Yesterday, I put on my favorite pair of shorts – light denim, high-waisted short-shorts with a visible button fly by A.P.C. They’d been too small for me, and for the first time in three years… they fit. I felt so good about myself! Then… I kinda felt bad.
If I’m a body-posi person, why would I care about losing a bit of weight? I’m happy at any size, aren’t I?
I am happy at any size. It just took me awhile to get there.
I grew up a skinny girl. I hit puberty young and had boobs before most girls my age, but they didn’t grow much afterward. I had a “second puberty” in my early 20s; my breasts, thighs and butt grew exponentially and I’ve got the stretch marks (not “tiger stripes,” ugh!) to prove it. My metabolism also slowed down in my 20s. And, when you’re young and you’re hungover – or you have the munchies – your diet won’t be the best!
As my body grew bigger, I grew ashamed of it. I’d got through phases where I tried restricting my calories. I got a gym membership, which, LOL, if anybody knows me. Sometimes I cried. I thought I was fat, but I wasn’t. I was chubby at most. My everyday feelings of shame, low self-esteem, depression and anxiety were heightened.
Something changed along the way, though. I think it has to do with the culture and the body-posi movement being more vocal. Seeing friends and celebrities embrace their curves and cellulite had a positive impact on me and I felt good about myself for the first time in awhile.
I was hesitant to join Instagram for so long because I felt like it’d just make me feel bad about myself. But it didn’t have to! Body-posi IGers like @bodyposipanda and Toronto's @kenziebrenna are on my feed, as well as body-posi song kween, Lizzo. Their candid pics showing their cellulite and rolls empower me. Me and my friend Bev even wore custom crop tops when we saw Lizzo live last month!
And as problematic as she is, seeing Lena Dunham naked and unafraid on Girls was important. Body-shamers would say “Why does she need to be naked, it’s gross.” When Dunham would speak up about not having a “conventionally Hollywood” figure, supposedly body-posi people would say, “OMG shut up, you’re not fat have a real fat person on your show.” The same is said of Amy Schumer, another not skinny, but not plus-size woman in showbiz with problematic tendencies. Part of having these body types is sometimes feeling fatter than you actually are, and that’s something a lot of us can relate to.
Being a person who doesn’t enjoy working out and who enjoys eating whatever I want, I accept the fact that I’ll never be skinny again. I don’t want to be. To quote the great Mindy Lahiri, “I fluctuate between chunky and curvy!” I’m also flabby and out of shape. It’s fine!
I wasn’t always the body-posi person I am today. In my more problematic past, I’d participated in fat-shaming. I know that I’ve hurt people that I love with my past fatphobia and I feel extremely terrible and ashamed about it. I’m a product of growing up around toxic views of body size, and it took far too many years to rid myself of the same views. I’m so glad I have. Not just for my own self-esteem, but for all of the people I love.
I was good with my size when my shorts were too small. I'm good with my size now. I'm not better or worse if I weigh a little more or a little less. I choose to feel good about my body, no matter what.
But, man, I love these shorts! Catch this former Skinny Legend walking around town in my short-shorts, with my pale, cellulite-dimpled thighs touching, confident AF, happy at this size, and every size before. And happy that I didn’t have to spend any extra money buying new shorts!