The Black Bikini- A Post About Body ImageI stopped wearing bikinis at the age of 17 when my first child was born. I was not one of those women who didn’t get stretch marks, and I no longer felt confident wearing one. I’d choose tankinis and one pieces, and hope to look more cute than motherly, but I never felt young at the beach after that. 

Before kids, I’d always been the pretty one. My whole life I grew up getting attention for my looks. And I’ll never forget the moment I was sitting on a beach with my two daughters, and I heard the guys next to me say, “Wow! There aren’t any attractive girls on this beach!” 

My heart sank. I was only 19 and already washed up

But through time I realized that I got to choose how I looked. I didn’t have to be washed up if I didn’t want to. And as I became more and more alive, I grew more and more confident. I got into shape, lost weight, and learned how to be stylish. And I no longer feel “washed up”. In fact, I feel more attractive than I’ve ever been. 

So this year when it was time to buy a swimsuit, I bought a black bikini. 

I was nervous about it, as I know my stomach still bears the aftermath of 4 children, and I haven’t been shy about wanting a tummy tuck, but I also know that wearing a “mom” suit makes me feel old and frumpy. 

I don’t like feeling that way. 

I’ve been slowly breaking myself in. First, I took off my cover up at the pool to catch some sun while the kids swam. I was completely aware of my body the whole time. I’m not used to being so naked. When Dan showed up, I put the cover up back on, because I felt stupid. 

But I’ve been getting more and more brave as we go to the pool more often, and this past week, I wore my bikini to the beach. I thought I’d lay out in it, because I knew I could position myself favorably while lying down, but when it came time to play paddle ball, I’d put my cover up back on. However when I was at the beach, after a few minutes with it off, I decided keeping the cover up on was worse than wearing a mom suit, so I braved paddle ball with it off. 

But every time Dan was silent, I worried he was thinking about my gross body, and I got more and more insecure. And I was ashamed at how much it mattered. 

The minute I began working from home, I felt my confidence start to wane. Not being out in the city with sexy business clothes and being treated with respect (as opposed to like a servant to my kids), has really taken it’s toll. And no matter how I’ve tried to fight it, I can’t seem to shake the insecurity.

I didn’t want to write about it because I don’t have a solution yet, but then I realized that truth doesn’t always have conclusions. Not everything I share has to be like a TV special where everyone’s problems are fixed in 30 minutes. Because it’s not about how to fix my body image, it’s about connecting with you through vulnerability. It’s about being known.

I want you to be able to look at me and see a piece of you. Not who you’re supposed to be, but who you really are.

I want you to be able to look at me and see a piece of you. Click To Tweet

I hope you LOVE your body, but if you don’t, now you know that I currently don’t either. And we can just know that about each other and connect in it.  

I really want to get my body to a place that I love, and I know what it will take to get there. I know that I’m not supposed to care. I know that the media has perpetuated an unrealistic image. But the truth about me in this moment, is that I’m insecure, and it’s affecting me.

It takes more than just a good looking body. You've got to have the heart and soul to go with it. Click To Tweet

-Tara

This is a Friday Reflections Link Up with Janine @ Reflections From a Redhead and Mackenzie @ Reflections From Me. Join the link up and share in the conversation.

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10 thoughts on “The Black Bikini”

  1. Wow! I really thought it was only me. Even though I am not working from home, I’m at home 99% of my time since surgery and sincerely, I haven’t been the same.
    Do you believe that I have been wearing hoodies despite being summer?
    Only recently I realized how I have been treating myself. I don’t have the answer either. I hope we find it though. We deserve that!
    Have a beautiful day, Tara!
    #FridayReflections

    1. It’s a weird phenomenon. I can only imagine how much that feeling would increase when recovering from surgery.

  2. Awesome post. I really wanted to write about this prompt but couldn’t get the words together! I totally understand how you feel. You need to feel good about yourself all round, and it definitely helps to like the way you look – regardless of as it is or as you want it to be. As long it doesnt drive you down a path where you are striving and stressing about it, then that’s totally ok!

    1. I hear ya on over sressing. Is funny I’m actually not insecure about my body overall. It’s the bathing suit thing. Thanks for stopping by.

  3. A great post. My 30 yr old daughter and I have always complained about our midsections. Now that I windsurf and wear neoprene (wetsuits), it covers mostly everything. Body image is ridiculous in the US. Glad you did this and good for you!

    1. Aww, thanks Mackenzie. I was feeling a little worried about this post, and needed a comment like this. I am loving the link up.

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