On beauty and self-love

I’ve spent quite a bit of time deliberating whether or not to write this blog post, and if I did, how much to write. In the end I decided that I wanted to, because ultimately I’d like to live in a society where it’s okay to have these conversations publicly, without judgement. I’d like these ideas to be acceptable, without being subject to discrimination. And I’d like to share an important part of who I am with people who are interested in my life (i.e., you guys). So here goes.

A few days ago, I had just finished one of Trevor’s tremendous Circus Conditioning classes. I had worked really hard that morning, pushing myself until I was glistening with sweat, yet smiling in my heart. I got to Beth’s place and jumped in the (cold) shower, and when I got out to dry myself, I was caught aback by my reflection. In all humility, I had never seen myself look so beautiful in all my life. I stood there for a long moment, amazed at how young and fit and healthy I was.

Let me say that I know very well that the body is just a bag of meat that carries our consciousness around. I know that some day, probably soon, my fitness will start to decline and I will not be so healthy and beautiful. I could get hit by a car today, become horribly mangled, and then watch as all my muscles atrophy during a slow convalescence. So I can say with some degree of honesty that I am not attached to this body.

But that does not stop me from loving it.

 

I don’t know how this entry is going to be received. In truth, I’m scared of being perceived as vain, or that too many people with body-image issues will not understand why I’m writing this. But hell, there isn’t enough acceptance of self-love in the world. Too many people look in the mirror and see faults, their mind full of criticism and rejection. I want more people to realise that it’s okay to love yourself, exactly as you are, regardless of what shape your body happens to be in. Although I consider myself very fit, and even beautiful, I think I would love my body just as much if I were overweight or had characteristics this society deems as unattractive. I might be sad that my body was unhealthy due to my lifestyle choices, but if I was born a certain way beyond my capacity of influence, then I would love and accept myself for being the lovable, deserving person that I am.

I asked Beth to take a photo of me after the shower. Not because I’m especially vain, and not because I’m particularly attached to my body, but because I looked beautiful and I want to remember that. I am also highly conscious that I’m posting a picture of myself mostly naked, but I don’t want to let “fear of rejection or humiliation” stop me from loving myself, and sharing the important message of self-love with others. Plus I’ve always admired people who have the courage to publicly share intimate pictures of themselves. It’s a bloody scary thing being so vulnerable, and it takes great strength of character to not fear the judgements of others. So here’s a picture of me in a towel.

Peace out everyone.

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