I have been skinny most of my life and a “comfort over fashion” kind of girl since I was young. I joined a boarding high school and a few month’s into it I started gaining weight. I loved every moment of it cause I looked healthier and curvy.
The all girls high school I went to, privacy was like telling Santa you want a unicorn for Christmas — It ain’t gonna happen! So this one time I was showering in the open layout bathrooms then this girl makes a random comment about the stretch marks on my behind. I remained silent cause to be honest I didn’t even know I had stretch marks on my butt.
Hold on! Before you roll your eyes out of their socket and start judging me let’s make this clear. One we didn’t have full length mirrors in our bathrooms; two the marks were weirdly under the lower part of my butt so it was hard to see (not anymore though) and lastly I didn’t have a habit of trying to look at my butt when I was naked.
I so badly wanted to lose weight so that my body would go back to normal.
I felt insecure and too ashamed to tell anyone that my stretch marks bothered me. I felt cheated out of something basic and I was angry. I didn’t like this whole curvy body package and I wanted to be skinny. My deepest bout of self hate came when I noticed more stretch marks on my knees around my legs. It bothered me a lot. I could no longer wear my shorts – that included my cute short dresses and skirts. Come rain and sunshine I would be in trousers and jeans.
I was devastated. I always wanted to hide them. As cliché as it may sound, I was desperate to find out what people’s views on stretch marks were (this happened in my last year of high school) and that’s when I learnt they are not as bad as I imagine and people have them in different places it just doesn’t bother most people as it did to me.
I mean I was just trapped in this bubble that I didn’t notice the women around me walk with their stripes unapologetically. I gave myself a choice: Keep hating my marks or find a way to get out of my “oh! I have stretch marks” bubble.
Well the irony of life, I did end up losing weight but that meant more stretch marks. I’ve learnt to fake like my stretch marks – I recite my mantras to be strong enough to embrace them cause to be honest I didn’t ask for them and I just can’t wish them away.
Coming To Terms
Stretch marks are normal, I’ve always known that but never really accepted that fact. People around us and the world in general just have a way of making it sound like a deformity. “Oh look at her stretch marks” sounds like you’ve seen an alien!
Stop it! I’m learning to embrace my insecurities and your petty comments make me want to throw a shoe in your face.
The point of this story is body insecurities be it stretch marks, tiny bottom, a mole, height, anything that makes you self-conscious can pretty much destroy your self-esteem and ability to love yourself. But such insecurities shouldn’t define who you are as a person. I won’t pretend I’m over having stretch marks, they do bother me sometimes but are no longer on my top 20 list of problems.
It is worth telling my story if anyone out there finds comfort in knowing they are not alone and being insecure is okay just don’t let it get into your head and push you to depression, self harm or self-hate.
Over To You:
What are some of your body insecurities? How do you deal with them?