We’ve all been there, sitting at the corner of frustrated and sad, ready to cry our eyes out or scream into our pillow or simply stare blankly into the mirror feeling some type of hopeless. The “Bad Body Day” (BBD) plagues everyone, regardless of size, gender/non-gender, sexuality, age, relationship status… everyone at one point has woken up & been disgusted (or at the very least displeased) with something about their body for at least one day in their life – even those that are deep into the body love journey! What I’m trying to say here is that you, reader, are most certainly not alone.
I can remember one of my first really terrible “Bad Body Day” meltdowns quite vividly. I was 21 and didn’t weigh as much as I do now, but had arrived on that cusp of straight & plus sized clothing. I was already feeling frustrated that I wasn’t able to just fit in one or the other (at the time, my preference was straight sizes, as this was long before I even knew a Fat Positive Movement existed), but to top it off, I was going out with a friend that evening and wanted to look flawless despite feeling like total roadkill. I had tried on countless outfits – from short dresses to jeans and a cute top – nothing made me feel good. With each outfit change, I grew even more frustrated, shedding the skin of ill fitting clothes & tossing it carelessly on the floor. At one point, I just lost it & I ripped all of my clothing off of the hangers, tears stinging my eyes, calling myself every horrible name in the book in a fit of rage and frustration. My walk-in closet looked like a tornado ran through it, and my heart felt trampled on. I am lucky to say that was one of my worst because I know there are others out there who have been driven to harmful acts against themselves, and my heart aches for them.
Following that BDD episode, the friend I had plans with came over to help me pick up the pieces of it all. She helped me pick an outfit that made me feel comfortable, and we went out. I don’t remember the results of that night. I don’t really remember if I had fun or not (knowing my company, I probably did because she’s just a stellar human). Instead, I focused on the bad of it all. The BBD is ingrained in my memory, and many more have followed, especially as life went on & I gained weight.
But How Does Someone Overcome a “Bad Body Day?”
Getting out of the BBD funk can be difficult. I am a firm believer in allowing myself to have & accept these days (a lesson I learned from one of my favorite people – Jes Baker, who is linked above), but not to let them be the end-all-be-all of my existence. There are a few things I do before, during, and after my BBDs now as a fat woman, which I think are helpful for me. I hope one or more of these ends up being helpful for your next “Bad Body Day,” too. <3
- Surround My (Digital) Self with Body Positive Representation: This one actually can start before a BBD, and I’ve found that having this one at the ready is immensely helpful. Go on Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, Tumblr – every social platform you can – and follow Fat Positive bloggers, fashionistas, photographers, artists – anyone who is immensely fat positive! I thoroughly enjoy seeing so many lovely, beautiful fat people, art, and clothing taking over my news feeds. Just to get you started, here are loads of Instagram accounts I personally recommend for body love & fat positivity:
- @virgietovar, Virgie Tovar
- @itskristinchirico, Kristin Chirico
- @themilitantbaker, Jes Baker
- @gwynniebee, Gwynnie Bee
- @skinnedkneesnet, Jen Venegas
- @aidybryant, Aidy Bryant
- @radfatvegan, Rachele Cateyes
- @itsmekellieb, Kellie Brown
- @marylambertsing, Mary Lambert
- @monifcplussizes, Monif C Plus Size Clothing
- @mariesouthardospina, Marie Southard
- @daniebb3, Danielle Brooks
- Look at Myself in the Mirror (in Underwear or Naked) & Repeat Positive Affirmations About My Body: Oh yes, I have definitely stared my almost naked self down in a full length mirror to say nice things to my reflection. It may sound silly, but for me, it’s helpful. I like to tell my body what it is I love about it – everything from my large, firm butt to my arms providing a big, squishy, creamy canvas for my absolute favorite tattoo. I find that on even the toughest BBDs, I take the time to at least shell out one compliment to myself in the mirror. I’m a fucking warrior woman, and I think I deserve nice things said about me by me from time-to-time, right?
- Have a Snuggle with a Soft Blanket & Another Living Being: My significant other, CP, is usually my go to, as he offers me the best hugs when I’m sad; however, when CP is at work, my cat Tilly is backup. Our dog Frankie is far too wiggly & our other cat Prudence is always hiding, so my boisterous boy, Tilly is usually the target of my affection. Other living beings who I would curl up with if distance weren’t an issue: my mother (#DolorestheDiva, if you’re curious), my partner in crime Kyria (obviously), and Lucy (my parents’ dog). Sometimes its nice to have another warm body embrace you and tell you that things are okay. For me it’s extremely comforting and makes me feel loved, which is sometimes all I ever need in the first place.
- Move Around / Do Something: Whether it be baking something challenging and new, walking Frankie to the dog park, pulling weeds/gardening, cleaning my house from top to bottom, dusting off my yoga mat, or doing one of CeCe Olisa’s #PSPFit Videos… I like to do something. It tends to get my mind off of the issue at hand, and gives me an added sense of accomplishment, which is actually really nice. An ego boost shouldn’t be considered a bad thing, okay?
So there you have it – my secrets to conquering those pesky BBDs that leak into my regularly scheduled lifetime program from time to time. Enough about my secrets – tell me about yours! I would love to hear about ways that you combat a “Bad Body Day!” By sharing yours, maybe you’ll help a fellow reader (and me!) as we all get through those icky negative feelings together.