness in total strangers on the strength of my own self-loathing. However, I am absolutely powerful enough to encourage anyone who hears me body shame myself to do the same thing. Because they find me more attractive than they do themselves, and if I'm ugly and gross, then they are obviously worse, so they must be an absolute eyesore. Because down playing your beauty is a thing that keeps you humble (until you really start to believe it). Because movies and magazines and celebrities and t.v. Because we are all supposed to talk about these things because we're human. Because mob mentality. Because I don't know where to draw the line between my right to bitch about my body and your right to live free of my expectations. Because nothing tastes as good as skinny feels. Because because because because because.

Because. Bullshit. I deserve better. YOU deserve better. So, regardless of how I might feel about myself in this transitional period, I'm pretty sure I'm done saying horrible things about myself to anyone at all. Because I don't just want to SEE some better examples.

I want to BE one.
thisisdesire: GoddessTara (Default)
Today has been about empowerment and the accomplishment of small goals that will absolutely add up over time.

In the last two days I have stopped in front of the mirror several times in order to compliment myself ("Holy crap! I'm GORGEOUS!") or to blow myself a kiss. I'm being pretty silly about it right now, but it is definitely a step in the right direction. The Offspring (the kid, not the band) has noticed and finds the whole thing terrifically amusing.

We sat down and had a conversation about body image and things that we can do to cultivate one that is loving and kind. She has decided to follow my lead as far as saying something nice to herself in the mirror everyday and we came up with a way for her to deal with any unfortunate body shamers that she might encounter. She is going to keep a few slips of paper with kind things on them in her pocket and whenever someone is being a shit for no good reason, she will give them one and affirm that they are worthy and do not need to make others feel bad so that they can feel good. Yes, we are both aware that this method involves a certain amount of condescension, but it beats the Hell out of slinking off, yelling, or hitting, while reinforcing that the problem lies with the shamer, not the one who is being shamed. I'm not sure how often she will feel comfortable actually doing this, but I really like the idea.

She also wants to make a scrapbook and make time once a week to put lipstick kisses in it and right compliments to ourselves and each other. She wants to take pictures and put them in there as well. I am so down.

I have taken 3 pictures over the last three days. My current technological situation has some issues with picture posting, so I will get to that as soon as it becomes possible. In the meantime, I will continue to flirt shamelessly with both my mirror and camera with the hope that we can take this stunning relationship to new and exciting places.

Today, I love myself with minimal effort. It is my hope that the seeds that are planted in these moments will carry me through darker days.


2015-Feb-21, Saturday 11:17 am
thisisdesire: GoddessTara (Default)
Some days you wake up just knowing that it's gonna be good. You feel rested and fresh. Your skin does not have that burning dry feeling that you generally wake up to before applying the requisite 3-4 coats of St. Ives OMG-This-Shit-Is-For-Real Mega-Super Lotion for Severely Dry Skin. Your hair does what it's supposed to with minimal effort. Your clothes fit right, concealing and revealing exactly as they are meant to. You feel truly beautiful. The birds are singing and you aren't even bothered by the sun shining (because presumably you are like me and cannot fucking abide bright shiny days, but prefer that they be cloudy and overcast).

I'm sure you know where this is going.
Yeah. Today is not that day.

Clothes not working, breasts spilling out of ill-fitting-too-goddamn-small-bra, uterus in revolt, hair wild and unkempt and nothing to be done. At one point I stood in front of my mirror and stared at my body, half-naked from the waste down, and tried to reconcile myself with this image that I have been staring at for years, but still seems so foreign to me.

I feel no connection to this vehicle yet I feel like it owns me.

I wanted to close my eyes but forced myself to keep them open. I imagined seeing the same shape lovingly. I heard all the critical voices in my head screaming that there was too much of me. That the space that my thighs, ass, and belly occupy would prevent anyone from ever loving me again or even really wanting to know me. I screamed inwardly for the voices to stop. I lifted my belly (cause, yeah, I can do that) and willed myself to see it differently. I looked at my face, all twisted up in disgust and waited for the moment to end, but it kept on because I had not yet done what I needed to do.

I softened my gaze before finally allowing my eyes to close and stopped myself from snatching up my phone or calling out to the girl-child to have someone to complain to about my unfortunate lack of anything resembling attractiveness or self-esteem. I stopped myself and thought about how I don't want to infect anyone else with my shitty attitude and how it is no one else's job to be my antidote. Then I thought that the last thing my daughter needs is to hear me bitch more about my body image when I am trying to help her feel better about her own. I thought about the fact that it is okay to reach out, but I need to start actively practicing self-love and acceptance instead of running on automatic pilot to anyone and everyone who might provide me with a moments distraction.

I want to stop looking outside of myself for love and validation.

This is pretty basic stuff, territory that has been very well covered, but I'm still working it out. I am still piecing together my 30 day plan-o-action for Radical Unapologetic Healing. In the mean the mean time I intend to address each moment as it comes in the best way that I know how.

Today, my accomplishment is in the absence of action as I refuse to let my daughter hear me utter a single unkind word to or about myself.


2015-Feb-19, Thursday 01:12 pm
thisisdesire: GoddessTara (Default)
I am having a rough day. I am telling myself that it's okay. I can still turn this day around and make it something positive. I really just want to go back to sleep or lay down and spend the whole day crying and sobbing, but I did that for a very long time and nothing ever got better.

