Once upon a time, there was a small chubby girl who loved doing things that did not require moving much. Reading was her favourite past time and food her best friend. Come teenage years when girls around were rediscovering their beauty - within and without, she discovered that her "baby" fat had refused to budge. Blame it on her genes or her hobbies, she grew into a fuller bodied young adult who hated how she looked in the mirror. The love handles, rounded arms and petite frame did no less than harming her self confidence. This saga continued for many years. She thought that she was "too big" to wear western clothes.
Fast forward to a few years back when on an overseas business trip, a colleague went that extra mile to comment that western formal "just did not" become her. She gave up completely. As you might have guessed, this is my story. So why am I telling you my 'dukh bhari Kahani' (sad saga)? Because body issues happen to be one of the top three personal concerns of the millennials. 1 out of 4 people suffers from this. And in really unfortunate cases, give way to serious mental disorders. So here it is- the second half of the story (and the most important bit!). When I migrated to Australia a year back, it left me with less choice, especially for work attire. I had to wear western formals. Initially, I felt vulnerable, I felt exposed. The words of that colleague screamed some sort of inadequacy to my already twisted thought process.
I started noticing people on the streets and comparing them to myself. It would be like "Can I wear what she is wearing?" (Don't judge me yet, I can be pretty vain at times) and at least 5-6 out of 10 times I thought I could. The more I continued with my newly acquired 'people-watching' skills, the more I was convinced that 8 out 10 people (metric matters, u see :)) around me have at least one problem area (thundering thighs, big bums, wobbly arms, matchstick legs,short height, poor skin, crooked nose,love handles, too big/too small boobs, thin but not shapely- we are quite a varied lot!) and they still looked fab! This changed my perspective. I started focusing on the 'strong' points rather than fixating on the 'flaws'.
If you are fighting with yourself each day and secretly hoping to wake up one day to find your issues 'fixed' here's what you can do:
Have a realistic self-image - Accept the fact that you can't change things beyond a certain point and that's the truth
If you are overweight, why don't you do something about it (take your dog out for a run maybe?)
If you have a wholesome but healthy figure, why not make peace with yourself? Trust me, that's de-stressing and liberating
Last but most importantly, DRESS WELL and never forget to wear that smile!
p.s.: Coming to the outfit, I tried to break some rules - wore horizontal stripes (which makes you look broader), statement neck piece (adds more volume to the bust) and opted for sneakers (did nothing to my height) and took these photos.
Till next time, stay beautiful and feel beautiful, Shemanti