Because our kids learn how to view their bodies through our example
Too often, motherhood and body positivity don’t always go hand in hand. The body changes in pregnancy, and for some of us — those changes last and may make us feel insecure about our new vessels. With the help of her toddler daughter, one mom shut down her inner negativity — by buying a fabulous bikini and rocking the hell out of it.
Instagram user “PCOS Support Girl” — also known as Coach Shelby online — recently shared a photo of herself in her new bikini, which is awesome all on its own. But it’s her accompanying words that will gut-punch you, make you tear up, and then leave you ready to conquer the world all on your own.
|| Yea, I'm gonna rock it || in honor of @nonairbrushedme #ALWAYSABEACHBODY My daughter starts swim lessons tomorrow. And, I hate to admit this, but she should have started two years ago. But my fear of getting in a pool, in front of others, who knew me, in a bathing suit won. . . I'm actively trying to be brave and get over stupid freaking anxiety issues. I know damn well she, at 3, cares more about playing with glitter and dolls and in the mud with her brother than what her mom wears. . . But she's smart. She is watching me. She's a little spitfire. She says what she thinks. She is brave and bold and stands up for herself. She tells me all the time how pretty she is and how strong she is. And I want to be like her. . . So today, as we talked about swim class tomorrow, she said " I want a bikini." And off we went to Target. She picked hers out, all on her own. Then she said, " your turn." . . A knot in my stomach, I told her, "oh mommy can't wear a bikini to swim class, boo." She looked up from the cart and asked, "but why?" . . Why? Seriously though, why couldn't I? I could. I just felt uncomfortable. Observed. Exposed. A bit like I'd embarrass her. But all of those sounded selfish in the moment, so I said, " you know what? You're right. Let's get mommy a bikini." . . Because she is learning, every day, from me just how to view her OWN body. I don't want to teach her to put limitations on what clothes she can wear or to worry about what others will think. I certainly want her to see her body as unique and wonderful and to be kind to it. I want her to always stay the brave, bold blonde little girl who knows exactly what she wants and exactly how beautiful and strong she is. The same little girl I used to be, before life and society taught me I shouldn't be. . . So we bought bikinis. We rushed home, we played and spent the afternoon excited about how we'd be mermaids tomorrow. And we tried on our bikinis. Like the brave, bold beautiful blondes we are. #mypcosbody ( reshare in honor of #alwaysabeachbody)
Shelby writes that the day before her three-year-old’s first swim lesson, she was feeling a little anxious. You know, because it’s a room full of strangers and you have to be in your bathing suit. Not exactly every woman’s comfort zone. It’s hard feeling insecure and not letting it show.
Her daughter decided she wanted a new bikini for swim lessons (as one does), and when they went to Target to pick one out, her little girl wanted her mom to get one too.
“So today, as we talked about swim class tomorrow, she said ‘I want a bikini.'” Shelby writes. “And off we went to Target. She picked hers out, all on her own. Then she said, ‘your turn.'”
She continues, “A knot in my stomach, I told her, ‘oh mommy can’t wear a bikini to swim class, boo.’ She looked up from the cart and asked, ‘but why?'”
“Why? Seriously though, why couldn’t I? I could,” she writes. “I just felt uncomfortable. Observed. Exposed. A bit like I’d embarrass her. But all of those sounded selfish in the moment, so I said, ‘You know what? You’re right. Let’s get mommy a bikini.'”
|| #myPCOSbody || •body acceptance and diversity & PCOS • I have been trying to explain and show how body image and body acceptance is a crucial part of PCOS for a couple years. I get asked often, • "What the hell does body acceptance have to do with PCOS?" • Well-EVERYTHING. We are dealing with symptoms that literally rip away things that make you feel like a beautiful, worthy human. We grow hair in weird places and lose it like John Travolta, and we are told we can't have babies, and then, we are given bodies that just can't figure out how to do that whole "just eat less move more" gig. • Because of the lack of understanding of how complex and diverse each case of pcos is and HOW it presents leads to one simple fact- our bodie's appearance is often used to decide our treatment. • Because of this, a widespread general opinion of PCOS is we are overweight, infertile, hairy hormonal pity party throwers who just need to 'try harder.' And thin women often get COMPLETELY dismissed because "if you're not overweight you can't have PCOS." • Weight loss is the fix for all your PCOS problems, we are told. .So OF COURSE we are more prone to being obsessed with changin our bodies and do anything to 'fix' them. • PCOS is a diverse,complex condition that affects each woman differently and presents in so many different bodies. • No wonder women with PCOS are more likely to battle negative body image, disordered eating, anxiety and depression. They're stuck in a box uneducated society and healthcare crafted. • I think it's time to show the world how diverse PCOS is. We are thin. Fat. Tall. Clear skin. Acne. Short. Young. Old. We have lumps and bumps and scars. Beautiful. We aren't broken. The viewpoint of what PCOS looks like is. • we need to end the stigma of what PCOS looks like and SHOW them what pcos looks like. • So let's do it. Let's start showing them who we are. • Tell your story. Be proud of who you are. Demand to be seen. Make them listen. Share your pcos story and tag #myPCOSbody and let's show the damn world how beautiful we all are.
We can all relate to feeling this way in a bathing suit. But Shelby decided it was more important to set an example for her daughter than to give in to her insecurities. Why?
“Because she is learning, every day, from me just how to view her OWN body. I don’t want to teach her to put limitations on what clothes she can wear or to worry about what others will think. I certainly want her to see her body as unique and wonderful and to be kind to it. I want her to always stay the brave, bold blonde little girl who knows exactly what she wants and exactly how beautiful and strong she is. The same little girl I used to be, before life and society taught me I shouldn’t be.”
|| I like me || some days, you have to be your own biggest fan. Pep talk yo damn self like, "hello you are a freaking goddess. You are doing amazing things. Who cares what others say because I'm really fucking proud of who you are becoming, okay? Don't be sad, you got shit to do. Love you boo bear. Keep slayin alllll day." • • But for real, now more so than ever as I evolve I realize women who aggressively support and encourage and uplift each other, DESPITE differences, GET. SHIT. DONE. and I'm gonna stick to hangin around those types. So you just stay over there throwin shade, I'll be soakin in the sun of getting shit done. Because I like me enough to know it doesn't matter one fucking bit if YOU like me or not. If you don't, you're wrong and I'm sorry. But hey- we all can't have good taste. ✌🏻 ❤️ 🍕 and this bad ass shirt is once again from @hawkfitnessapparel ! I say it every time but this is my new favorite from them hands down
A-fucking-men. I was diagnosed with PCOS (polycystic ovarian syndrome) myself three years ago, after two years of endless tests for thyroid and hormonal imbalances and no periods. I watched my body expand, dimple, and bloat in ways it never had before. To be honest, it’s enough to make me want to wear a potato sack and not leave the house some days. I even hate wearing a bathing suit around the women in my own family, because I feel somehow less than. But I’ll be damned if I ever let my daughter hear me beat myself up about my body and what I can’t control. I will flop and wobble around with her in the pool until we’re both wrinkled and blue — to hell what anyone else thinks.
“I felt empowered wearing the bikini knowing that I’m showing my daughter it’s okay to be comfortable in your own skin,” Shelby tells Scary Mommy. “It’s okay to embrace your body — even when others tell you not to.”
Shelby ended her post by letting us know she and her daughter bought their bikinis and had a ball. “We rushed home, we played and spent the afternoon excited about how we’d be mermaids tomorrow. And we tried on our bikinis. Like the brave, bold beautiful blondes we are.”