If only our eyes saw souls, instead of bodies, how very different our ideals of beauty would be. -Unknown
Sharing our weight is a cultural taboo, right? The only time discussion of weight is acceptable is revealing how much you gained during pregnancy, or how much you lost on a diet. We are willing to share our height and shoe size at liberty, because we realize those numbers are unchanging; genetic. However, our weight, we believe, is of our own choosing, and because of this perception, we fear what others may think of us if we were to actually share the number on our bathroom scale.
When I first published this post, I actually shared my “scale number” in an effort to defy cultural norms and alleviate the power this number seems to hold over us; to say, “Screw it. Who cares?” I put a disclaimer at the top of the post so those struggling with eating disorders wouldn’t be affected by seeing an actual number, and, in turn, use it for comparison. But then I realized that by sharing that number, I am excluding people from being able to read this; the very people I am passionate about helping. That number? It says not one thing about me, except that the weight of all my skin, and organs, and bones, and muscles, and fat, weigh “x-many” pounds. Other than that, you cannot deduce one thing about me, as a person. It says nothing about my character. It says nothing about my heart or my passions or my dreams. Heck, it doesn’t even tell you what types of food I eat or how much I exercise. That number tells you as much about me as my height and shoe size. Nothing.
Women tend to judge themselves (and others, if we’re honest) on outward appearance. We look in the mirror and analyze ourselves. We cover our “flaws” with makeup. We apply goop to our thighs in hopes that our cellulite will disappear. We look at our scars and stretch marks and wrinkles and love handles, and judge them as “bad”; as something we need to cover up, or get rid of. But why? Why not look at those stretch marks as evidence of joy; a child’s birth? Why not look at those wrinkles and see how laughter shaped our eyes? We tend to see our “imperfections” as a reason to be ashamed, instead of seeing them as a life well-lived.
Today, I challenge you to see yourself for you. Our bodies are simply vessels to carry around our beloved souls. I actually looked up the definition of “soul”, and here’s what I found:
Soul: “The immaterial essence of an individual life”.
Gives me goosebumps.
Look inside yourself and spend some time in quiet, reflecting on your soul. Who you are when stripped of the outward appearance? What experiences have shaped you? What brings you joy? What breaks your heart? What are your dreams and goals? Fears? Passions? Concentrate on those things, because unlike the number on the scale, these things actually make you who you are.