Gams. Pegs. Stems. Pins. The two meat sticks that walk me about, run away from scary clowns or pump a swing (because that’s something I do often). Ya know: Legs.
All day, every day they move me, lugging around my top heavy body (yes, I’m talking about my boobs), and with pretty much zero thanks for it. I hide them, resent them, and even try not to look at them. And for all they do for me, serving me all day long? What a fucking dick I am!
My feet get it even worse, being at the bottom of the whole pile, and I do my best to treat them with at least some respect. They get the daily scrub and loofah, and I keep them soft with a thick lotion and some creamy avacodo oil. And every few weeks they get a nice soak in scented oils and powdered concoctions meant to assist in resting my weary totes, followed by a thick application of shiny polish to my chubby piggies.
But my legs? Nope.
When I was 15 and hiking a trail to the beach in a new swimsuit, a friend walking behind me asked me if her legs jiggled. She was watching my untoned teenaged legs, curious about her own, and while that comment was made without malice, it affected me wholly. I began to compare my body to pretty much anyone thinner than me – not something necessarily uncommon for a young girl, how very unfortunate that may be.
If there’s a target market for an eating disorder, in all my feeble insecurities, I fit the profile, alright, although it wouldn’t be until my late twenties when I finally admitted that’s what my “bad habits” amounted to. Fifteen years of my life saw me binging & purging, tripling up on laxatives and aphedra (when it was legal and marketed as an energy pill in health stores), and eating one evening meal after 3-5 hours of daily excercise. I was obsessed with the diary I kept in my purse – deemed the Fat Book – in which I kept the details of my eating throughout the day, and how I felt about it all, with clipped phrases about feeling glutenous after eating three bites of dinner and wanting to cut off my would-be love handles with a carving knife. And my relationship with the scale was so bad that my ex-husband took a sledgehammer to it in the garage one afternoon.
Another “that was then” time in my life – and dammit, if I’m not proud to say so! Today? It’s easy enough to say that I don’t struggle with my self esteem, but it’d be a lie to say that is the truth all of the time – or even most of it. But what I do carry with me is a belief in myself – and a desire to worm my way into the very best version of me. And the first thing? Allows me to dig for self-confidence when I am in need. And the other? Is the reason for the digging.