Tuesday, April 8, 2008

SPT: There's more to life than just my behind.

This was such an interesting SPT! I remember vividly thinking that my mother had eyes in the back of her head. How else could she know some of the mischief we were getting into when she wasn't even in the room? I even remember checking one time - just to be sure. I totally get now how she knew things, it goes with being a mom. I chose this particular photo because I felt it represented my version of Lelly's SPT.

Since I can remember I've had image issues, whether it's been weight, acne, how clothes fit on me, or how I compare myself to others - I have been like any other woman. Lately, perhaps because of my personal goals or simply because of my age, I've been realizing that a lot of my image issues comes from my past, things that have stuck with me; perhaps it was what someone else said to me, or low self-esteem. I remember waking up one morning last month saying, it's time to just accept me - is it really that easy?. My 35th birthday is next month - shouldn't I be comfortable in my own skin?

In my SPT I planned only to capture me from the back, as this has always been a huge issue of mine and something I seem to always lament. Our home unfortunately has these two closet doors that open up so that you can view yourself from head to toe. Not that I really like to quote Oprah, but she mentioned one time as she was walking past a store window, she did a double take as she didn't realize her butt was that big. Well, I guess I was living in la la land, with our previous home having mirrors that only captured your top halve! But I did my own double take!

When I lined the mirrors up to take the photo, I wasn't expecting it to represent so many things that go on behind me. My wedding day portrait - representing my transformation into womanhood, the clock - representing how fast life is going, photos of my family - representing what is truly important, drawings from my children - representing their talents, finger print marks on the mirrors (from my children) - representing what goes on behind the scenes of our home and the effort it takes to clean and maintain it, and the dogs bed representing that there are more than just our family members to think about.

The me in the wedding photo and the me now in the mirror are different women. We worry about some of the same things, but the now me is realizes that I have a lot more things to be happy about than worrying about my butt size. I want my girls to believe in themselves and that they are beautiful no matter what - period. This is a nice way to think. It allows a better perspective personally and emotionally. I've been a better person for thinking this way, it's hard, but something I'm willing to make last.

Do you have a good self-image?
Did it take a long time to achieve?
Are you still fighting the image battle?
Did you do SPT today?


jenny said...

Wow that was interesting that you were able to capture that all in one photo.

BTW I LOVE your girls Easter dresses. The top of your blog is very cute!

lelly said...

i love what you were able to see in this challenge. i suffer from terrible body image issues - i live blissfully in a house where i mostly can only see myself from the waist up, so... ignorance CAN be bliss sometimes.
really, really great post this week!!

Amber Grannis said...

What an awesome spin on this week's SPT! I loved reading your perspective, thoughts, and inspirations. Very cool post!

Courtney said...

Impressive...very awesome you were able to capture so much in this spt - so inspiring! Great post!

New to this whole blogging world...but stretching a bit and would love to meet all you spt-ers! Mine is private, but email me and I'll send you a permission...courtneymilius@hotmail.com

Alisa said...

I loved how you captured so much in just 1 photo!
Your picture represented so much!

Alisha said...

This is an honest and inspiring post. It really connected with me. I'm also 35. I also have body-issues--I need to get over it--glad you have! I also don't want to pass them on to my little girl! She's 10 and beautiful. I about died a month or so ago when she said she was fat. Yuck. (She's NOT--she got my husband's skinny/flat ab's genes.)

I love the idea of "see our past with the eyes in the back of our heads." Nice interpretation of this SPT.


Kelly said...

I loved reading the journey this SPT took you on, Michelle. Having just seen you in person, I can't imagine you possibly having body issues -- you are totally gorgeous. But, it really goes to show that we all do, and it's so important not to pass those on to our girls, and to find acceptance and peace for ourselves.

By the way, I love your new blog banner. The dresses, the hand holding -- so sweet!

Laurie said...

What a great SPT post. It's inspiring too. I have serious image issues and have lately been wondering how it would be to just "be me" and be confident in that. I think you've helped me out!

Laurie said...

By the way, you look great!

Rachel Bagley Wurtz said...

What a thoughtful and beautiful SPT, Michelle! I loved reading this and the picture is so perfect! You are an amazing woman and it makes me so sad that we, as women, struggle so much to accept and appreciate ourselves in all of our beauty and magnificence! Thank you for sharing, and no, I didn't even realize there was an SPT! Oops! The day is young! :)

Jennfer said...

Oh please! You know your butt looks great in those pants! The question I ask..Does this mirror make my butt look big!
Cute post!

Bren's Life said...

I really love your thoughts. I can totally relate & feel the same at times.. thanks so much for sharing & helping me to think past the moment..
But just so you know, your butt is not big at all unless your comparing it to maybe a 10 yr olds..

Holly said...

I really liked your take on what was going on behind you---hahaha. Great way to capture your view from behind and tie it in with your wedding, children, etc.

Body image issues are so, so hard to work through, I have good days and not so good days about that. It makes me mad just to thinnk about the time and energy wasted on those negative thoughts, but it is hard to stop. Thanks for your perspective!

Wendi said...

Michelle--I just love your blog. Love your thoughts, daily activities with your kids, love it all! You are such a sweet person!

Mandi said...

Michelle, Michelle, Michelle - I so totally get everything you said. I think all women do this and the bigger question is why do we do it? As for the butt thing - this has been my issue (well one of them) my whole life. When I was in 8th grade I went to a school where white people were the minority and it was about 85% black, and they have some amazing butts!!!! Let me tell you I could hold my own in that category, but it has always been my issue and I just try not to see it. However when you walk past a shop window (which I have to do at work everyday) I think is my butt really that big, I have been working on it lately but there are some things I just cant change. The girl I work with laughs and laughs almost everyday about me and my butt - she often says - "Oh yea, I forgot about your enormous butt" and then she almost falls on the floor laughing, its actually a really good thing because she makes me not take myself so seriously.

You are an amazing woman. Beautiful, stong, and a wonderful mother, sister, daughter and friend - these are the things we should focus on!!!!
Luv, Mandi......xxxxx

Amanda said...

What a thought provoking post...and all from one picture. Isn't SPT great?

I think I am really comfortable now with the person I am inside more than I ever have been. I can voice opinions, carry on a conversation and not shy away.

I live in a house with only small mirrors and whenever I see a picture of my whole body I cringe and think "but that's not how I imagine I look"!! Hence, the running again. Thanks for the encouragement. I really hope to keep it up this time.

Love the new banner/dresses/etc. So springish to go with your thawed out sidewalks!

Claudissima said...

wow melinda this is such and insightful post. I think wisdom sometimes comes later than it should!, but it is good to know and acknowledge that you are a powerful influence in your loved ones no matter what we look like. I think I was thinking in doing this spt in some smiliar way...but I am still fighting, not necessarily my image battle, but my rebeliousness in keeping me from my goals.! This is my big battle!

Claudissima said...

sorry, i mean michelle!

Elise said...

Hi Michelle

Your post makes me think of this quote I once heard on Oprah: "A mother who radiates self-love and acceptance actually vaccinates her daughter against low self esteem". I believe these words were in a book written by Naomi Wolf.

I heard this quote just before I had my baby girl and I found these words to be so powerful, that since having our daughter, I am making a conscious effort to accept and embrace what I have.

Amie said...

Really, really great post! You look fabulous and I love all of the background in your picture.

I did't do the spt this week. Maybe I should do it late...