Photography: Tara Moore Photography.
Looking back now, it’s hard to believe that one little word could cause such pain, such anxiety, such damage. But words are powerful. Especially when it comes to the mind of a child.
Three letters, three simple letters, that if used differently, hinder no pain or hurt. But placed together, and said in my presence, caused me to flinch in such a way that it wouldn’t matter if it was directed at me or not, I always assumed it was.
The scars are deep, and they never really leave. So much so, that when I first became a mother, I instilled a rule in my house that the ‘F word’ was forbidden. Not too unusual, right? Except it’s not the ‘F word’ that you are probably expecting.
I told my girls that the word FAT was a swear word, and that it was not to be said in my house. Writing this now, I realize how extreme that is, how irrational. But as a young woman of 26, I was still bearing the scars of my childhood. Still battling to accept and love the body I was in. I thought that the worst thing that anyone could possibly think about me, let alone say, was that I was Fat.
I realize now, almost 10 years on, to be thought of as Fat, is far from the worst thing that people could think about me. After years of re-training my brain to not fear this word, and understanding why I had such a strong reaction to it, was all part of the healing. Older and wiser now, with more life experience and of course being a mum, my values run far deeper than how I look.
I began thinking about my purpose in life, my reason for being. Not surprisingly, it had very little, if not nothing, to do with how I looked. And instead had everything to do with how I made people feel. Living true to my values was not affected by the size of my jeans or by my weight on the scales, nor did it affect my ability to be a good and kind person. Things that I value far more than how I look.
I soon came to understand that I need not fear the word Fat, I can instead embrace it. I can make it mean whatever I want it to. I am in charge of the way I feel about myself, and by fearing this word, I carried a burden with me, everywhere I went. And even more important, I was passing this burden along to my daughters. A burden they need not carry, a burden which no one need carry.
That little Fat girl, whom I still remember crying herself to sleep, she’s with me every day, she’s part of who I am. But by redefining what the word Fat means to me, I took my power back and I am not scared of it anymore. Our lives are a journey, our bodies will change and evolve. I refuse to live the rest of my life afraid of a word, just a three letter word.
Here are three things that you can do right now, to start your journey of loving and accepting YOUR body ~
1. Define your values, and choose one that you will focus on this week.
2. Write a Gratitude List about your Body i.e. I am grateful for my arms because I can cuddle my girls.
3. Get Grounded! Go out in Nature, take your shoes off and feel the ground under your feet.
My passion to help women love and accept their bodies, comes from a place of deep compassion, helping and supporting girls to do the same, is my purpose.
Love Bianca x
Ps ~ Keep an eye out for upcoming BODY POSITIVITY WORKSHOPS, or Book your own BODY POSITIVITY COACHING session via my website.