Be who you are; love who you are; right now!
These words even though they ring true for each one of us does not diminish the fact that the journey to self-love and acceptance is a long and difficult one.
Perhaps, especially so for the plus-size woman or the ‘big’ woman or the ‘obolo’ woman – names and labels which we thoughtlessly call women who are bigger than what fits our society’s narrative of ‘normal’ size.
Hello! No! You can't come in
Have you ever gone into a store, barely said hello, and been greeted with the phrase “please, we don’t have your size ooo”?
Or been to an event where you have to squeeze yourself into a seat and watch your hips spill out of the chair, or as you get up the chair gets up with you?…
Yeah, this is what we deal with every day!
Clearly, this is not enough though because random people still feel the need to yell out obscenities… clearly unsolicited. Sigh.
Advice? No Thank You
It's funny when people want to tell you things about yourself you already know, isn’t it?
Like how our last caller on the show said,” We like you people ooo, but sometimes it's just the stomach that has to go down small”.
These things are said without any thought of the fact that perhaps she already knows and is probably battling with it? Or squeezing all of that into the tightest shorts or waist trainers you can imagine.
What's even worse is when these things are said to younger girls…
Comments which shape how they see themselves and their now blossoming confidence and self-esteem.
Comments which will take years, and therapy to fix.
My advice? Don’t! Just don’t!
I'm forced to ask myself though if we allow people to get away with saying the most derogatory things to us because we personally believe we shouldn’t look the way we do?
Which of course brings us to the self-love conversation.
Justin Bieber said it - Go and love yourself
It's an incredibly thin line between self-acceptance or self-love and recognizing your flaws and working towards a better version of yourself.
How do you love the folds and still find the motivation to lose them.
It's what I call the 'love lose' dialectic.
Holding the tension of two competing truths without them foreclosing on each other. The truth that there are folds you could lose but loving them anyway.
More importantly, can we normalize loving ourselves, and focusing on the good stuff?
There are so many things to love, and speaking those truths to ourselves, our sisters, our children…
The truth is.... no one is perfect….
Oh, one more thing… dress to kill!
People are going to look at you anyways.. so give them something to gawk at….wink
Just the way you are
Love and intimacy…
Well, that’s just another thing isn’t it… Most Ghanaian men love the idea of loving a big woman, having a woman who turns heads, especially if she can killer rock those heels.
But a lot of us honestly are on that journey of asking… of all the women you could be with … why me?
So an extra dose of tenderness is prescribed whilst we find our inner lady gaga and give you that double dose of loving.
In speaking to a lot of women who have lost weight, I noticed something they all said;… if I hadn't learned to love myself at a size 22 I still couldn’t love myself at a size 12.
Kisses to Dr Lyanne Boateng, Kokui Selormey, and Selina Beb who laid it all bare for us on Strong and Sassy.
The author, Animwaa Anim-Addo is the host of Strong & Sassy on JoyFM and a co-host of the Super Morning Show.
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