I spent years at war with my body.
At the time, I believed the war was external, caught up within numbers on scales, clothing brands and measurements. My value, my worth, and my life seemed to fluctuate with the rise and fall of numbers that nobody knew, or honestly cared about, except for me.
As it turns out my war was much more internal than it was ever external. The war we wage with ourselves over our bodies isn’t something that happens on the outside; it’s something that is happening on our insides. This all-out war that we wage is directly correlated to our self-worth as humans, our perception of our real value, and our inexperience from youth and an obsession with an outside carrying case for the beauty of our inner soul.
My war took a toll on my exterior.
Fluctuating weight quickly for the sake of a look.
Years of gaining and losing, overtraining and undertraining, both equally hard on my body.
But my war took way more of a toll on my interior.
Years of not feeling like enough.
A misguided association with my value as a human and the contribution I could make to my corner of the world based on a superficial notion that beauty and size determine the rise of my very existence.
Hiding my superpowers because of the days where I didn’t feel like my insides matched my outsides.
I was downplaying my worth based off of unrealistic images fed to me by a self-serving culture. After all, nobody profits from strong self-worth and the realization that our power comes from someplace deep within.
Our self-hate feeds so many industries from supplements, pills, wraps, plastic surgery, beauty products, and a multi-billion dollar diet industry.
The time I spent at war with myself taught me a lot about who I am and the battle scars I took from each encounter added wisdom. Sometimes I wonder if we can ever come to peace with our bodies before life has given us the benefit of such lessons, history and years of external and internal conflict. I wish I could save my daughters from their own wars, but maybe it’s not for me to protect them, perhaps I have just to show them the love and grace I can give to myself now, with the hopes that they may evolve just a little bit beyond my foolish youth and come to their power sooner.
While I was busying wagging war, my body was giving me life, enabling me to grow, evolve, and deepen. My interior and my exterior changed through seasons, brought my children to this earth and gave them their first breath. My beautiful body nourished them, picked them up physically, emotionally, and mentally when they lost their father and has helped me dust them off every time they have fallen. My body regardless of my beliefs in its ability, took me up mountains, helped me raft rivers, and built strong networks and loving friendships.
My body forgave me for every foolish diet, years of neglect, and choices I’d rather, in hindsight, not have made.
The truth is we all need to stop being at war with our bodies.
Our body is nothing more than a vehicle, and it’s a moldable bio-organism that can be, over time, shaped, strengthened, defined, and even destroyed….if we don’t take care. It all up to us and our small daily choices made on our interior before ever exercised on our exterior.
You can’t self-hate yourself into a place of wellness.
You can’t wish yourself into something different, and you shouldn’t wait to live your life fully, powerfully, and entirely until the exterior matches the undeniable power of your interior.
What you can do is work on your interior and allow that growth to transform your vehicle into the healthiest, strongest and most complete version of you.
Embrace the journey, the seasons, the rise and sometimes even the fall of your bodies temple. Realize that your beauty shines from someplace we can’t readily see or even begin to describe.
The glimmer in your eyes, the light of your smile, and the magnet pull of your inner energy may expand as you strengthen your exterior carrying case, but never underestimate that the work starts on your interior and the critical belief that you are far more valuable than what others may see, you are the embodiment of what they feel.
Read more from Michelle in her best selling book, Healthy Healing. http://www.healthyhealingbook.com