I have decided to love my belly. Love is a decision. I know I wasn’t born criticizing my belly. In fact, I bet I loved it. I bet I found pleasure in the kisses my mother would give it, or the tender rubbing it would receive when I was given a bath. When I was a toddler I don’t believe I spent much time thinking about it.
The first time I remember thinking my stomach was too big was somewhere between 10-12 years old. I was with my mother, father, sister and grandmother in our living room watching home movies on our big screen. The lights were out. We all got comfy and began watching the footage from our recent trip to the Santa Cruz Board Walk. In the footage, I was standing next to my little sister who was 8 years younger than me. I was wearing shorts and a midriff top, and I was squinting into the sun while eating an ice cream cone. I remember seeing my belly protruding from my body and feeling disgusted with myself. I don’t remember if anyone in the family mentioned my body. All I can remember is feeling embarrassed and not wanting to look at myself. For many years up until adulthood, I carried judgement about the middle part of my body.
Today, I decide to love my body. It is a choice.
You also have a choice. You can decide to focus on what you think is wrong with your body, or you can decide to tell your body how grateful you are for it.
I don’t always feel the emotion of love for my belly, but that doesn’t matter because although love can be an emotion, it can also be an action.
I take loving action each time I rub my belly and tell it, “I love you.” I take loving action each time I thank it for digesting my food or extracting the nutrients I need for a healthy body and life.
I have decided to love it in spite of its ever-changing shape and size throughout my lifetime.
My belly deserves love and respect. It has played an integral part in my ability to enter this world through the umbilical cord that provided me with all the nutrients I needed while I was being created. While I was creating my book, Self-Love Diet: The Only Diet That Works, my belly became an integral part of that creation as well. Take a look at the belly button on the front cover of my book. Can you guess who it belongs to? 🙂
Blessings on your self-love and body love journey,
Registration for Reclaiming Your Purpose is open! The Self-Love Diet online book study begins September 1st. Register Now. | May’s self-love writing prompt is Body Gratitude. You can share your self-love journey with the Love Warrior Community by submitting your self-love posts to be published here on Self-Love Warrior, or you can share them on the Self-Love Diet Facebook page.
Michelle Minero, the Co-Founder of this blog and the overarching Love Warrior Community published her book, Self-Love Diet: The Only Diet That Works. You can buy her book online or at stores in Petaluma, Sonoma and Healdsburg, California. You can also purchase a copy Michelle’s book through Amazon. For upcoming events and book signings, visit Michelle’s Events page.
Michelle Minero is a licensed marriage family therapist who specializes in eating disorder recovery. Her dream is to see a world filled with people who love themselves and their bodies.
Michelle created an intensive outpatient eating disorder program in 2000, brought ANAD (Anorexia Nervosa and Associated Disorders, Inc.) to Petaluma shortly after and founded EDRS (Eating Disorder Recovery Support, Inc.), a Marin and Sonoma County based 501(c)3 non-profit organization in 2005. In 2011, Michelle co-founded the Love Warrior Community with her daughter, Emelina, an online community that helps people cultivate self-love, self-acceptance and body acceptance through creative expression. Connect with Michelle on Facebook and Twitter.