SomeoneLikeYou Tuesday, June 3, 2014
I woke up this morning to a bunch of notifications from various blogging friends alerting me I was on Teen Vogue's Facebook page! Such an absolute and total honor. I went to the link and saw they had posted a photo of me in a bikini from a few years ago for a swimsuit article on their site. I didn't mind at all that they used my photo (like I said, super honored!), but then the fact hit me that 4.1 million people were going to see me in a bikini.
That is terrifying. I can't even fathom that number it's so astronomical. It makes me twitch to think about all those eyes on my body, examining every curve, bump, and ripple there is. My body is not perfect; I am well aware of that. Doctor's consider me to be 'slightly overweight' and I've known that I have quite the bottom heavy stature for being 5'3. But I'm darn proud of this body. It took me a lot of years to come to being darn proud, but I can honestly say I am. I remember back when I posted these photos I felt super self conscious. It was the end of me gaining a lot of weight after quitting swim team and kind of coming into my more 'womanly' body. But I wanted to show girls that their bodies were beautiful, too, whatever shape and size they were, so I posted them. Years later I look at myself in awe over the courage I had to do that and I appreciate this body more than ever. I wish every young girl (and even woman) could feel finally this peace with her body that I do now.
I was really scared to read the comments for this picture because I mean...I'M IN A BIKINI FOR THE WORLD TO SEE. Teen Vogue has posted a photo of me in the past and people ripped me apart, calling me a pig, obese, unattractive...It was hard for me to go through that scrutiny and I was fully clothed, let alone a picture of me with my thighs and hips and stomach showing...But I was shocked to see the comments, in the best way possible. They were so uplifting, so positive and encouraging. It filled my heart with so much joy to read these things, and terror at the same time that I was going to find something scathingly negative any moment...and of course, yeah, there are dumb comments. But mostly, people were accepting and loving, and unconditional, and I can't tell you how much that means to me. Not because these people accept me and my body, but that our culture is coming to a point where people are learning it doesn't matter what size you are. You're perfect. The photo that was posted on Teen Vogue's site a few years ago people were not open, were not willing to see beauty in a different light...but it's amazing what a few years can do to our society and how we view each other.
I have hope and confidence for the future in knowing that standards of beauty are moving in the right direction of accepting everyone's body--no matter what.
Thank you all for your support and encouragement you always give me; as always, it means the world. x
With much love, Lauren.