How to love that body part you love to hate

You all know what I’m talking about. That part of your body that your eyes fall to the moment you’re in front of the mirror. It’s the body part you grab and look at from side to side. The part you analyze with frustration and disgust. It’s the one you’ve considered “fixing” or wish would magically “fix” itself. It’s the one that you think would make your clothes look better if it were different. Certainly a bathing suit would look better. It’s that part you love to hate.

Believe it or not, that body part that you love to hate is so IMPORTANT. Becoming friends with that part of your body is a major key to you opening your heart in other important ways.

I know the depth of sadness you are feeling. Wouldn’t you like it to be over? If not magically overnight, then wouldn’t you like to move your thinking in the right direction? It isn’t your body that needs to change. It’s you. So here’s how to do it.

1. You must stop consuming negative body-image media. Fashion and gossip magazines have to be purged from your life fully. Be very careful about what types of tv shows you are watching. If watching the women on the program is making you feel critical of yourself, you must turn away from it, even if you like the plot of the show! Commercials are especially sneaky. Do you allow yourself to passively watch commercials about skin rejuvenating cream that talk about wrinkles as though they are a skin disease? Weight loss commercials that repeat the words “Ugly Fat” four times in one minute? ¬†Don’t fall prey to this madness! As soon as you spot it, get it out of your life!

2. As soon as you feel that negative energy I want you to turn away and physically with your arms push that energy back from you. Imagine yourself pushing it away like pushing water away from your waist. If that negativity has already crept inside of you I want you to imagine you are taking it out balling it up like a newspaper and and throwing it away. Don’t let that energy inside of you at all. This might sound a bit crazy but that is Satan’s energy! Only the Devil would make God’s beautiful people believe they are ugly. Satan has done so much damage to God’s people and we are seduced into allowing him inside of us all the time. Don’t let him in.

3. Praise. Daily you must praise the part you struggle with. How can you show gratitude for that body part? Because certainly that part of your body is working hard for you in some way. The daily praise will begin to heal you. It won’t happen overnight but I PROMISE you will feel better right now if you can come up with five things you appreciate about your _____.

4. See the beauty. This can take longer to achieve. But with daily praise to all that that body part does for you, perhaps one day you can even extend the virtue of beauty to that part. How is it beautiful? Could it possibly be?

I pray for your journey and continued healing.

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Experience the love of your creator

The main purpose of life is to live rightly, think rightly, act rightly. The soul must languish when we give all our thought to the body.
Mohandas Gandhi

I agree that the soul languishes when we give all our thought to the body.

The looks of disdain, the grabbing of flesh. Talking bad about yourself with friends as an act of female bonding. It’s abusive.¬†Eating disorders, exercising disorders, how about the “I’m-an-Average-American-Woman-so-I’m-supposed-to-hate-some-part-of-my-body” disorders? These are body problems, but at a deeper level they are soul problems.

It doesn’t have to be this way. We can be fully ALIVE and HEALTHY people appreciating every God-given part of a body that we use to travel this earth.

It is such a MIRACLE that you and I are here. If you think about all of the choices throughout all man-kind that somehow brought your mother and father together in a night of passion on that very month where you were conceived. YOUR PRESENCE HERE IS A TRUE MIRACLE. Any other month, and it wouldn’t be you. It’s the Lottery of the universe right? And you won. Bingo!

Every step of the way miracles happened as you were formed within your mother’s womb. Getting the eyes just right, and the ears, and the heart and lungs. If you live in a healthy body PRAISE GOD and then PRAISE GOD once again! It is a miracle. For you, it all fell into place. Praise God.

Then by the gift of God you were born from your mother’s womb with a body that was a blueprint form ready to grow and change to carry you through your years of life. Praise God for the body that continued to grow and change in health.

Do you give one thought to your lungs as they gather breath? To your heart and blood as it brings oxygen to your cells? To your hormones as they ready your womb? I don’t. But if we spent a little more time being thankful and grateful for all that our bodies do for us without even asking. Giving to us and giving to us every single day. Wow.

I know that when my daughter hands me a picture she’s worked hard on, I’m so pleased to see her drawing of herself and of me and her I Luv my MoMMy scrawled across the top. It would never occur to me to hyper-obsess about some perceived flaw in her drawing. I know if I looked hard enough and often enough I could find so many things “wrong” with the picture! She mispelled Love, her lines have no symmetry, she colored the rainbow the wrong order of colors, the sun is totally out of place…But that would be ridiculous! And wouldn’t that be missing the ultimate point of the whole thing?

I sometimes wonder how God feels. All of these beautiful women he created, billions. Such beautiful work and artistry in each one. And so many cry every single night because their ___ isn’t just so. I imagine God is a little frustrated and sad.

Today, please take a step back. See the whole picture. Appreciate all that you are. You are a work of art. Bask in the love of your creator as He formed you every step of the way.

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This is a Woman

The creator of the popular website Shape of a Mother has created a new body-image site called This is a Woman. I love it because it isn’t just for women who’ve had children or are directly in the childbearing stage of life. Rather it is for ALL women young and old.

