Body positive – My sister asked me to be her bridesmaid and I said no

Laura from Harrassed Mom   asked me to be part of her body positive campaign and initially I was reluctant because, if I’m honest with myself,  I am not all that body positive . But it did remind me of how I let my lack of self confidence rob me of a special moment.

I recently, as in last month, turned down the opportunity to be my sisters bridesmaid. There is no weirdness between us we annoy and love each others as siblings do. She’s my little sister, I’ve known her since I was just about to turn nine  and my mom insisted on bringing a third child into the home.

Because of the age gap we haven’t hung out much through the years, not until super recently, in fact these days she’s one of my closest friends so why would I say no to one of my closest friends when she asked me to stand by her side during one of the biggest days of her life?

I was there for the first days of school, her first communion at church, I was there through first boyfriend stories and even held her hand as she became a mom. But when it came to the big show I turned emoji green, laughed it off and said no, and then I went home.

I said no because, surely she was kidding, I said no because  I didn’t what to spoil her pictures that’s why.

Because her and the other two bridesmaids matriculated when I was already old and married and they can buy clothes off the rack and their hair looks flawless all the flippen time, and they know how to contour and highlight, and me? I just want to hide away from cameras.

I didn’t want people looking at her photos and wondering why I was there, was I just super needy and forced my close to expired behind into the pics?

I got home and she messaged me again, telling me she was serious and wanted ME there. No one else, so I reluctantly said yes and then had a panic attack.

I couldn’t tell my husband that I felt to ugly to be in my sisters wedding, firstly , that’s not sexy and secondly, he seems to have got it into his head that I’m beautiful no matter what so he wouldn’t get it.

He wouldn’t get that sometimes I pretend that I’m not feeling well so I can get out of going to parties because I feel like nothing fits me and people are ALL looking at me. They all remember be as the skinny little thing they met and now, here – looking like I ate that skinny little thing –  I feel exposed and quite frankly I feel ugly.

I feel ugly as I walk around in the mall and notice someone who knew me from school/university/my twenties…the time before I was “cute for a chubby girl”

It’s weird because I don’t find  bigger people unattractive, I never have. The most beautiful people I have known in my life have been on the jollier side of plump, I can appreciate beauty in curves and dimples, but on me….

Actually even when I was skinny, a size 6 , I hated my boney body with it’s tendency to wear clothes like a cheap hanger. It occurred to me that I have never ever been body positive.

I thought all this because my sister asked me to be a bridesmaid and I said no

It occurred to me that I was the problem. If you can’t be happy at any s size between six to  sixteen then size is not the issue here. I need to learn to love the skin that I’m in…

This body that literally fought it’s way back from deaths door , the body who carried a second child despite doctors fears, this body that gets up and goes despite, depression and anxiety and the aches and pains that accompany it.

I need to stop seeing myself as less than. I need to be able to take a compliment without rolling my eyes like a slot machine.

That’s my vision for this year. I want to lose weight, but not the weight that will get me back into a bikini. I want to lose  the mental weight that follows me around telling me dumb things I really should be paying no attention to.

This year I want to be as proud of my outside as I am of my inside (I’m actually quite a nice person, hey, I am).

So here goes to a year of taking that photo and doing that activity even if it means you will end up as the background in someone else’s selfie.

Life is too short to live yours feeling less than, so here’s to more of me and more body positivity …

Because body positive doesn’t mean fat glorification (you dumb internet troll) it means not hating yourself and I’m here for that!

18 thoughts on “Body positive – My sister asked me to be her bridesmaid and I said no

  1. Odette Parfitt says:

    I’ve always thought you shouldn’t lose weight to feel better about yourself, you should lose it because you already love and respect yourself and you want to be healthy. But of course that is always easier said than done – and compliments from other people won’t make you feel better, buuuut we will keep giving them anyway 🙂

  2. Amelia says:

    I don’t really know how to respond. Mainly because:

    1. Telling you you’re beautiful isn’t going to make you believe it.
    2. I’d be a hypocrite if I told you not to feel that way, because I’m guilty of it too. So are many other of your readers.

    I guess it’s about being realistic. It’s that cliched Pinterest image that asks if being fat really the worst thing I can be? Is it worse than being unkind? Racist? Selfish? I’m not saying you’re fat (AT ALL). I don’t think you are. I think you’re gorgeous. But, you’re not happy, and you’re the only one in control of that self-image. Maybe you can change your focus. Ok, your *insert body part* isn’t where you’d like it to be. But, you’re a great mom, you have AMAZING skin and hair, your lips are Instagrammable, your smile makes me smile when it comes up on my feed, and you dress like those girls that make me want to go home and change.

    And, for the love of all things sacred and beautiful, don’t follow pages on social media that promote stick insects as perfect. As soon as I deleted those pages, I started appreciating how much more beautiful normal women are. And men agree. Well, the ones that count do.

  3. Kerry says:

    I have so much to say about this but I don’t even know where to start.
    I wish I could give you my eyes for a day so that you could see what I see because when I look at your pictures on Instagram I see a happy and friendly smile. I see the most beautiful hair. I see such kind eyes. Most of all I see your beauty, all of your beauty – inner beauty, outer beauty, the whole lot.
    I get SO sad to read posts like this because I also missed out on so much because I was held back by my weight and body but luckily I managed to work through it, but now I want you to get through it too.
    Also, without even trying, you have re-ignited my passion for what I am trying to do (my body positivity blog and IG) more than ever because I have to help you in some way, and I have to help all the other women just like you, and me.
    I really loved what you said “I want to lose weight, but not the weight that will get me into a bikini, I want to lose the mental weight” I just LOVE this and if there is ANY WAY I can help you do that then you know where to find me.
    I want you to see your beauty!

    • ella says:

      thank you so much for this. I really really want to be able to not second guess my every move, its exhausting so i will be following you with keen interest, because if you know better you do better

  4. Heidi Jonas says:

    You are such an inspiration to not only me but so many others. I always say, be the best YOU, you can be. Happiness comes from within, so accept yourself for how you look and who you are….

  5. Luzane says:

    I feel privileged that I got to know you at university when we were young and skinny so I feel like I can relate even more and even though we don’t get to see each other we get to see each other’s journeys from a distance. I also get bogged down about the weight and the millions of insecurities then I come across your beautifully written piece like this and it’s really inspiring. I honestly don’t know where I am going with this but thank you for your blog and hopefully the positivity in all areas will flow.

  6. Simone says:

    I too make excuses about going out…because…fat. I pretend I don’t see people. I don’t post pictures of myself. I feel like my identity is fat. I may as well introduce myself by saying: hi. I’m fat and fat. Fat and fat and fat fat fat.

    So many of us battle with this…thin, fat, short, tall, fudgey hair (let me not even start this one)…… It’s a good place once we decide we don’t care anymore. I am not comfortable in my skin. I hate being fat. But I don’t care what people think anymore. Okay maybe a little…but not as much as I did when I was younger. Also it’s a little vain to think our body size is on everybody’s mind? Lol…that’s what I tell myself. Cause I know I ain’t vain!

    Thanks for sharing. I’m glad you’re in the wedding now!

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