An Open Letter to My Body

Hi body,

I don’t really know where to begin. I guess we’ve always had sort of a complicated relationship, even when we were little.

I remember when I was seven and I realized you didn’t look like my friends’ bodies, and I started to hate you for the first time.

I remember standing in the girls locker room in middle school and hiding in the corner as girls moved freely around me, wondering why you looked so different.

I remember being a tween, standing in the mirror, squeezing and pinching and pulling you, begging you to look different.

I remember one day just deciding to stop looking in the mirror.

I cover you up with big sweaters and loose clothes because I’m ashamed of you. Sometimes I hate you so much I avoid going places or doing things that will show you off.

I’m sorry. You didn’t deserve to be treated like that then, and you don’t deserve to be treated like that now. Sometimes I forget what you do for me.

I don’t hate you when I hug my friends and my soft body is a comfort to them.

I don’t hate you when my dog sits on my lap and makes a home out of my large thighs.

I don’t hate you when you carry me to my loved ones and hold their hands.

I don’t hate you when you help me dance around the room with my friends and laugh.

I guess what I really should be saying is thank you. Have I ever said that to you?

Have I ever thanked you?

Thank you. I’m sorry I don’t love you enough. Every inch of you deserves to be loved because you help me be the person I am.

Every scar and freckle and stretch mark that you have tells a story of what we’ve been through. We are a walking novel. We tell the story of who I am, where I’ve been, and all the things I’ve done in my life. That’s kind of amazing, don’t you think?

I’m sorry for treating you badly and saying I’ll love you when you look a certain way.

I want you to look different, but no amount of hoping or wishing or dieting or exercise is going to make me love you.

Nothing is going to make me love you until I just appreciate you for what you are, in this moment and every moment.

We’re going to be spending a lot of time together, body, so I guess it’s time we try and have a better relationship.

Maybe I’m not ready to wear crop tops or go to the beach yet.

But I looked in the mirror today. And you looked...dare I say it? Good.