My body issues mostly stem from a desire for control. As a college student, food issues started simply because my body and food were one of the only things I felt that I could control. I carried this into young adulthood.
Becoming a mother saved me from my food and body issues. When my firstborn was a girl, I had a choice to make. I could stay stuck in my constant need for control over my body and food, or I could choose to see myself the way my daughter sees me.
She sees me as a safe place.
She sees me as a constant companion.
She sees me as brave.
She sees me as her cheerleader.
She sees me as the most beautiful woman.
She has zero thoughts about my body type. At this point, she is naive about my struggles with food and body issues, and that's exactly how I want to keep it. She gets a clean slate. My hope for her is that she has a healthy relationship with her body and food.
And you know what, this is how I see my daughter.
My daughter is kind.
My daughter is independent.
My daughter is brave.
My daughter is breathtakingly beautiful.
As she grows up and one day has a family of her own, I pray that she chooses to see all of those things in herself. So, for now, I choose to see what my daughter sees in me in hopes that she'll follow in my footsteps.