It has been said the ultimate in boring is when someone insists on telling you their dreams, but please indulge me for a moment.
On Sunday night I had a dream that I was performing a strip tease in front of twenty thousand people (it’s okay: I didn’t get too far). The thing was, I had perfect confidence, even with the body I have now.
To put this into context, I struggled with my weight from the age of thirteen. It was only in 2018 when I was introduced to the low carbohydrate way of eating that I found what my body had been wanting all along. My migraines stopped, my – ahem – digestive issues cleared up and my energy levels increased. It was just a side effect that the weight fell off and I found the waist that had been missing in action all these years.
Roll forward to February when I was put on my first dose of steroids. Everyone knows that steroids make you gain weight, and everyone thinks, “Well, not me, because I can control my eating.” No, you can’t – well, I couldn’t anyway. I called it my steroid wolf, this constant craving for food. Not just food, but carbs. After two lots of steroids, I have ballooned. Steroids cause the weight to settle on the mid-section while your limbs atrophy. My arms and legs are still slim but when I look down, I can’t see my feet anymore. And I hate it!
Back to confidence. I’m not just talking about our bodies, although I’ll return to them later. What talents do you possess that you won’t claim because you don’t think you’re good enough? My children say I can draw and paint well. I know I can’t because my artist friends are so much better than I. The people at church love my singing, but I won’t even join the choir because I know my sister, who has worked on her voice since she was a teenager, has had many lessons, and who now sings with a prestigious choir in the West Country, is so much better than I.
My point is that we don’t do those things we have a small talent for because we feel our poor light is dim in comparison to others. We tend to compare ourselves to those who are leading lights in their field; to those who are professionals. Our small talents, however, can be a source of joy to ourselves and to others.
Back to bodies. Each of us has a body. If we are lucky, our bodies function reasonably well: they get us to where we want to go, and our heart keeps pumping the blood around to keep us alive.
So, we don’t look like a model; it’s not our job to look like a model. We shouldn’t be worried about having a beach ready body. Instead, we can think, with confidence, “There’s a beach. I have a body. I’m ready.”