“That’s Inappropriate” blogger and mom of three is done being critical of her looks
How many of you look at yourself every day and criticize you appearance? My arms are “too flabby.” My thighs rub together. My stomach is squishy. My stretch marks are ugly. Maybe you pull back the corners of your eyes, see wrinkles and think I look old. How many of you are totally over this form of self punishment, but can’t seem to stop? Well, one mom has found a solution to these so-called problems and it has nothing to do with a diet, hair dye, wrinkle creams, or an excruciating fitness routine.
“When I was in my early twenties I was super critical of my body. I was never satisfied with my looks. I wanted to be thinner, tighter, and I wanted breast implants,” Masony writes. “Now that I’m 36, I have to laugh. I wasn’t able to appreciate my body back then. I think part of that was because I didn’t really know who I was. I was insecure and lacked confidence.”
I’m sure many of us would like to bitch slap our younger selves for thinking our bodies were shit back in the day. We never feel good enough. And then motherhood hits.
“Over the past 12 years my body has drastically changed,” she writes. “I have had three children and four surgeries.
“My nipples have been eviscerated by breastfeeding. My tummy looks a bit Frankensteinish. I have cellulite and stretch marks.”
Many of us have a similar story. We had babies. And for some, those babies changed our bodies in irreversible and permanent ways. In ways that don’t jive with our culture’s wrongful obsession with unattainable and absurd beauty standards. How can being changed by motherhood, by giving life, feel so bad?
Even with our trusted partners, we feel ashamed. Masony says she used to hate when her husband would squeeze her waist or thighs when they were in bed together.
“I would cringe if he wanted to leave the lights on. I was so afraid of my imperfections being seen.”
And while motherhood does a number on our bodies, so does aging. Many women flock to wrinkle creams, lasers, nips, tucks, and hair color to hide what our body is doing naturally. And Masony isn’t about that life.
She says while she was getting ready for church last week she looked in the mirror and saw a sea of gray in her hair. Instead of freaking out and sprinting to her local hair salon she did something radical: she accepted it. Even loved it.
“I thought, ‘I’ve earned this. I’m OK with this,'” she writes. “I am so happy that I am now able to embrace those imperfections and welcome these changes.”
“You can learn to love yourself. You can learn to find happiness,” she writes. “If you are struggling please know that you are not alone. Your insecurities do not need to rule your life. You are enough. You are beautiful. Your imperfections make you amazing. They make you strong. They make you courageous and unstoppable.”
“The best thing I ever did for myself was find myself. If you are lost, I promise you are still in there. Keep searching,” she writes. “Take the time to listen to the voice in your head and give yourself the benefit of the doubt. You are enough. You are beautiful. You are perfectly imperfect.”