Last month I had a birthday. Not a big milestone in the chronological sense, but a huge one in a personal sense. I’ve been slowly renovating my life with small improvements, baby steps if you will. It has been a slow change, and many times challenging (like in this post), but I’m so happy to be here.
To celebrate my birthday this year, I decided to focus on my body and celebrate this “earth suit” that I so often ignore or criticize. I don’t have a model-like bod. I have bulges, scars, and freckles in ridiculous places. This body, though, has treated me well.
I have relied on it to see me through dark times, as well as the joyful, and it has taken me to far away places to explore. Without my body, I wouldn’t have the daughter I have today. Nor would I be able to run on the trails I love or type out the stories in my head. Sir wouldn’t have a fine ass to spank, and my dungeon friends would miss their willing demo bottom.
I’m changing my relationship with my body to one of love and respect, but I still have to remind myself to say, “I love and deeply accept myself in this moment, exactly as I am.”
A very talented friend of mine, who is also a professional photographer, took photos of my birthday celebration with the help of his yummy assistant. He didn’t even mind when Catsquatch climbed into his tripod bag to shed white fur all over the black interior. I could have splurged on a new dress or shoes as a birthday present, or a well-deserved manicure. Instead I got mostly naked in my bedroom on a very hot day and asked my dear friends to snap photos.
I can’t say that I loved all the results. Not because of D’s skills with a lens but because of my struggle to accept that this is how I look. I have a tummy that sticks out and cellulite on my upper thighs. Do I want y’all to see that? Nope. *I* don’t want to see it either. But while I may see them as imperfections, I also acknowledge the strength there too. I love good food, and I love cooking. The evidence is in my tummy and my thighs. I could not eat and exercise every day and rid myself of those things, but I wouldn’t enjoy my life as much. Been there, done that, was miserable.
I’m in my early forties now, and I’m finished trying to meet other’s expectations (or what I perceive as their expectations). That goes for the unattainable cultural idea of beauty that’s splashed across our media too. I no longer wish to feel bad about myself for not measuring up. I’m pretty kickass just as I am, and I think you are too.
I want to celebrate now. Here. This moment today.
I will never be in this exact place again, and I want to remember this birthday celebration. Happy birthday to me!
Happy ____ day to YOU!
Let’s celebrate all our bodies!