On the topic of body shaming stuff..I shame myself more than anyone..It sucks because I feel and tell myself that I'm fat but everyone else says I'm not..My thighs are touching and I feel it makes me fat..Does it? I'm 5'6 and 120lbs..I feel massive :(
So there’s this thing called biodiversity. Everyone is shaped differently. So you can be the same height/weight as someone else and have wildly different shapes. Clothing fits differently, you stand differently, you carry yourselves differently. The list goes on. It’s not so disparate when you’re very young, but as you grow up it becomes more apparent.
The thing is, most of us have a picture in our minds of the Stock Photo Average Person. Most of these people are pretty forgettable. They look like something bland in the background of a movie- they’re part of the scenery, not really considered a “person.”
But then consider characters like Severus or Hermione or Harry or Ron. All of them have very striking characteristics about them. Hermione doesn’t just have brown hair- it’s bushy and has a mind of its own. Severus has dour looks- he’s tall and swoops like a bat. When we read these descriptions, the imagination comes to life. People with distinctive characteristics stand out and they make themselves stand apart from the rest.
Though having characteristics that are not “standard” may be a place of personal anxiety, it’s also what makes you…you!
Also, I hate to break it to you, but your body is going to change over the course of your life. Even if you die tomorrow, your body is going to change (it’s going to rot slowly into a skeleton or be cremated into ash). Change is constant and it is ruthless to the human body. As you age, your body grows things on it that it never had before. Due to my own weird endocrine problems, that means that I get skin tags (ew) and become increasingly infertile as I grow older. I also battle against a number of other health issues, as do millions of others.
But I am me. Everyone knows me on sight. I’m the one wearing the striking black dresses or the long, flowing, waist-cinched cloaks or elegant homemade hair clips. So many people know my name- they know to come to me for help or for advice. I am lumpy and imperfect, and yet, I am loved and I love myself.
Perhaps it is a sense of self-care and love that comes with time and experience, but I have found that when you’re obsessing over yourself and your flaws, you often lose sight of what is truly important. People care about you, not your thighs touching. As someone with large scars in a noticeable place, most people don’t even see them unless I point them out (turns out people tend to be really fucking unobservant).
There are big, important things to focus on that are probably infinitely more terrifying- what do you want to do with your life? What if you have to do MANY things with your life? Will you be loved? Will you have shelter? Will you be safe?
Your body is your body. Sort out your life, and put yourself out into the world- volunteer for things, join clubs, meet up with people and get some experiences under your belt….and barring any serious infirmity, your body will sort itself out.
The other day at work I was doing theatre checks (basically, I just walk from theatre to theatre making sure no one’s on their phone and there are no technical issues), and I walked into La La Land during the scene where Ryan Gosling is playing the piano in a restaurant but no one is paying attention. And I looked around and there was NO ONE IN THE THEATRE. Not a single soul had shown up to hear Ryan Gosling play.