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Wednesday, 14 August 2013

Can we be loved for who we really are?

I have recently got into the habit of checking a newspaper website on a daily basis to read all the latest celebrity gossip. Not because I am particularly bothered, but whilst I am 7 months pregnant and sat at home most of the time, it's nice to read about other people's lives! I'm not proud of it, and I know most of it is complete fiction, but it's a bit of a guilty pleasure!

What has struck me recently is how ridiculous the stories are, and how many of them revolve around weight and appearance. Currently feeling like a beached whale (and looking like one too) my self confidence is taking quite a nose dive, but that's nothing new. I have never been slim and have kept telling myself that one day I will get the body I so want to have. Now... that does not mean a size 6, or even a size 10 - I'm not built for that! But I can certainly improve on what I have!!

Once this baby is born, I will have spent the last 3 and a half years being pregnant and having children. With 14 months between Erin and Lara, and 19 months between Lara and the new baby, every time I have tried to get into shape I have fallen pregnant. This will be our last addition to the family, and I am already getting myself into the mindset that will be needed to get myself into shape in another years time. I am realistic enough to know until next Spring/Summer, I probably won't have the inclination to do anything!

What saddens me, is that celebrities are constantly judged on how they have put on a few pounds, or perhaps even they have dropped down an amazing 3 dress sizes. How quickly have they lost their baby weight? How they have a new fabulous look? But how happy are they!? I have no doubt that most of them are happy with their status, but the pressure that comes with it must be awful. Britney Spears has "spent too much on junk food", Chantelle "needs to rein in her treats", and a member of Little Mix has "dropped down to a size 6".

No wonder we give ourselves a hard time about how we look, when everything around us suggests that there is nothing else we should be thinking about! How frustrating when there are far more important things in life. What's the bigger picture? Ok, so we need to be healthy and active, not only to look after the bodies we've been given, but to enjoy life and our families to the full. That doesn't mean that we can go to the gym three times a week so we can get completely wasted at the weekend. It also doesn't mean that we can make others feel uncomfortable when they don't lose weight as easily as others, or perhaps like the odd treat and work hard to earn it.

What really drives me crazy is how so many people forget that we have to live with the consequences of how we treat ourselves. Yo yo dieting, low self esteem, failing bodies because of binge drinking or drug abuse. The unrealistic social values that are set for us mean that we can have huge pitfalls in the long run due to the pressure we are subjected to.

Right, time to get off my soap box!

Why can't we live in a society that looks for the positive, that celebrates being the individuals we are, and when there are areas that we might be straying, to be gentled guided by caring advice meant to only build us up. Is that too much to ask?!

Here's to all the wonderful people I know, who I love just the way they are.

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