Tuesday, August 25, 2015

Love Your Body Tuesday: Stomach aka Ripping Off the Band-Aid

Alright, y'all, welcome to another Love Your Body Tuesday, a series in which I aim to love and appreciate every part of me.

In considering which part to highlight today, I decided to just go ahead and rip off the band-aid and get this one out of the way--my midsection aka the dreaded stomach.

I might be a little crazy.

It might not surprise you to learn I actually don't have many (any?) pictures of my bare stomach. There's a good reason for that.

I've always been fat. At least that's what I thought about myself, or what the world told me I should think.

I remember wearing a bikini when I was 8, my little baby pot belly sticking out, and feeling self-conscious even then.

The only time I can recall wearing a bikini and truly feeling comfortable was the summer of 2004, the summer of Phentermine (speed diet pills). I never got any pictures of myself wearing that bikini, but I do have a picture from that summer where the bottom of my shirt doesn't quite meet the top of my skirt and a little strip of skin is showing, across my lower abdomen. I always loved that picture because I felt like I looked so skinny--but now I hold on to the photo to remind myself of just how far I've come. I may have looked "skinny", but I was so terribly unhappy and masked it all with booze and boys.

And then I gained 30 pounds the day I stopped taking Phentermine, so it's all moot anyway. 

Right, back to actually loving my stomach.

Once upon a time, I carried my weight quite nicely--very evenly distributed, and people generally thought I was much smaller than I actually was. Then my mom died.

2008 was the year that my stomach became more than minor annoyance; it became the recipient of all of my anger and self-loathing. That year, the year that my mom died, I ate. Between eating and crying, I'm not sure I did much else. My stomach retaliated by growing more round, more bulbous, with angry red stretch marks forming all around it (just as if I were pregnant). That was the year that my clothes stopped fitting properly, and if they fit my stomach then they were surely too big for my hips--and vice versa. The stretch marks on my stomach serve as a reminder of everything I went through that year, of places I've been and places I never want to see again. Like the picture I mentioned above, they're a visual reminder of just how far I've come. 

The downside? My stomach never recovered. The upside is that when I actually was pregnant, I didn't gain any new stretch marks.

Now let's stop and think about that, just for a minute. I was pregnant, twice. I made two babies, and carried them each in my "stomach" for 9+ months. How cool is that?! Pregnancy was the one time (well, 2 times actually) in my life that I actually didn't care that my stomach was disproportionately larger than the rest of my body.

So, what else has my stomach done for me? Well, it makes a spectacular drink holder if I lean back at just the right angle...

This was taken Monday night while writing this post.
It provides a soft pillow for children, husband, and cat.

It helps me enjoy lots of yummy food by digesting (mostly) everything I eat. It also informs me of when I'm eating something not-so-good, and lets me know almost immediately that it does not approve.

Most importantly, it helps me totally rock this bikini!

How do you feel about your stomach area? What are some things that yours can do?


  1. My stomach comes in handy for typing on the keyboard, LOL!

  2. Whew, showing off your stomach GO YOU!
    My stomach carried twins to term. now it provides some cushions when said twins jump on me.

  3. You look great in your bikini!

    My stomach comes in handy as a laptop holder when I'm on the couch. lol

  4. Mine serves as a reminder of how far I've come (and occasionally as a walrus puppet, with its frowny-face looking droops).

  5. My stomach is the part of my body that I find the hardest to love. Let me qualify that - the "outside" of my stomach - the appearance and look of it is what I find hardest to love. The "inside" of it I show plenty of love to by feeding it all kind of delicious things. It's a pity the two don't go hand in hand. :-)

  6. I have a hard time loving my stomach too, so this is just what I needed to read to try to appreciate it. I guess I could say I don't mind my stretch marks because they will always remind me of my e children. ☺


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