Camera/Photo Shy

I’ve always been camera/photo shy. I know the reasons why, I’ve always known. Being insulted and made fun of for my looks by my mother has made us with very low body self-esteem. We have worked long and hard on this issue, and I don’t think that I have gotten very far when it comes to assessing my face right now with any sense of accuracy or love or acceptance.

Unfortunately others have continued the verbal abuse over the years. I really don’t understand why someone would feel that it is their right to insult another person for any reason based on societal beauty standards or some males ideas about how a woman’s body should be. I tend to try to discount believing anyone who would be cruel to me.

Someone who I thought was one of my best online friends, not a blog friend, more than five years ago, could not find it within herself to say one nice or kind thing after I shared a photo of myself with her and she actually insulted me. I can’t begin to tell you how devastating that was for me. So I have even been more sensitive since then and would really try to avoid being on camera for any reason.I will have to say that she is the only friend that I have ever known, online and in real life, who ever chose to insult me like that.

I can’t imagine my best online friend Fish ever saying or doing something like that. But my friend Fish is so pure and so sweet I can never imagine her hurting me.

After all, if someone who says they love you and are your friend feels free to insult your looks, well that hurts and it hurts even more than if it was a stranger in public who is an ass. I think she realized that she had hurt me and her next email was to say that I actually, was not so bad. I can’t imagine how much I would have to hate someone to insult them directly about their facial features or body. I can’t imagine ever doing that. We stopped being friends not that long after that, for a huge number of reasons.

It’s bizarre because now I can look at my childhood photos and see that I was indeed pretty, beautiful even. And I can see that in photos from twenty years ago. I can see that I am pretty.

I still have trouble really seeing myself accurately now, but I hope that changes for the better as I continue to heal. My great niece always wants to take a photo of me at family gatherings and a lot of the time I say no. I let her do it a few times a year. She messages me copies. It disgusts me. I hate each and every one of them. I’m not sure if I still am laboring under body dysmorphic issues or if I have really gotten ugly. I think it is that I still have body dysmorphic disorder and cannot see myself accurately.

I don’t think that I am pretty. I don’t think that I am tolerable. But fuck pretty. I won’t live the rest of my life pursuing pretty or those who think that is what I need to be and who are hateful when they think I don’t measure up to their invented standards.

I insist that my value and my treatment not be based on my looks or my body and I reject anyone who feels the need to do so. And I know that those who love and value my personality, my good qualities, my soul, my goodness and kindness would never judge me by my face, would never hurt or wound me on purpose. I find that comforting.

Update on Present for Favorite Body Part

For Christmas last year I decided to buy and give myself a present for my favorite body part and my least favorite body part, as exercises in self care and body love. I chose body lotion for my least favorite body part and hair conditioner for my favorite body part, my hair.

I love my hair. I have been in love with my hair since I was in my early twenties. It hasn’t always been a wonderful love affair, bed hair being something that I have really hated at times in my life, but it is a very strong love. I have dark brown hair and dark brown eyes and they have always been things, as an adult, that I am proud of and have a lot of love for.

I love the different colors in my hair and I love the soft, silky way that it feels when I touch my hair. I had noticed that my hair was not normal for the last few years. I think that a big part of the issue is that my health issues with my tummy and digestive system interferes with properly metabolizing all the vitamins and minerals that my body needs. Another issue is that I had gotten out of the habit of using conditioner.

When my tummy issues are very bad and when I take the strongest medication for that issue I have had hair loss and I love my hair so much, it is hard to cope with even some hair loss. I won’t take the strongest medication and I try my best to improve this health issue. I have tried doing less handling of my hair, less shampooing and no conditioning. But my hair got kind of dull.

So for my Christmas present I wanted to go out and buy a really nice conditioner for my hair. I wandered around the store several visits and just could not decide. There are so many things and then there was the gluten intolerance concern and I wanted to buy something that I knew for sure was gluten free. So I went home each time without anything. Finally I bought some shampoo/conditioner combination and that was awful, nothing improved and it felt wrong on my hair. I had had bad experiences with this product in the past, so I really regretted giving it another chance.

Finally I bought a conditioner that fit my hair type and started using it. The first and second times brought an improvement and that made me very happy and satisfied that I could take small steps to improve my body and to show love and care for it. I am continuing with that. Today when I showered, I shampooed and conditioned my hair. It just feels soo lovely. 🙂

Give a Gift to Your Favorite Body Part

This wasn’t a suggestion from the book, but I thought that it was a good idea as well, especially since survivors of childhood abuse often don’t take good care of their bodies and have never learned good self-care. I thought that any extra encouragement to take better care of myself is a good idea.

For a long time, I’ve loved my hair. I have loved it’s color and it’s silkiness. So it was easy and quick to identify my favorite body part and pick a gift for it for this Christmas.

I decided to buy myself some very wonderful shampoo and conditioner and to use them. I often, unfortunately, omit conditioning my hair. I can really tell the difference, but I often don’t. Since I was almost out of conditioner, it is a good idea for me to buy it as a present, because in the past I would just keep forgetting to buy conditioner.