My laptop died and I am having trouble being adaptable. I am worried that I may have lost a bunch of information for my college application and am trying not to catastrophize. Lots of shitty body image thoughts over the last two days and have really just been treading water with that. I haven't gotten much farther than telling myself "that's just bullshit". So, hear goes:

I am a good person.
I have value simply because I exist.
I do not have to be pretty or attractive or beautiful for anyone, but I can be all of these things if I wish.
I am strong.
I am capable.
I am smart.
I am kind, compassionate, and loving.
I am more than the sum of my shitty decisions. They do not define who I am. I have every single day to choose to do things differently.
I love myself. Just because. Because I deserve it. Not because of anything I have done or not done, but because I am a living thing with a soul and I deserve good things like everyone else.
My body shape does not define me.
Bodies come in all shapes and sizes and no one shape or size is any more or less beautiful. Just different. Some may be more or less pleasing to others, but this is not my concern. What other people think of me is none of my business and it does not effect who I am.
The roundness of my arms, thighs, hips, and belly is soft and lovely and not anything to be ashamed of.
I love myself. Myself I love. I myself love. I love myself.
Over and over and over.

I hope these things begin to feel more true over time.

The next few questions for my RUHCUS project deal with acceptance, honour, and release. They are as follows:

Acceptance is understanding that my shitty body image has served me in some way.

12. List three things you have gained from having a shitty body image.

While I understand the purpose of this exercise I am having a really difficult time figuring out what to put here...

1. I have gained an understanding about the sort of privilege that can go along with being thin or beautiful in ways that are well known and accepted by the majority and even particular sub groups.
There are a number of situations where I am treated differently or completely ignored and I realize that there have been times in my life when I have behaved this way with other people. No one deserves to feel like they are less than and I don't want to be that sort of person.

I am not coming up with any other way that this has served my. I will give it some more thought, but do not want to force it, so I am going to move on for the time being.

Honour allows us to realize that the thing in the box (my shitty body image) was born out of truth. It was something I developed because I needed it for survival.

List two ways having a shitty body image has served you.

1. It has humbled me.
2. It has kept my arrogance and narcissism in check and forced me to accept that other parts of me are just as important, if not more so, than my physical appearance.

List two ways having a shitty body image has protected you.

My therapist insists that it has protected me from certain types of assholes. However, I have managed to not only find, but seek out a number of assholes all by my onesie, so I think that's total crap. She also says that it can be a way of insulating yourself from the rest of the world and while this may be true, I do not feel like this protected me at all as being isolated contributed to extreme feelings of unworthiness and led to want of death.

The only other thing that I can think of to put here is that as having a shitty body image has kept me from participating in a number of situations where danger may or may not have been laying in wait. However, that is pretty slim. Having a shitty body image has not protected me from horrible people as horrible people are often even more interested in folks with self esteem issues as they are often easier to manipulate or control. So, since I don't particularly feel like I have been protected by having a shitty body image I can safely say that I have even more reason to let this shit go.

Release allows us to see that the thing in the box is not serving us anymore and take our power back.

List four things you would do if your shitty body image no longer had power.

1. I would be able to see myself as strong, capable, empowered and beautiful regardless of what my physical appearance may or may not be on any given day. I would understand that my physical representation does not touch the core of who I really am.
2. I would be able to take compliments and pictures and look into mirrors without cringing and verbally abusing my beautiful self.
3. Poetry and roller derby, baby.
4. This one is really hard to acknowledge and admit to, but the point is honesty and transparency, so here goes: I would stop allowing unworthy douchebags into my orbit because I would no longer believe that they are all I deserve. I would know with absolute certainty that I deserve better and would not settle.

I need to take a minute to let that sink in.


So, I had to run around the house and do shit for a bit while I was dealing with the fact that I am mighty. I never really know how long those feelings will last at this juncture, so I have to take advantage of them while I can.

Now we are moving on to the actual ceremony planning bit of this little adventure. I am very much wanting to hear from folks regarding schedules and availability. I would like to do it on a Saturday and am thinking of using the Unitarian Church. There will essentially be two parts to this gathering: ceremonial (symbolic/visual, and tactile. For the ceremonial aspect I am pretty much going to crib off of the example on the worksheet because it just fits so very well.

In a bowl I will have written on separate slips of paper all the reasons I adopted the issue I am wanting healing from: what do I feel like it gave me? What historical pains are attached to it? In the presence of he group I will read aloud each sheet of paper. After each one i will say aloud how it is no longer serving me. I will then pass a basket around and each person in the ceremony will take one of the slips , rip it, while stating that they wish to release me from whatever is on the sheet. Ex:"today I release you from...words of shame that were spoken to you as a teenager. I replace it with a belief that you are whole, vibrant, and loved." Each person in the space will do this in their own words. At the end I will burn the ripped sheets of paper and toast to my journey of healing.

The tactile aspect is going to involve a group art project. We are going to decoupage a mirror and put the power of our positive energy to work making something beautiful to remind myself that I am beautiful every time I use it. We will be using whatever magazines, paper, and other materials we can collectively scrounge up. I am thinking of making this a potluck situation as it would be nice if we could all share some snacks and comfort drinks while honoring, celebrating and playing together.

Now I need to address one last thing. Parts of me are feeling pretty selfish about this part of it, like I am asking too much of my people by asking them to take time out of their lives to show up, support me, bring some food, and make some funky art that only I get to keep. There is part of me that doesn't feel worthy of so much time and attention being focused only on ME. and I think that is part of why I need to do it. To look those feelings in the face, acknowledge them, and counter it with something loving, kind, and compassionate. I need to acknowledge that *I* am just as worthy of those things as everyone else. I have invited all those I love and respect to take part in my self-destruction. Why can't I invite you to be a part of my recovery? I am in no way asking any of you to do the work for me, but I need to be SEEN and I need to be known for something other than my flaws. I would be willing to do this for any one of you. Truthfully, I think I would be willing to do this for a total stranger or someone that I haven't spoken with for years and may not even like. It's that important. So, thank you, again. I still feel selfish. I still feel like an attention whore. and I am still absolutely going to see this through.


thisisdesire: GoddessTara (Default)

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