Written by Jamie:
No, I don’t love my legs, actually. I kinda hate my legs. My calves are so big that I have a hard time buying tall boots. I don’t look skinny in skinny jeans. I have cellulite on the back of my thighs. My legs are just…big. I look like a soccer player, only I don’t play soccer. My butt is too big. I do not love my legs.
But when I stop and realize all that they are capable of, I am in awe. These thick legs of mine carried me through a half marathon. They’ve played lots of different sports over the years. They allow me to run and play with my dog. I can ride a bike, a horse, a paddle-board, and a surfboard. They have taken me to beautiful places. But most importantly, they walk me through each day. I can literally go outside and do whatever I want and not have to worry about my ability to move myself.
Sometimes when I’m caught up in a pity party because I don’t have Carrie Underwood’s legs, I stop and think that there are people who would literally do anything to be able to get up and simply walk to the kitchen. The fact that some people are unable to walk breaks my heart and is so unfortunate. What would also be unfortunate is if I couldn’t see that; if I was so blinded my own self-loathing that I couldn’t see how fortunate I am.
I have a friend, Chris, who was on an ATV hunting trip several years ago. The guide accidentally flipped the ATV. Everyone walked away except Chris. He ended up paralyzed from the waist down. He was involved with a law suit that sued the company for millions of dollars. When it comes to money, he is set for life. But guess what? He said he’d give it all back in a heartbeat to be able to use his legs again.
Sometimes you really don’t know what you’ve got until its gone. We take for granted all the amazing things our bodies allow us to do because they don’t fit into the perfect, Hollywood mold. We can easily get caught up in the negatives instead of expressing the positives with gratitude and pride.
I’ve learned that attitude is truly everything. Why dwell on the negatives when you could revel in the positives? Why spend your life trying to hide your body when you could celebrate it and treat it right?
Let’s rewind and address my previous critiques one by one with a new attitude:
My calves are so big, I have a hard time buying tall boots.
People have asked me more than once how I’ve gotten my calves to grow. They do calf raises everyday and still have little noodles for calves. Mine however, have shape and muscle, and people are envious of something I was born with.
I don’t look skinny in skinny jeans.
But my legs look awesome in shorts and skirts.
I have cellulite on the backs of my thighs.
WHAT. WOMAN. DOESN’T. And if someone wants to judge me on that, well that sounds like their problem, not mine.
My legs are just…big.
Maybe we rephrase this one, as I’ve been complimented on my legs more times than I can count. Clearly, the way I see my legs and the way other people see my legs aren’t the same. No one compliments you on having “big” legs. The compliments I’ve received have been on my strong, muscular legs.
My legs look like a soccer player’s, only I don’t play soccer.
Have you seen soccer players’ legs?! Hello, sexy muscles!
My butt is too big.
When was the last time you heard someone say “Dang! She has a nice booty! Reminds me of a nice, flat sewer cap!”
I believe that sometimes we just need to realize what our “imperfect” body parts allow us to do on a daily basis, and re-train our brains. Try making a list of everything you dislike about your body, then next to it, write a time that body part made you feel good, or essential roles that body part plays in your every day life or in the past.
I can not thank Jamie enough for this authentic, compelling, and vulnerable guest post! I am truly moved and inspired by her attitude and positive thinking in such a challenging area. Working out is a privilege (another great guest post you should check out!). If we can move our bodies, go to work, take a walk, drive a car, ride a bike, climb a tree…we are blessed immeasurably! I am working on your assignment today Jamie!
Jamie and Cassie