by Stephanie Pletka
Growing up, I was quiet the active child; I was an expert tree climber, a running, tumbling, flipping, cartwheel-ing, energetic girl. You might even say I had ADHD on top of my ADHD.
Oh look, a quarter!
Ok, I digress.
My poor parents.
I was so skinny, I acquired the nickname Bird Legs in 5th grade. I couldn’t gain weight to save myself. My mom even took me to the doctor for a check-up to see if I had worms. That was fun.
I ran to the bus stop, rolled through the house with folded laundry, from one end to the other, I was non-stop. You never knew how I would enter or exit a room, but I was quick.
Fast forward 20 years and I can gain weight smelling a Snicker bar and THEN I had my first child. What happened to this body? The one that could loose 5 lbs just by skipping lunch?
So one day, a few weeks after having my first child, our cable tv remote went kaput and needed to be exchanged. I hopped in the car, grabbing diapers, strollers, as if I were moving, and away we drove to the cable store.
I arrived early, something that hasn’t happened since, and hung out a few minutes, waiting for the doors to open.
And that’s when I saw myself in the Largest Mirror known to man. It was an executive building made of all reflective glass.
I looked at myself, while pushing the stroller, gave a critical glance at who I had become, then thought, if only I were as fat as the last time I thought I was fat. I wonder what my butt looks like. You know what I’m talking about.
So I turned around, to make sure no one was looking, gave myself a quick glance with a few looks of disgust, a couple of eye rolls, then looked again to assure my eyes hadn’t deceived me. At that moment, an executive quickly rushed through the front door in a hurried, yet giggling sort of way and said:
Ma’am, we’re having a meeting inside this building and 10 people have been watching you look at yourself for a couple of minutes.
Oh! My! Gosh!
And if that weren’t bad enough, I could hear a roar of laughter inside, as they viewed my reaction!
I was horrified! Was it not enough that I’m judging myself for the body I’ve become and now humiliated by a group of executives that I’ve entertained in a corporate meeting?
I surely burned calories pushing the stroller to the car in record time. It was a lesson learned that day: Not to be so hard on myself.
You can’t have a baby and look the same. You can’t have the jaws of life un-hinge and look like your old high school self. You’re not going to be in a car accident and come out pristine. Life happens. The processes you’ve been through, make you better, stronger, tougher.
Yes, there are days I wished I had appreciated all the times I was younger, got more sleep, had more energy, wishing I was as fat as the last time I thought I was fat.
But it’s important to give yourself grace, unmerited favor. It’s not what you deserve, rather a gift. Love who you are at whatever size, fitness or energy level.
Romans 6:14 says For sin shall no longer be your master; you are no longer under the law, but under grace.
Give yourself time to make a comeback. Whatever goal this may be for you, love yourself during the tough times; being a true friend to You.
This will also prove to be a great example to your children as well, allowing yourself grace, a little slack.
So the next time you see the world’s largest mirror, just smile and keep walking. Grace girl, grace! Is there something in your life that a little grace wouldn’t hurt?
Here’s to living the best version of you!
My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.”Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ’s power may rest on me. 2 Corinthians 12:9