The Physicality of Womanhood
I’ve been thinking a lot lately about what it means to be a woman.
From a practical, adultish perspective, I would like to think a woman has her shit together. She makes the bank to pay the rent. She hustles. She budgets. She’s independent, without any kind of second income from a partner necessary. She has GOALS.
From a more internal point of view, a woman is confident. She has a strong sense of self and love for her being. She emits a positive energy that helps her manifest and nurture strong relationships. She is POWERFUL.
But as I’m learning, there are some real physical aspects inherently involved in embracing and accepting your womanhood.
This realization has been a thought I have been holding onto rather closely as of late. As a result of fueling my body in a much more intuitive manner and exercising in ways that are building muscle and strength, I have noticed a few dramatic changes in my body. My natural body type is more of “pear” shape, you might say – I tend to be much more petite on the upper half of my frame, and then curvier in my butt and thighs. And with the healthy lifestyle changes I have made over the past year, this natural shape has become more pronounced in my perspective.
For as long as I can remember now, I have held the distorted view that a more thin, lanky frame was superior. I wanted my clothes to drape over my body like a hanger, and the thought of having a big butt TERRIFIED me. I felt a sense of pride when friends or family referred to be as “little” or “tiny.” All of these thoughts were perpetuated by images I was exposing myself to in magazines, social media and television of “fitspo” and fashion models, images I was desperately seeking to identify with and emulate. Images that created an insecure, lifeless version of myself.
And reversing this mindset has not happened over night as I continue along my path of recovery; at least once a month, I find myself in a bit of a panic over this new, curvier body I am now inhabiting. A body I have had to buy new clothes for. A body I am learning to accept when I catch my reflection in the mirror. A body I once never thought I could possibly accept.
But also a body that is now strong.
A body that has arms to lift itself up for planks in yoga class.
A body that has thighs to hold itself up on a spin bike or hike up a mountain.
A body with a butt that fills out my jeans or that form-fitting dress.
A body with stretch marks and cellulite that give me character, that show where I have been in my life and that will help take me to the next chapter.
A body that is sexy.
A body that is currently changing in such a vibrant and empowered way to match the WOMAN I am becoming with each passing day.
It’s been a journey. Honestly, some days I long for the bony, shapeless body I once had..but those days are few and far between anymore. More days are spent learning to adapt my mind alongside my body. Learning to truly bid farewell to my “girlish” frame of the past, and instead embrace the womanly being of my future.
"My mission should I choose to accept it, is to find peace with exactly who and what I am. To take pride in my thoughts, my appearance, my talents, my flaws and to stop worrying this incessant worrying that I can't be loved as I am." (Anais Nin)