Beauty is personal

It’s summertime, but that hasn’t always meant the living is easy.

For years, rising temperatures meant even more thoughts of body insecurity.

With so much skin on display, I couldn’t help but compare myself to others. Inevitably, I found something to be unsatisfied with.

However, this past year has been revolutionary for me. I confronted many fears that previously plagued me. As a result, I’ve become stronger and more confident.

Although I knew how far I’d come, I couldn’t help but be anxious about the start of bikini season.

In Germany, I was able to mostly evade the issue: Cool temperatures made my wardrobe more dresses and cardigans than swimsuits and short-shorts.

Since getting back to the states, however, temperatures have been hitting more than 100 degrees nearly every day. Fear of heat stroke, brought me face-to-face with my old fears.

So far, I dealt well with situations that would have previously upset me.

But, the real test came yesterday, when I went to Oceans of Fun.

The day started off when my boy came over for breakfast.

Consumed: Cooked oats, one peach, small spoonful of cream cheese, agave nectar, vanilla and cinnamon.

After fueling up, we met up with Rebecca and her boyfriend to drive to Kansas City.

Upon arriving at the park, the sun was shining, there wasn’t a cloud in sight and the lines were moderately short. It was all the makings of a good time.

The only obstacle was stripping my cover-up.

With contained hesitation, I peeled off my dress, put it in a locker and turned around to face a crowd of thousands of people.

“Will they notice my fill-on-the-blank flaw?” I wondered…

But, there was no time to dwell in concern, as we made a beeline for the cool water.

From that point out, I spent the rest of the day having fun. In a swimsuit. In public.

I realized, among the crowd, I was just one of many.

Some girls probably had better fill-in-the-blank than me, but that wasn’t the point. The real goal was to have a good time. To achieve that, it didn’t matter how thin my thighs were or how flat my stomach was.

I left the park feeling more confident in myself and more fulfilled in the journey I’ve taken. It all made me realize that…

It may not be perfect, but every part of my body serves a purpose. I have strength. I have energy. I have beauty, if I believe I do.

Wiped out from a combination of heat and epiphanies, I was happy to spend the night at home.

Before relaxing too much, I first had to refuel that strong, energized body of mine.

Consumed: Apricot-ginger tofu, prepared by cubing and pressing tofu, marinating it in apricot-ginger sauce and baking in 400 degree oven for 20 minutes (stirring up after 10 minutes). Also consumed were sweet potato oven-fries, balsamic sautéed green beans and honey mustard.

Since we were just so darn active during the day, I also whipped up an impromptu batch of guacamole to share with the boy.

I’d watched my mom make guacamole many times. But, I’d never actually made it before. I threw together what I had, and hoped my taste-tester would approve.

It may not be beautiful, but it sure was delicious!

Ingredients:

  • 1 ripe avocado
  • 1/4 C finely diced onion
  • Zest of one lime
  • Approximately 2 T fresh lime juice
  • 1 T chopped cilantro
  • 1/4 C salsa
  • 1/4 t cumin

Directions:

  • Mash everything together and then eat, preferably with chips (or a spoon).

Finally ready to vacate the kitchen, I spent the rest of the night happy with my boy, happy with my body and happy with my wonderful life.

Temperatures were still hovering above 90 degrees. But, the fact that I was more worried about the cooling bill than body insecurity was a success I’m glad to deal with.

Question: What are you grateful that your body can do?

My body propels me to run and gives me the energy to be active.

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11 responses to “Beauty is personal

  • Erin

    Hello! I just discovered your blog, and I think I’m going to fall in love with it!

    Oceans of Fun, awwww. I grew up in Council Bluffs, Iowa, so many times we’d drive to Kansas City and go to Worlds/Oceans of Fun. Great memories! I miss the Midwest so much.

    And you know… at Oceans of Fun (in the 8th grade), I wasn’t worried one bit about how I looked in a bathing suit. Hmm. I didn’t think about it until I hit college, I would say.

    I’m grateful that my body can walk for miles and miles and miles… I used to be a running, but it was tough on my knees, so I’ve decided to be a bit more gentle with it. 🙂

    See you around!

  • lizzyj1305

    hey girlie!!
    LOVE this post! you rocked it, so glad you had an awesome time! 🙂
    I am so thankful my body allows(and wants) me to always be moving!
    I hope you enjoy the last bit of your weekend!
    xoxo!

  • Jess

    I am grateful that I have legs that can help me jump, run, walk, hop, etc!

    Way to go rocking that swimsuit!!
    ❤ jess
    xoxo

  • sophia

    I love that my body can eat, digest, and poop. It is such a beautiful, wonderful, enjoyable cycle, isn’t it? Even the last part. 😉

    Beautiful post, by the way. The wicked truth is that nobody is actually even caring about you…because everyone is too busy caring about THEIR own flaws! Talk about irony…heh.

  • Angela (the diet book junkie)

    it’s funny how that works. so many women struggle to feel comfortable in a bathing suit (myself included) yet when you go to the beach, NO BODY is perfect! even on the beaches of Australia 🙂

    thanks for sharing the recipe, my husband’s been buggin me to make guacamole too!

  • Jessica @ lacesandlattes

    Wow! I just was at a water park with some guy friends and I had the same negative self talk. But instead of comparing myself, I focused on having a fun time and enjoying having a healthy body because confidence is beautiful. 🙂

    Thank you for the post!

  • 2010 in review «

    […] Overcoming fear of bikini season: “Beauty is personal.” […]

  • Bikini body confidence «

    […] But, you know what, I think that sometimes we tell ourselves it doesn’t fit just so that we have an excuse. In reality, the most important thing about rocking a swimsuit isn’t about the way it accentuates your butt — it’s about feeling good, having fun and letting go of body anxiety. […]

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