I've been up to my neck in assignments for the past week, which is why this update is a little later than usual. I ordered this t-shirt a month ago and it's been a long time since I've felt this fierce wearing something. So here's a little bit about why this message is important to me.
For as long as I can remember, people have had something to say about my body. I'm continuously being asked where I'm from, as if to tell me that I don't look like everyone else. I’ve been questioned, complimented, teased and even sexually harassed on the size of my lips. In my younger years they were referred to as juju, when I was what society deemed old ‘enough’, I was told they were blow job lips. I’ve been shouted at and I’ve been spat on. I’ve been told I was too fat and I’ve been asked if I was pregnant. Then I lost weight, and suddenly I was too skinny, I was told I looked gaunt and sick. When I show my ID card, strangers take it upon themselves to tell me which hair colour I suit better. How many of you can relate to any or all of these? My guess is way too fucking many.
When I was 18 years old I got braces, I wore them for 10 months and when I got them off I was disappointed. Why wasn’t my smile like the ones in the magazines? The same thing happened when I lost 20kgs, I expected to have new legs, legs that were long and slim, legs that weren’t mine. Over the years I’ve gradually come to realise that only you can be you, and that’s pretty spectacular, if you ask me. Often, I forget that the body isn’t here to be looked at, it’s an incredible machine, it has a job, and for most people it does it pretty well. If you were able to walk anywhere today - give thanks, be grateful. Don’t worry about that dimple or that crooked tooth or that stomach roll. It doesn’t mean shit at the end of the day. I’m always in awe of my body’s ability to put up with everything I put it through each week.
Obviously, I’m not saying don’t have goals, but you should be making goals that improve your skills and increase your opportunities. For me, currently, I want to alter my body composition so it will be easier to achieve my running goals. What I’m repeating to myself, and you should be too, is that there isn’t one right way to look. My body looks different to how it looked a year ago, but I can still run, jump, plank and squat just as well. Even more importantly, regardless of what I look like or weigh, I still have the privileged ability to read, write and speak. So why does it matter? It doesn’t. Your body, my body, any woman’s body, is not there for public judgement. I’m certainly no expert in this, and I’m definitely not 100% there with the self-love, but I’m working on it. My thighs touch, my lips are big and my hair has a mind of its own. I will take my top off in yoga and you will see the folds of my skin, I don't care anymore. Fuck dominant beauty standards.
- To read more about how strength comes in all shapes and sizes, check out Kelly Roberts at runselfierepeat.com
- To buy this sick t-shirt (good luck picking one because they are all incredible) visit greenboxshop.us