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Personal story about selflove, body positivity and beauty

A topic we read about a lot which I think is really important, though I haven’t written about it before. The theme selflove is something really important and I feel we sometimes forget to adres this topic. Let’s start by telling you how I came to this topic.

mayra x stedelijk

Last Friday I was part of something really beautiful, I was invited to the opening of the audiotour of Mayra x Stedelijk, a museum in Amsterdam. Each month they invite an inspiration person to set up an audio tour where they chose items from the collection to tell about. Why it inspires them, or not, what they feel when seeing it or what their first impression was. If you’re in Amsterdam you can go, it’s for free when you use her name at the front door. It’s from 13 May up to 9 June.

“After years of falling in and out of love with my body, I finally came to the understanding that happy is not a dress size.”

She doesn’t need an introduction, Mayra has been around for so many years as plus size model. As free lance writer and blogger you can read her stories in magazines, online but also on her blog The Publisized. Some women can be a real inspiration to me, especially some plus size bloggers and Mayra is one of them. In a society where everything (seems) to be perfect it’s nice to read that everyone has struggles, how idiotic that sounds. I love to see how she has grown the past years and enjoys being the woman she is. The way she shares her story is very beautiful and open, something I can learn from.

arrogant?

While I did the audio tour and was watching all those beautiful pieces of art and listening to Mayra’s story, talked to people around me it just hit me. The exact reason why I never really talk about this topic. why I don’t adres it. My road to selflove wasn’t that long, or hard. Does that surprise you, it did surprise me. Am I that arrogant by nature, well I had to sit down and think about this one too. The stories of Mayra are so pure, so real but I don’t share the same struggles, isn’t this strange?

selflove

Ever since I was little I am overweight, so you could say I don’t know any better. Perhaps it’s the reason why from a young age I’ve accepted? Of course there were (are) days where I’m not that happy but on a young age I decided: this is me. It was not my fault, there wasn’t anything I could do? If there was a miracle pil, a genie in a bottle or I was granted one wish I’m sure I wished I was normal. What is normal, I wonder? Isn’t it about being healthy, being able to do whatever I want? Yes, and this is what I did. That was enough for me, the wish was still there but it didn’t control my life.

“it’s never good enough”

enjoying life

I learned pretty young that dieting wasn’t anything for me. Mostly because all the women and young adults around me were doing all sorts of diets, eating vegetables and soups all day and a few month later they were back to their original weight, or more. Some women managed to keep it off, but they were never satisfied with what they had reached, it was never good enough. Of course I had my share of trials and errors, especially during high school but nothing really worked. I decided to accept the way I am, I will enjoy life and when there’s a solution I’ll gladly accept it. Till then, let’s make the most of it.

no solution

Obviously there was no solution* but did stop me? Perhaps, sometimes, but it doesn’t feel like that for me. I can remember some example, like when I was young every girl wanted to become a flight attendant. Not me, despite I was only like 9 and I always dreamt about traveling the world, I knew you had to be skinny and the rules were strict. Don’t ask me how I knew this, but I did. So what I did wanted to be? A surgeon or private detective, go figure! Another thing I was aware of on a young age is not to wear horizontal stripes, because Oprah told me that on her show. She also told me that you can only be truly happy when you fit in a pair of regular jeans and a basic white tee tucking it in. Never truly understood her, thought it was a crazy American thing or something.

destiny?

It took some time for me to write this blog, I really had to sit down and think about it. Go back in time, back to my memories and looking to the past me. It comes down to this, my road to selflove had no turns. There were no lefts, no rights to turn, only straight on. Just like who I am, goal set, positive minded and always on my way to something better. I am who I am without any guilt or regrets. I am like I am because that’s the way I am without blaming myself, or anyone else. I won’t call it destiny but I’ve always though as a young Josie: I am like this because this is who I am and the person who can bare this.

body positivity

Now that I’m typing my pride is growing, I can actually say that I’m proud of myself. I’ve never really analysed myself this way or looked back at my life being plus size. In a way you could say I’m a natural body positive person. Of course there are things I don’t like about myself, but there are also some parts (most parts) I really love, why not? I’m very fain and I love to dress up and do my make up. Perhaps in the past I felt like I had to try harder to compensate with my size, sure. Each teenager has such insecurities and I think this is normal, just like me.

easy talking

Perhaps I had it easy, I’ve never been bullied because of my size. Even if you did, you had it coming because kids are cruel and will always find something to pick on. Of course my weight had been the target for vertel fights but this was something I already knew and thought of it as an easy target. It didn’t stop me from getting back. I just realised that I’m so happy to have never been truly unhappy with myself.

body shaming

In the past years as blogger I did experience a lot of negativity around being my size and weight. Nasty remarks, but also comments where people thought they were being nice but in fact were just being an ass in my face. So when you tell me “better than a sack of bones” or you talk about “skinny bitches” or “straight as cardboard” you’re doing the exact same thing, but opposite. It’s body shaming and that’s never okay, no matter what size or weight or visible features. Body shamingBody shaming is now a well spoken topic but it wasn’t a couple of years ago, it really startled me. People can say whatever they want apparently because I put it online so I should be able to accept comments like this. Uh, no! Whatever people say, 1 lousy comment always ways heavier than all those positive vibes.

selflove

ieniemienie Josine

rollercoaster

My current situation -sort of burn out- makes it that I analyse a lot. Sitting still is something I’m not good at but I also don’t work at the moment. The life of a blogger isn’t always perfect, even thouhg it looks like that sometimes. There are hard days when I struggle with my issues, realising I’m working so hard and nothing comes out of my hands. I even consider quiting blogging because all is so fake and then I realise that doesn’t solve anything. Like the words of Mahatma Gandhi: be the change you wish to see in the world. I promote selflove, body positivity and of course seeing beauty in all things. My goal is always to motivate and inspire other women to do the same. When you don’t love yourself, how can you expect others to do so? Well now you know what’s going on in my head, to be me it’s an eye opener. Good blogs exist from truth, passion and honesty.

how went your road to selflove?

* note: a couple of years ago I changed my lifestyle which works for me. Eating healthy, enjoying life. Somethings this goes well, sometimes it doesn’t which affects my weight but that doesn’t bother me.

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