This topic was totally Melissa's idea. She recently wrote a beautiful post about body image on my blog, where she talked about the top 5 things she loves about her body. I think that having a positive body image is so important, but it can also be pretty difficult when you're working in NYC and bumping into gorgeous supermodels on occasion. So it helps to focus on the parts of myself that I love and that make me unique. Here's my take on body image and what I love about myself...
When I was little, my grandmother used to tell me an old wives' tale about how eating bread crust would make your hair really curly. So I spent years eating crustless sandwiches and using straightening irons in hopes that I'd just wake up with naturally straight hair one day. I didn't. But I've definitely learned to appreciate my Taylor Swift curls now as an adult.
As useful as the transportation system is in New York, I find myself having to do a LOT of walking to get to and from the train station every day for work. And with all that exercise comes a workout that can rival even the most strenuous treadmill jogging session at the gym. My legs are very muscular and shapely as a result, and I love highlighting them in skirts and leggings. I'm proud of my athletic legs because they bear the signs of a long commute and a healthy body.
As a kid, I always envied my friends who wore braces and were allowed to pick different-color rubber bands to decorate them every month. Now that I'm an adult, I realize how fortunate I was that I never needed to wear braces or to feel the pain of getting them tightened all the time. My teeth are perfectly straight and won't be needing any work done anytime soon.
Hips and thighs
I used to think that my ample hips and backside made me fat, but I'm far from overweight. I now see them for what they really are: A sign of femininity and an expression of my Latina roots. I'm tall and pale, so most people are shocked when I mention that I'm 100% Hispanic. I may act like a Taylor Swift, but my shape definitely leans more toward a J.Lo. And I'm cool with that.
This one hasn't always been easy for me to love or even accept. I was born without my left arm just below the elbow and often wear a prosthetic to cover it up. I used to think my limb difference made me undesirable or unattractive to the opposite sex. But I realized how wrong I was and now see my small arm as capable and strong. I see it as something unique that only adds to my character. It doesn't define me, but it doesn't detract from who I am, either.
So there you have it -- 5 things about me that have really taught me to love and believe in myself. I hope this post inspires you to look for all the positive things you should celebrate about yourself because, trust me, there are many. You can read my blog and follow me on Facebook, Twitter and Pinterest.
--By Caitlin from Stream of Caitlinness