As a small present to myself yesterday evening I shampooed and conditioned my hair, leaving the conditioner in for a good while. It feels so wonderful and makes me happy. So I guess doing it is a gift both ways, to my hair and back to me in enjoyment.

What is your current favorite body part and what gift would you buy for yourself? Think about doing it.

Good and healing thoughts to all our favorite and least favorite body parts and everything in between.

Healing Quotes 638-640

“Your body is the piece of the universe you’ve been given.”

~ Geneen Roth, Women Food And God

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“Every atom in your body came from a star that exploded. And, the atoms in your left hand probably came from a different star than your right hand. It really is the most poetic thing I know about physics: You are all stardust.”

~ Lawrence Kraus

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“It is a strange and wonderful fact to be here, walking around in a body, to have a whole world within you and a world at your fingertips outside you.  It is an immense privilege, and it is incredible that humans manage to forget the miracle of being here.  Rilke said, ‘Being here is so much,’ and it is uncanny how social reality can deaden and numb us so that the mystical wonder of our lives goes totally unnoticed.  We are here.  We are wildly and dangerously free.”

~ John O’Donohue

Healing Quotes 605-611

“I can’t be shaken anymore, by anyone. I’ve got to that point in my life that if you’re not a good person, and you can’t make me feel good with love and life, then fuck off, basically.”

~ FKA twigs 
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“At that moment I was sure. That I belonged in my skin. That my organs were mine and my eyes were mine and my ears, which could only hear the silence of this night and my faint breathing, were mine, and I loved them and what they could do.”
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~ Dave Eggers
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“When you’re different, sometimes you don’t see the millions of people who accept you for what you are. All you notice is the person who doesn’t.”
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~ Jodi Picoult, Change of Heart
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“No matter my size, no matter my health. I am allowed to exist and I should be able to do so without persecution.”
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~ fatfunkbabe

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“You are not your bra-size, nor are you the width of your waist, nor are you the slenderness of your calves. You are not your hair color, your skin color, nor are you a shade of lipstick. Your shoe-size is of no consequence. You are not defined by the amount of attention you get from males, females, or any combination thereof. You are not the number of sit-ups you can do, nor are you the number of calories in a day. You are not your mustache. You are not the hair on your legs. You are not a little red dress.You are no amalgam of these things.
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You are the content of your character. You are the ambitions that drive you. You are the goals that you set. You are the things that you laugh at and the words that you say. You are the thoughts you think and the things you wonder. You are beautiful and desirable not for the clique you attend, but for the spark of life within you that compels you to make your life a full and meaningful one. You are beautiful not for the shape of the vessel, but for the volume of the soul it carries.”

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~ Michael Wriston
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“Start ignoring people who threaten your joy. Literally, ignore them. Say nothing. Don’t invite any parts of them into your space.”
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~ Alex Elle.
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“However, some things must be said, and there are times when silence becomes an accomplice to injustice.”
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~ Ayaan Hirsi Ali

Birthday Week Day 1

Well yesterday was my birthday week, day one. I was all stoked and excited to do something good for me. It just so happened that I was taking it easy yesterday, no bus riding to the library, just a sort of quiet day.

I biked over the local Dairy Queen and got a hot fudge sundae. I sat out on a picnic bench in their outside area and read a book, for a long time. It was great. It was one of my favorite areas to go and read before moving. I even thought of it and longed for it when in Ohio.

I found out some time ago on the history channel that sundaes are called sundaes because of our American history of protestantism, guilt, and shame around food and the need to earn your way into heaven, rather than what the Bible teaches. i’m not sure if this is a story or the real truth. Ice cream as a new item of lust was new and well loved treat.

Apparently there was so much opposition to ice cream sodas and sundaes were created in response for something less sinful to eat on Sunday, hence the name. So I learned that sundaes were considered so sinful because they tasted so good, but less sinful than ice cream sodas.

They are sinful, but I sometimes wonder why they would allow something so sinful to be served on Sunday, holy of all holy days in a protestant week.

Well it was wonderful and sinful. And I ate it on a Sunday. But I didn’t feel sinful, not one little bit.

Body Image

 

Survivor Resource Pages (Forty pages of resources, non-profit organizations, articles, and healing support for survivors of child sexual abuse, rape, sexual assault, domestic violence, and dealing with the aftermath of child sexual abuse.)

Adios Barbie

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Love Your Body: Tips to Improve Your Body Image

Exercise Improves Body Image For Fit and Unfit Alike

35 Simple Ways to be Beautiful

Love Your Body, Love Yourself

Talking to Your Critical Voices

No Body is Perfect: Body Image and

Female Body Image

Changing Your Body Image

Body Image: Living In Our Bodies

Build a Better Body Image

Once Upon a Time

Female Body Image

Shame

A Distorted Body Image

Distorted Body Image Can Have Tragic Results

Beauty and Body Image in the Media

Multicultural Women and Body Image

Body Image and Transgendered

Beyond the Body Betrayed

Through Women’s Eyes, Finally

Fat Girls (Don’t) Dance

Fear of Fat: Why Images of Overweight Women are Taboo

Reassessing the Fear of Fat

About- Face

National Association of Fat Acceptance

Men and Body Image

Enhancing Male Body Image