While this month is the first time I’ve hosted a guest blogger series I did write a piece once as a guest blogger. It was for the blog A Penny For Them. I wrote about my favorite theme, LOVE! The fabulous Penny was on holiday and invited bloggers to post while she was traveling. It was great to meet other people sharing all sorts of topics. I’m not on holidays, but I thought by hearing different perspectives it would be a wonderful way to gain new insight on the subject of LOVE! And though I don’t have much, I still like to share whatever I have, including now this little corner of the internet called Yankee Doodle Paddy.
I’ve had the pleasure of meeting in person today’s awesome author Rebecca Flynn from Ireland. She is a force to be reckoned with that’s for sure. Rebecca is a mother and activist from Dublin. She runs a Body Positive community on Facebook and Instagram and believes every person deserves the right to live in and love their body regardless of what it looks like. She definitely ” talks the talk and walks the walk” and when you read her amazing LOVE letter to her body you’ll understand.
I love my belly. I’ve had it for 35 years and I’ve only started to love it in the past year. Maybe because there’s so much more of it to love??! Yes, it’s bigger than its ever been, do I care? Not one single bit. All because in the past couple of years I found body positivity.
I spent my teen years and twenties battling with my body image, feeling guilty about food and worrying that I didn’t look how society told me I should look. I wasted years of my life trying to make myself smaller and reach an impossible body standards. Now I grieve those years but I also feel really lucky that I found body positivity at a relatively young age.
Of all the parts of my body that I’m learning to love (all of them) why have I picked my belly first and foremost? Because it’s the part I used to hate most intensely, and it deserves to be loved. Women are told to hide our big tummies, find flattering clothes, keep doing those crunches, drink this tea to get rid of bloating and on and on it goes. All this does is stigmatise and shame us about a part of body that we should really be kind and loving to.
My belly is so many things to me. It is where I feel my feelings, whether it’s the ache of worry or sadness, or the flittering butterflies of love and lust, or the happiness of beating music when I’m dancing, or the churning feeling of fear. It tells me so much about any given emotion I might be feeling. It was home to my son in the, sometimes uncomfortable and tiring, but mostly beautiful months of pregnancy. I grew a human that I would love more fiercely than anything in the world in there, simply put: wow. It’s the body part most associated with the joy of eating delicious food. It’s inner workings have so far been healthy and I am so so lucky for that reason alone. It houses some pretty badass organs that help keep me ticking over happily and healthily every day. It is so many wonderful things. How could I not love it? How could I reject it, criticize it, pinch angrily at my rolls, feel shame about it? Something that has given me so much in my life and will continue to do so for years to come.
So while I’ve spent this past year working on loving all of me, for the month of February, the month of love, I wanted to single out my belly and tell it thank you and that I love it. My belly, and my body, is my friend and I will treat it with the kindness and love it deserves.
@BoPoIreland on Instagram
Body Positive Ireland on Facebook
Thanks Rebecca for being so honest and open. You’re a great role model for women AND men, young and old, to LOVE the skin you’re in!
P.S. If you’d like the opportunity to share a story about LOVE for this guest blogger series, please leave a comment and I’ll be in touch.