"For years, I dreaded the arrival of spring magazines, knowing they’d be filled with pages of flirty, colorful and teeny bikinis fitted to fat-free model bodies. I was a girl with cellulite, Beyonce thighs (when she’s eating her favorite southern dishes, that is) and a tum that more than coquettishly peeped over the waistband of any bikini bottom. Well into my 20s, my beach uniform was always a one-piece, usually topped by an oversized T-shirt or tank top and shorts. I hated that moment when everyone sat down and disrobed, casually eyeing how the others looked nearly-naked, our brains registering a comparison to the culture’s ideal. The pressure of exposing my body in public was enough to convince even a sun- and sand-lover like me to stay on the cement.
I had an epiphany at 27, when I decided to say “f— it” and wear a size-16 bikini. Proudly. Publicly. I called myself a “body outlaw” and held my head high. Hey world, here’s a body you don’t usually see in a swimsuit. Get used to it.
Oddly, the biggest revelation was that NOBODY CARED. How liberating: I’d wasted so many years imprisoned by shame and fear of being ridiculed, when I could have been out frolicing in my dimple-thighed, two-piece glory.
Granted, the bikini had boy shorts and a generously-cut top. And I was at a southern Pennsylvania water park, not on a St.-Tropez yacht rocking a thong with the “glitterati” (who made up that word, anyway?). But for the ten years since then, I’ve publicly worn bikinis while ranging from size 10 to 16, and have encouraged people to challenge the idea that only certain body types have the right to bare arms…and legs, and thighs, and stomachs.
What kind of body is a “bikini body”? The enlightened answer: any kind that wants to be.”
Day after day, by your words, your actions, and your thoughts, you have chosen your own path. And that path has brought you to precisely where you are.
Now it is time to choose again. Remember that with each and every choice you make, you determine the details of how your life will proceed.
It is a serious responsibility as well as a wonderful, enormous opportunity. For again and again, you can choose your way toward the life you truly wish to live❞
Definition of a (funk): To be sad, moody, stressed, unhappy, negative for A) No reason B) For multiple reasons C) For reasons you don’t know or understand.
I’ve been in a funk the past few days. It’s just this gloomy, no energy, low spirited funk. The kind of funk that makes you want to eat your feelings, lie in bed with Netflix, and avoid people. I haven’t felt like this in a while. I haven’t cried like this in a while. And it’s unsettling because I used to have days like this all the time when I was really depressed.
I don’t like feeling this way, but I know all of this is from stress. So I tell myself that these negative feelings are waves. I imagine these feelings as waves because I like to think they wash over me. I choose not to internalize these feelings or thoughts because they’re not who I am. Feelings aren’t always logical, and the ones I have now don’t reflect the kind of person I am or my future or what my body actually looks like. I think that’s important to remember. We don’t always have to analyze our feelings or ruminate about our sadness. Sometimes, life happens, we feel stressed, and we take a couple of mental health days to recover. Mental health days are like self care days. Isolating yourself, eating your feelings, and letting negativity consume you isn’t self care. BUT taking time for yourself, treating yourself to a nice meal, letting yourself experience negative emotions is healthy. You can feel negative emotions and accept them as part of your experience, but choose not to internalize them.
So what have I done? I spent time alone, journaled, watched my TV shows, ate a lot of ice cream, took lots of naps, and “wasted” time on tumblr. I also went grocery shopping with a friend, called my sister and talked about positive things, had dinner with a friend even though all I wanted to do was stay in bed, wrote letters to my best friends, cried on the phone with my mother, and left the house to go to class. As much as I want to be alone when I feel bad, I also know how valuable it is to be with others and receive love and support.
If you’re in a funk, don’t fight it or internalize it. Observe your thoughts and feelings as if they’re “visitors” that have come into your life, perhaps unexpectedly. They will leave. They may overstay their welcome, but they will leave, and you will be okay. Take as many self care days as you need. Remember to reach out and spend time with people who can make you laugh and support you when you cry. It’s tempting to stay home alone and keep to yourself (I know this feeling all too well), but sometimes the best way to get through a funk is spending time with others and doing things you love.
What are some things you do to get through a funk?
What will you gain when you lose?
Well, Special K, I gained self-confidence
when I lost the first 10 pounds.
I gained an addiction when I lost
the next thirty.
I gained the horrid feeling deep in my
empty stomach when I started to lose my hair.
When I finally reached recovery,
I gained the confidence to lose my eating disorder.
I no longer judge my worth in proportion to my weight.
*Positive affirmations are powerful. If negative comments can bring you down, positive comments can just as well bring you up! Practice positive self talk. Be your own best friend. Treat yourself kindly.*