All Shapes and Sizes

Wednesday, March 11 |

China Disabled People's Performing Art Troupe

A few months ago I watched a thought provoking documentary  called Naked on the Inside. The film included five people who had major body image issues. Each person explained what their personal body image problems were: an ex con wanted to remove his gang tattoos, an ex model was recovering from anorexia, a woman was in the process of deciding whether she would proceed with a mastectomy, a man who danced professionally was born without legs and a woman moved to Asia to live as a man without surgery. All the stories were very different but you saw the same vulnerability in everyone eyes. The end goal was for each of them, privately, to get undressed in front of the camera. Each person's reaction to getting undressed in front of the camera was unique:  someone zone out, another  become very self conscious, but one person actually become more confidence as if they'd gained a sense of freedom.

Is it okay for someone who has been disfigured to be confident with the body they have. Is it denial to look in a mirror and see scars and take comfort. Working at groups made me always want to be my best so that the people that loved there would be able to follow my example. I wasnt them to be confident in their body, whether they where in a wheelchair or were able to talk. No matter how hard I tired to be a good person I always felt like I learned more from them than they learned from me. One  16 years old girl with a tramatic head injury tought me a thing or two about confidence. Because of her injury she had problem with her short term memeory. To the staff that meant we would have to hear the smae stories over and over agian. One story I looked forwrd to hearing was the story of her car crash. 

One night she was in the passenger seat with her cousin driving home. A drunk hit their pushing the head on into a tree. At that point she would lift up her shirt to show us the scar on her hip. The scar came from the seat blet diddging into her hip. Though she hit her head her life was spared becuase of the seat belt. She was so proud of that scar becuase it always reminded her of her choice to wear a seat belt that ended up saving her life.

Your body may not look like you want it to, but learn to love as it is now. Think of all the things that your body has given you. If you were no longer here physically who or what would you miss? Tkae time to thank your body for all of the years of health you've maintined, the sport that you participated, the children that you've concieved. Even thank it for all of the breaths you taken through out your life. No your body doesn't get credit for everything good that's happened in your life, but I'm sure it deserve more credit than it recieves. So even if it feels siily, stand in the mirror today and thank you body for ten things that you are gratful for, scars and all. 

Helpful Links:
Watch Naked On The Inside by registering on Off The Fence