So Worth Loving

One Size Fits All

I am not a fan of shopping, but when the time comes where I actually have more than five dollars in my wallet, I prefer to sit in my sweatpants and ripped-up tee and shop on my beat up laptop.

As I am shopping, I see a very nice and flowy shirt, and bolded underneath:

One size fits all.

The model who is wearing this shirt is probably close to the size of my arm so how on earth is a top supposed to fit me like it does her?

But if they say it does, then I will believe them.  

So I can actually wear a top that is the same size as a girl who has that ‘perfect look’ that I’ve wanted for so long. I can match a model! I can kind of think I’m skinny!

But I have to be real. I’m not skinny. If I am skinny, my butt is too distracting to see any tiny qualities I may possess.

  • And it’s time to be okay with that.

If Sir Mix A lot digs big booties, then so do I.

Anyway,

To make a long story short, that top didn’t fit me like the model. I’m sure you saw that coming anyway.

Because there isn’t one size that fits all.

We are all so beautiful and breathtaking in our own unique ways, that we should be offended that companies would want to generalize our wonderful shapes into one sack-like top.

Our beauty is far beyond the hold of fabric.

So if you’re disappointed that you can’t fit into that size like a model can, it’s because that model can’t pull off a size that you can ROCK.

Love you. Love your body.

Written and loved on by Karlye Hayes

When The Dress Doesn’t Fit

It’s perfect. It is PERFECT. Just have to find my size…

I am bursting with excitement and grinning from ear to ear as I sift through the rack of dresses, searching for my size. I am always searching for my size, the right size. YES! I hold the dress up and look at the tag. I tried this exact same dress on two months ago and it’s finally on sale. It fit beautifully, hugging all the right places and graciously flowing over the wrong ones.With the black high heeled pumps and that silver necklace…I am mentally styling a dress I haven’t even purchased yet. I need to see it on again, just to know if I need to buy new shoes also.

I get pleased looks from sales people as I make my way to the fitting rooms in the back of the store. By the time I get there I can barely contain myself. It takes almost no time for me to strip out of my winter layers and step into the gorgeous dress hanging on the wall in front of me. I feel its silky texture, and run my fingers over the beaded embellishment near the sweetheart neckline.

I’m smiling and looking into the mirror, trying to zip up the dress, when suddenly….it just stops. The zipper stops. It must be stuck. I wiggle it, move it around, and finally turn to look at it in the floor length mirror. It’s not a piece of thread stuck in the zipper that’s stopping it from going up, it’s my sides.

My love handles.

The fabric around my hips is pulled tight to the point of tearing. My ample curves leave absolutely nothing to the imagination. My bust is spilling over and stretching the seams of the pretty top. The dress doesn’t fit.

I quickly undo the little zipping I had managed and look at the tag. I was this size two months ago. I’ve gained more weight? I think, as I look at myself with fresh eyes. I’m staring at the five feet, two inch tall body of a college senior who has succumbed to many late night, junk food-filled study sessions. It is as if I am seeing my scantily clad body for the first time. My dimpled thighs and full hips, my round tummy and stretch marked waist. Every imperfection is magnified in my tear filled eyes. My head begins to pound and my heart begins to race. I drop the too small dress to the floor and stare at my body with complete disgust. The tears are falling hot and heavy now, pulsing down my humiliated face in waves of defeat and anguish.

“Do you need help zipping up?” the sales lady asks from behind the closed door. “Um…no thank you! It didn’t look right…” I stutter as I reluctantly pull on my gigantic jeans and wipe away the tears from my heated cheeks.

I emerge from the dressing room and hastily hang the stupid dress on the rack. I shuffle out of the store just quick enough to avoid the nice sales assistant, and pull my hood up just in time to hide the fresh tears that are spilling down my face. I am devastated.

We’ve all had these moments, times when our bodies seem like the enemy. Times when all we want to do is crawl under a blanket and forget we even tried the dress on in the first place. Maybe it was your jeans from last summer that won’t button, or that one shirt you absolutely LOVE that’s squeezing your arms a little too much.