I’ll tell my own story for a bit here and share that one of the most profound healing body-image moments for me was when I saw the movie Who’s Life Is It Anyway? starring Richard Dreyfuss. In the film after he has become paralyzed he has dreams of his ballerina girlfriend and there is this whole scene of her dancing naked. That was the very first time that I had ever seen a flat-chested woman naked (other than myself), and the fact that she was the object of his sexual desire made me feel for the first time that my body might appear very beautiful to the opposite sex.

While I think it is very healing to see non-sexualized pictures of women, the fact remains that we want to be beautiful…to men. There is a part in all of us that wants affirmation that our shape inspires a man’s lust.

So many young women are getting breast implants today because they fear that they are not sexy without them. Some even believe that they are deformed if they have one breast a little larger than the other, or underdeveloped if they have less than a B or A cup. But this isn’t true. All of the above are in the range of normal healthy breasts. And there are lots of men who prefer small breasted women.

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Negative Breast talk, National Geographic, and fruit

I was just at a park day playgroup with some lovely friends of mine, and one of the moms began to jokingly talk about how her son “ruined” her breasts and that she’s all “National Geographic” now. Rather than having the moms chime in with comments affirming her beauty and that she looked just great, there were comments more along the lines of “well you can fix that, just don’t go all vulgar” which I am assuming means go ahead and go under the knife, just don’t get super huge ones.

[Enter disappointed heart.]

See, the thing is, we have a problem in our society with accepting that things change and supporting each other through these changes. The body was never meant to stay exactly the same throughout our lifetime. Our bodies have been in a state of constant change since birth. And specifically for women as we go through the stages of puberty, pregnancies, postpartum, and menopause, our bodies are always changing! For some reason we accept this as good/positive all up until the moment that we trade in the appreciation for function for a hyper-focus on form. Something has happened specifically with breasts in the last 20 years that a narrower and narrower “form” of breast is considered beautiful. There are very few women these days who can say with a joyful heart “I love my breasts. They are beautiful.”

This was not always the case. Just as there are many many different forms of flower, there are many different forms that the breast takes, each beautiful and unique. There is a really neat article written in 1997 for Cosmopolitan magazine called “I never met a breast I didn’t like” where the writer (a male) talks about an experience when he was a young boy of discovering a magazine (probably published by some produce association) that featured dozens of cute happy women wearing sweaters. Underneath the picture was a saying such as “Cherries. Make a man’s heart sing with joy” or “Nectarines: Tender and sweet” or “Apples. Always keep you satisfied”. This guy took notice from a very early age that there are lots of different kinds of “fruit” out there, each with a special and wonderful quality.

Our breasts have special and wonderful qualities no matter what size or shape our “fruit” is. If they are in the process of providing milk for a baby, they are very literally sweet with the milk that is made. And if they are pre-breastfeeding breasts or post-breastfeeding breasts then they are wonderful for how they are made by our creator.

Breasts do not make up the total package of a woman. A woman is a whole package person from top to bottom. Men have been saying this for years.

As women WE need to broaden our scope of what makes a beautiful breast to include all of our sisters. A breast that sags is not a broken or ugly breast that needs fixing. It is a breast that’s been warmed by a man’s touch, given strength to the young, a breast that has wisdom and experience and beauty. All it needs is some appreciation.

Here are some real “National Geographic” women, and I think they look pretty awesome if you ask me!

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Girls, you’re going to have small boobs

The title pretty much says it all. Daughters of mine, I am proud to bestow upon you a lifetime of very little cleavage. If you end up having some, it will be due to either a weird genetic mishap or the combination of hormones and endocrine disruptive chemicals in our environment that have made you have an early and productive puberty. (I hope this isn’t the case!)

But dear daughters, this is what I want you to know about having small breasts. They’re fabulous.

That is my little secret.

For some reason, the world is currently obsessed with large breasts to the point that women and girls with lovely small breasts are cutting theirs and mutilating their body for larger ones. Please don’t do this dear daughters. Love and cherish your beautiful small breasts.

Small breasts are elegant and proud. They carry much sweetness in a dainty package. They never hurt when you exercise. They never become the focus of people’s interactions with you. They will do a perfect job at providing milk for your children (I never had milk-supply problems). When you are finished nursing, they keep their shape quite well.

Small breasts are beautiful and sexy and I hope you’ll love yours. Because God made you and God is the supreme artist.

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Ok, ok I’ll just start

I’ve been wanting to start this for a looooooong time. Very long. But I haven’t because I keep trying to figure out the perfect way to say what I want to say, and the perfect format. The problem with this is that I’m not a perfect writer (so what I have to say will NEVER come out perfect), nor am I particularly good with websites/design etc…

But here we are and time marches on, and I realize that I’ve just got to start…something. Some conversation. Something for my daughters because they are growing up in a world very different from mine, and yet I thought the world I grew up in was pretty difficult. There’s is harder.

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