Remember you have been criticizing yourself for years and it hasn’t worked. Try approving of yourself and see what happens. - Louise L. Hay
Two piece swimsuits were not part of my vocabulary.
Like many moms, after I had children, other things became a priority beyond my waist size. Feeding toddlers and growing children around the clock. The dust-buster that was running so many times throughout the day. Sticky fingerprints and baseball schedules and it’s not until after 9 p.m. that I got to sit down for the first time every day.
Going for a run wasn’t on the radar. Or finding time to swim, or bike, or go to an aerobics class at the Y. There were no minutes in the day to devote to them anyway. Not to mention that my meals were often leftover nuggets the kids hadn’t finished eating.
And as a result, I hated looking at myself in the mirror. I never wore a bathing suit when anyone could see me. Those long t-shirts going practically down to your knees? I wore them at the beach. And I stopped being in photos. When my first little one was a tiny thing, there’s a photo of me in a very cute bathing suit putting her feet in the water at the beach. And that’s probably the last photo of me where you see skin other than my shins.
It's a bit of a regret, now. I hated looking at my body, so I made sure neither myself nor anyone else could see it.
But you know what I missed out on? Laughing with my kid at the beach in front of the camera. Freckles on my shoulders. Feeling comfortable instead of guilty.
What I’ve realized as I’ve gotten older, and there are fewer sticky fingers and messy kisses and neck hugs, is that it didn’t matter what I looked like. It mattered that I was with my kids, being everything I needed for them. And THAT is what should have given me confidence. I was a powerhouse (thinking about it now makes me tired…). I did yardwork, ran an endless carpool, remembered every single school paper that needed to be signed, and was a pro at blow drying my hair in 4 minutes or less. I certainly didn’t have it all together, but I covered all the bases and was the mom I needed to be, and that’s exactly perfect. The size of my jeans wasn’t what counts.
So as you go through this hot month with a beach or pool day or two, a family outing, maybe a bonfire with smores, remember this: You are enough. You are there for your kids, or your pets, or your friends and nieces and nephews. You keep all the balls in the air and sometimes it wears you out, but you are enough. Be comfortable in your own skin. Smile for pictures. Forget about what you look like and enjoy what you are.
To keep all your balls in the air, don’t forget to get your annual checkup. You can be sure nothing is brewing that shouldn’t be, and talk with a doctor about any annoying problems that have developed. Schedule a visit today with the button below. We look forward to hearing from you!
Dr. Julie Drolet
P.S. Add a boost to your confidence by making sure nothing’s wrong at your annual checkup!