Embrace: Lauren

Full disclosure: the following post, written by Lauren Bersaglio, originally appeared on her blog, and was later featured on the Nurture Principles blog, which is where I came across it.  After reading it I contacted Lauren to see if she would mind if I re-published it as part of Embrace:Me, and she was generous enough to grant me permission to do so.  I’m thrilled that she did, because the message she shares here is perfectly in line with what Embrace:Me is all about.  So thank you, Lauren!

Dear Body,

I am sorry for the first time I blamed you for the attention I wanted from him but didn’t get.

I am sorry for the first time I walked in to the gym with a new purpose: to defeat you.

I am sorry for the first time I denied you food, and the second, and the third…

I am sorry for comparing you to other bodies and feeling that you didn’t measure up.

I am sorry for the hours I spent in front of the mirror cursing you, and for incessantly pinching and squeezing you in rebellion of the parts of you I didn’t like and that I wanted to go away.

I remember barely having enough energy to make it until the afternoon without falling asleep from lack of energy and yet still denying you nourishment, and I apologize.

I remember punishing you in the gym until we’d fall into a pile on the floor, crying out in pain and fatigue…and I am sorry.

I am sorry for calling you names: fat, ugly, pale, disproportioned…

I am sorry for yelling and screaming at you in disgust as I threw all of my pain and anger back at you.

I am sorry for not accepting you when you were simply being what God made you.

I am sorry for not standing up for you when others put you down.

And for letting strangers touch you, have a part of you, I am sorry.

I am sorry for the times I used my nails or a blade to cut you – I know now that the blood lost from that will never be regained.

I am sorry for forcing you into clothes that were too small because I couldn’t accept you for the size you were.

I am sorry for stuffing you full of food until you were left immobile and in pain…over and over again.

For the innumerable times I used my finger or a tooth brush to purge you of the food I made you eat – I am sorry.

And for blaming you for every love lost, I apologize.

But most of all, I am sorry for the lost time; for the time spent apart, absent from life, when we could have been enjoying it together.

We can never get that time back; but one thing we can do is make the most of the time we do have, and so I want to make you some promises –

I promise to feed you and nourish you to the extent (and no more) that you need. I promise to rebuild your strength with exercise that is not aimed at harming you. I promise to respect you and not give you away to the hands of just anybody. I promise to not glare at you in the mirror or poke and pinch at you in disgust.

But most importantly, I promise to love you because you are beautiful and you deserve it.

This is my pledge to you.

I will not turn back.

With love,

Lauren Bersaglio

You can read more from Lauren, who also vlogs (is that a verb yet?) regularly, on her website.  And while you are doing so, take a few minutes to consider submitting content for Embrace:Me.  What better way to make yourself feel good?!

And speaking of feeling good…

Embrace:Me 30-day challenge Day 3: I think today was probably my ‘nicest-to-me’ day so far.  I finally did what I’ve been saying I was going to do for ages, and put in an order with Fresh Direct that was delivered on Saturday.  Today, I brought foods to work for snacks.  I can’t remember the last time I brought snacks with me to work–I’ve gotten so used to just dealing with being hungry and out of it lately–and it made such a huge difference in my day to be able to snack on some string cheese mid-morning, and an apple in the afternoon.  No more periods of feeling like I’m about to fall asleep, or like a zombie!  I can’t believe I had forgotten how good it feels to feed my body when it’s hungry.

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11 comments

  1. what a powerful post! thanks for posting this. it was good to read.

    i’m trying really hard on the challenge. today, i ate TEN servings of fruits and vegetables and foam rolled for 5 minutes. i’d say that’s being nice to myself. 🙂

  2. I LOVE this post – for Girls on the Run this week, we are focusing on negative self talk – it is something that I have to work on daily! I think we should all write a letter like this to ourselves, and post it where we can see it every day!

    1. That sounds like a really great idea, LauraJayne! I try to re-visit my Embrace:Me post whenever I’m getting overwhelmed by negative self-talk (which happens more often than I’d like to admit). It seems to help to have things written down somewhere–it makes the positive thoughts so much more concrete!

  3. excellent points. i have been thinking lately about how i don’t appreciate my body like i should, and how i don’t treat it (feed it/take care of it) like i should either! i blame my body for being jiggly yet continue to eat bags of candy… need to whip my *brain* into shape, not my body.

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