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Be OK


I would like to just be "OK" with myself. The deeper I dig and really think about it, I realize I haven't been "OK" with myself for awhile. I can't pinpoint anything that led to me feeling the way I do about myself. There are times I wish I could. If I could point to a situation and name it as the reason behind my poor self-image that might be better. I just know it's rooted in fear.

To the best of my recollection, it set in early in college. I wasn't playing competitive sports anymore, and I just wanted to be in shape. Maybe I just wanted to be skinny. I didn't have a big social life and I was very academic-focused, so I mostly worked out and studied. I wasn't ever happy with how I looked, but I also didn't care. I wasn't playing the comparison game so much.

Graduate school was more of the same, but I had more friends and found a good balance. I was in a good flow with my runs and other workouts, I was healthy and not focused on food, and I don't recall dwelling on my looks too much.

At some point, it just became hard to even be OK with myself, though. I remembering miscarrying early on when David and I were trying to get pregnant. I was already doing all of the things I was supposed to do to have a healthy pregnancy. I'd been taking a prenatal vitamin, I ate well, I was in good shape. Yet, I still miscarried. It's still such a vivid memory. I can replay that day over and over. To have no control over your body in that moment is a terrible feeling. I just cried and lay on our bed. Afterward, I apologized to David so many times, and I even apologized to my parents. I felt like I did something wrong. I felt like if I'd been better to my body or had a better body, it wouldn't have happened.

I couldn't fully enjoy my next pregnancy. The uncertainty overtook me at times. I was so happy to be pregnant, and I also struggled with the changes my body was going through. Rather than embracing those changes as necessary to grow and accommodate my baby, I was critical of them. One of my doctors made a point to criticize my weight gain (even though it was normal). That day sucked! I remember him asking what I ate and drank and what I did for exercise. Then, he told me that the more weight I gained, the harder it would be to lose. The sit down with the man who went over my body scan had a similar vibe. I felt judged and reduced to a number.

I'm working on allowing my feelings to reside within me and recognizing them. Figuring out why they're present isn't easy for me, but I find it necessary. I don't always find a "why" and often I figure out "why" and don't know what to do with it. How do I acknowledge the feelings of fear, insecurity, worthlessness,anxiety and also overcome them? Or, not even overcome them but just allow them to be there and not let them overwhelm me? How do I allow my feelings toward my body to be there and not let them dictate how I treat myself? Right now, I let them dictate what I wear, how I workout, what I eat, etc. I let the fear decide I can't trust a compliment or believe I'm enough. I let it tell me that despite the amazing things my body has done it's still not good enough.

I want to do things for my body because they feel good; not because I think what I'm already doing isn't enough. I'm in a place where I don't know if the workouts I do or the goals I have are what I want or if I just think I'm not enough. It's part of that comparison mentality. Why do I need to base my self-worth on what someone else is doing or how someone else looks?

The truth is I'm not happy with me. It's a cycle of not allowing myself self-compassion and being frustrated that I don't. That leaves me not happy with myself for not being happy with myself! So, we're going to start with being "OK" with me.