08 Mar Your Body Is Beautiful…
When I was married, I used to (unconsciously) adhere to this atavistic belief that my body belonged to my now ex-husband. I would get uncomfortable if another man found me attractive. I did not want to invite the male gaze. I didn’t want to dress provocatively. Not that I dress that way now, but interestingly, as I was going through my closet the other day, I noticed a stark difference in my wardrobe before divorce and post-divorce.
An overwhelming majority of the clothes that I bought around the time I was married and what I wore at the time had very high necklines, most of them covered even my collarbone. Not that being betrothed indicates some sort of confinement, but it is just interesting how that came to be.
Typical outfits pre-divorce:
Now that I am single, it is interesting how my wardrobe evolved. I became more comfortable showing off parts of my body I wasn’t before. I began wearing clothes that accentuated my cleavage. This move was apparently so drastic that people who knew me when I was married wondered if I had breast augmentation surgery. This would always throw me in fits of laughter then self-reflection on how seemingly flat-chested I must have been.
I then realized that it wasn’t because I had a change in marital status. It was about me loving myself more. When I was young, I grew up knowing that I was not the cultural ideal of beauty in my country. I was dark, scrawny, and my long limbs had scars from sports, spelunking, climbing rocks and trees. So my relationship with my body was less of a celebration and more of a tolerable convenience of utility.
After a lot of self-improvement work and therapy, I started to love and accept myself more. I became even more comfortable with my body. I started SEEING my body in beautiful, new ways I never allowed before, which made me start LOOKING at my body in new, different ways as well.
When I started wearing lower-cut clothing, I found myself really loving the way my breasts look: the curves, the dips, the softness of my skin, and the way the light creates shadows in and around them. It was interesting how a part of my body that I never paid that much attention before, now became so mesmerizing to me.
Then the rest of my body followed. I felt joyous. I felt beautiful. It made me feel liberated, as I finally saw my body as glorious regardless of what other people may perceive it to be. And ultimately, this is all that matters. Because no matter what other people may say, if you do not see yourself as something (beautiful, sensual, powerful, capable, interesting, etc.), it will never be true because it is not true for you.
And this is part of what being a woman is all about. It is a journey about exploring and accepting your entirety: your body—its every nook and cranny, scars and folds, wrinkle and dimple; your sensuality—your sex drive, what turns you on, and how you embody transcendent pleasure with your physical being; your mind—its very eccentricities, quirks, compulsions, ideas, and imaginings; your heart—who and what it loves, its secret longings that even your mind cannot contain or deny; and your soul—how it connects to the universe and the divine and what enables you to go beyond the physical.
I’m really loving this journey and I am so thankful that you have joined me.
Lots of love,