I’m FINALLY learning to embrace my saggy bottom britches, body parts descending, stretch marks showing, varicose vein-wearing, laugh-lines growing, middle-aged body of mine.
I recently listened to a Lysa TerKeurst podcast. She discusses her book- It’s Not Supposed to Be This Way. She refers to buying a bikini that her DNA confirms she is not meant to wear. She gets home, puts it on and considers all the negative comments people have said to fill the space between she and the mirror behind her (at this point she hasn’t even turned around to look at her reflection). Once she’s spoken out each and every negative word, she makes the commitment to turn around, stare at what’s glaring before her and have gratitude for what she sees (despite its many flaws).
Lysa ends her new revolutionary approach to bikini-wearing freedom, wanting to run wildly through her front yard (she doesn’t, but for the first time ever she feels like she could).
That guts me!
Even though I can’t quite commit to that type of self-brutality, I do believe it’s a revolutionary approach to how we see ourselves.
After hearing that message, it dawned on me: it’s not you, it’s me. I’ve heard that said many times in relationships, usually when someone doesn’t have the guts to say why they are leaving.
Which leads me to why I’ve decided to leave you insecurity, my archenemy…
It’s not you, it’s me.
We have a love-hate relationship, you and I, but I finally figured out why I want to break up with you.
Insecurity, you don’t fit me. You are a pair of skinny jeans, and I am old, faded pajamas. You are chic, and I am tired. You’re young and trendy, I am mature but saggy. You wear cropped shorts, and I wear blue veins just below the knee (that I can’t even hide with a pair of manly cargo shorts).
Quite honestly, you’re holding me back.
I’m not coming into the golden years — they are more of a dirty, dishwater brown — but all the same, these years are golden.
Each year, I grow into my uncomfortable self a little bit more.
Each year, I think I just might wear those shorts, blue legs and all.
What is it about us women that makes us laser focused on our faults instead of the loveliness we carry? We try desperately to hide them, when bringing them to light is the very thing that makes us authentically us. Our vulnerability — our unique rawness — is precisely what is appealing about us. Oh sure, there will always be skinny Barbie at drop-off, but who’s to say she is more attractive than the wisdom of aging? And as Theodore Roosevelt reminds us, “Comparison is the thief of joy.”
Stop comparing. It is a sickness to our souls.
What exactly are we trying to hide that we are so deeply afraid to show? Imperfection.
Instead, let’s just come out of hiding.
Let’s get down from that dirty, dusty vintage shelf and flaunt these not-that-gorgeous but strong capable legs.
Ladies, we’ve absolutely nothing to prove and nothing to hide. This is about accepting ourselves as we are and resting in the skin we’re in.
Today I ran. But first I inhaled lemon blueberry quinoa pancakes (thank you First Watch-my absolute favorite breakfast spot). I also indulged in chocolate cake for lunch (to celebrate my husbands passing of his PT test). THEN I ran, red-faced with unshaven legs, my blue tinted-pale beauties waving proudly for all the world to see. Had the anthem played, it would have been perfection, flaunting my red, white and blues.
But y’all somewhere along the way, way back when, I bought into this lie that I needed to look a certain way and when certain parts didn’t measure up, well…I’ve just been hiding parts of myself ever since. Gals, even when I was the skinny girl, I thought I was the fat girl.
I never really enjoyed the skin I was in, and I most certainly never flaunted it. I was far too hypercritical for that.
Well, new fat is the new skinny … or something like that. I am just tired of the need to perfect the things that are nearly impossible to perfect. I crave depth so much more than those skinny jeans, and I don’t care what kind of fat bottom jeans I have to put on to get there. I intend to wear my saggy bottom britches (aka mom jeans) with a new-found confidence.
So, in hindsight, insecurity, maybe it’s not me, it’s you.
Maybe I don’t fit you.
I love this! SO well written, and I love the idea of breaking up with insecurity. Thank you for writing this. We are about to move again, and it’s always the okay, be yourself. Don’t hold back, just show up. So this is perfect timing. Thank you lovely!
Thank you Aj. I appreciate your sweet response. Honestly, I had to wreck my brain on this one. I don’t think I realized insecurity was still a struggle. Insecurity? Still? Ugh… such a work in progress, but girl you’re right- show up and just be you! Good luck with your coming move!
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