The assumption would be if you met me and saw me is that being petite (I’m almost 5’1) with a muscular, athletic frame that I’m content with my body. Truth is I’m pretty content now, but it has been a long road to get here.
I have always been aware of my body and how I perceive it to look from growing up taking dance classes in mirrored studios. I never had any eating disorder or comments from dance teachers, friends, or family about my body growing up. I have always been active, petite,and had arms like I lift weights (and I don’t!)
When I moved to Chicago after college to dance professionally is when I had one teacher specifically tell me I needed to lose my “baby fat”. And wanting to be accepted and being the perfectionist and people pleaser that I was, I knew I would do whatever I needed to do to slim down to be accepted and succeed as a dancer. It was in this moment I now realize that I let someone else disempower me and began to nit pick at my body and actively diet. I restricted myself by being super “healthy” by doing juice cleanses, calling myself a vegetarian eating only one meal a day while taking multiple dance classes and running around the city working at multiple jobs, all while being super unhealthy partying at night. Once I started to lose weight and received more compliments about my body, it was an incentive to keep it up. Skinny does NOT equal healthy, folks!!
“Skinny does NOT equal healthy, folks!!“
Many years later once I committed to my yoga practice, I began to become more aware of how hypercritical and unhappy I was trying to maintain this body that someone else told me looks best. In acknowledging that I began to heal. I began to love just moving my body again and began to learn to love myself. And now that I have had my sweet baby boy, I feel even more empowered in my body once again knowing that I created, housed, pushed out, and am raising a human. Our bodies are such resilient gifts!!! My yoga practice on the mat and off is a constant reminder to love myself and love this body that I am in with so much gratitude.