We’ve all felt the disappointment and the shame, the self-loathing and pain that comes with momentarily hating your body. It’s in those moments we wish we were someone else, someone with more self-control and better genes. Someone who ran instead of ate ice cream, and chose a banana over a brownie.

  • It’s in those moments that we forget how beautiful we are, and how precious, how loved and cherished our souls and bodies are. It’s in these moments that we forget we were created perfectly, intentionally, with purpose and passion, and that no amount of weight gained will ever change that.

It’s in those moments that we have to take a good, long, hard look inside ourselves and remember that we all have flaws. We are all imperfectly perfect, trying to make the very best of what we’ve been given, and learning to love the parts of us we’d rather hide.

It’s in those moments that you must remember that within you is a seed of greatness that needs to be watered and carefully cared for.

It needs you to whisper sweet words of encouragement and sincerity, and water it with love and kindness when society is polluting your soil with lies and judgment. That seed needs positivity, your positivity, to beat down on the earth above like sunlight, and draw its soft core out into the open. Your inner light that shines will help that seed to grow into something rare, something beautiful and pure that only exists inside of you. You will begin to bloom and produce fruit of love that will draw others to you, and bare leaves that blow those sweet words of life toward the seeds buried deep within the pain of self-hatred in others. Your roots will sink deep into your soul, and become the truth that holds you firm when storms of self-consciousness beat at your back and attempt to overturn you.

So in those moments - when the dress doesn’t fit, when he doesn’t love you back, when you get an F on that test, when you don’t know which way is up, when you cannot remember what makes you unique, and special, and beautiful- remember that you are loved.

You are loved unconditionally, incessantly and perfectly.

And remember that you are beautiful, even if the dress doesn’t show it. 

Written and loved on by Daniah Miller

My Body is Beautiful

It was just a typical Thursday. A day scheduled full, class and rehearsal and gym and homework.

I was standing in my dance theory class, shoulder-to-shoulder with my classmates as we circled up in the center of the room, all the desks pushed back against the walls.

We had a guest lecturer that day, a performance artist who used her dance background to create art that challenged political, social, and cultural norms. She spoke to us about her training, how she started making performance art, what she hoped her work did. And then she told us, I want to you to try. Let’s explore a bit.

So we did. We found ourselves there, shoulder-to-shoulder.

“I’m going to say a phrase, and I want you to complete it. Whatever comes to mind. Just spit it out. Ready? Performance is…

We stood, shoulder-to-shoulder, throwing out words, nervously, quickly, quietly, loudly. We nodded and laughed and smiled.

“Performance is…Performance is not…I dance because…Dancing is…Dancing is not…My body is not…”

beautiful.

  • My body is not beautiful.

 

That was the sentence that filled my mind. My body is not beautiful.

I stood there, confused. My body is not beautiful? How could that be the way I completed the phrase, that first word that I grasped out of my consciousness?

You see, my body and I have a long history. There’s been hate, there’s been anger and harsh words. There’s been not-good-enough and not-skinny-enough and not-pretty-enough and not-strong-enough. And lately, slowly, persistently, there’s been love. And acceptance. And deciding, declaring, believing that I am beautiful. That I am enough. That I am loved, that I am worth loving, no matter what.

So why was that the only thing I could think?

My body is not beautiful.

Because years of believing that beautiful is tall, skinny, flawless, not-me – those years don’t erase quickly. Because that lie has burrowed deep, deep down into my soul.

When I look in the mirror, the first thing I spot is whatever is wrong with me.

And I am tired of that. I am so, so tired of that. I’m tired of my default being not beautiful. I’m tired of that lie owning my life. I’m tired of letting other people define my worth in sizes.

Beauty is not paint-by-numbers. Beauty does not have a single definition. Or rather, it does: You.

You are beautiful.

So I will shout from the rooftops, whisper into my reflection, ink on page after page: my body is beautiful.

I will repeat it to myself, day by day by day, until it is as steady as the beat of my heart. Until it replaces the lies.

  • Until it is the only thing I believe.

My body is beautiful.

My body is beautiful.

Written and loved on by:

-Hannah Boning