Let's say that you haven't seen me since the diagnoses....upon seeing me the scenario will probably go something like this. "Eeee, hiiiii (squealing in between)." I say hey, how are you? (in the midst of a huge embrace) Then you might push me away from you as to get a better look at my whole body. Then the inevitable comes..."how are you feeling?" And before I can answer you, you take the space where I am suppose to answer with, "well, you look great?" I put a question mark there because it always seems like those words come out with such surprise and confusion. Then there is a look that some have given me. I don't know how to quite put the exact words to it, but every woman has experienced it. When you know you look good and a woman gives you a compliment that you look great, but her eyes are more like daggers of jealousy that ask "how" or "why" do you look so damn good. Let me explain where I am going with this...wait, I can't because I don't really know what I am trying to say. Let me give you a couple extremes that have come my way to put me in a confusing state. When a couple different women (friends) have said, "maybe I should get MS so I can look that good." Or, "I don't want what you have, but you have a rockin body". These are compliments right? At every point in my life I have always been very confident and happy with what my body looked like (minus, right after baby insanity moments;) As a woman, I know that we tend to take our eyes off our own plate A LOT, but have we become so out of touch with reality that we would wish a sickness, (like when someone gets the flu and gets all skinny), or a disease on ourselves with careless words. I don't feel mad when people say these things because I know where they are coming from. I am glad that I am confusing their vision of what MS is suppose to do, or might do to me. But we really need to take more care with our thoughts of ourselves and words with others. When was the last time that you paid a compliment to yourself? When was the last time you liked looking at a picture of yourself? If you can't remember the last time, then you may want to pay attention to what kind of self talk you're giving yourself to be that unhappy with your healthy body. Maybe you have been living so long in who you WANT to be instead of appreciating who you ARE! I wished many times that I would care more about food and get healthier one day. My wish totally came true and this is the path that needed to take me there. I truly am thankful for this wish....but many of you might want to be careful what you are wishing for. Take control of your thoughts and be who you want to be!
I remember taking these pictures for Jake for Valentine's Day 6 months after Jamie was born. Shannon was just starting out in photography and we went to go take shots of each other. In that whole process I remember realizing how much the pictures were for me and not Jake by the end.The experience was uplifting and exciting. I was proud of the body that I had and even embraced the huge nursing bra showing through because I knew that one day those big girls might disappear. Let's be realistic here...I am still a girl and I haven't been 100% content my whole life about each body (I do have an ego and I did want a boob job), but I think what I was able to grasp that many others don't was that no matter how much I love or dislike my shape, I know it will always be changing. If I can't embrace it for it is in any given moment, then I am not embracing me. I loved my body a year ago when it was 20 some pounds heavier and didn't want to lose the weight. I will take your 20 extra pounds and you can gladly take the MS. I just hope it has the same wake-up call that it gave me. If it doesn't then you're just going to be skinny, but still unhappy.
So go get some pictures taken of yourself! Love your body for keeping you alive and healthy, because it might not be that way tomorrow! I have taken some recent pics to celebrate, yet another phase of life and I can honestly say that I love my body and I'm not afraid to say it, because that isn't for anyone else to discredit. I love my body for waking me up. I love it for allowing me to play volleyball, take care of my kids, wrestle Jake, tie my shoes, walk straight and I even love the tingling all over...because it's me. So yes...I look good....because I feel good. And for the days that I might not feel good, at least I don't have the extra negative thought swirling around about not being content in my own skin. Thanks for the ranting!