With the All Females Classic bodybuilding titles on this past weekend, I remembered my own experience as a competitor. Although I never competed in this event (wearing a bikini in Melbourne in June — no way!) I stood on stage two years in a row in the best shape of my life.
Although there were trials and tribulations before and after competing, in that moment, standing on stage, I felt beautiful and proud of my efforts.
It’s been three years since I was obsessed with food, exercise and my body and I’m sure people wonder if I miss the thrill of being lean enough to parade my body in a small bikini. The answer is no.
I have come to realise that I’m still the same person.
When I look at the photos from that time, I can’t see much difference. Of course I’m carrying more fat, I’m a bigger size and my ribs aren’t visible, but I am still that person in the photo. I have the same smile, the same fighting spirit and the same ability to do anything I set my mind to.
The people who knew me then and know me now don’t turn away from me because I’m no longer competition lean. The size of my body is of no interest to them at all. All they want to know is that I’m happy.
I am happy.
I’m loving my life, loving my friends and family and letting go of the thoughts that make me suffer.
If you’ve ever been beautiful in the past — you are beautiful now. The essence of you doesn’t change depending on the size, shape or age of your body. That spark inside you, that sliver of divinity, always remains.
Who you are as a person is important to the world. You are the only person who can do the job of being you. Everything about you is exactly the way it needs to be for you to fulfil your purpose on this earth.
Don’t long for a past when things were different. At your core, you are still the same … perhaps wiser, kinder, more joyful and more interesting.
When you believe that your personality, your spirit and your capacity to love are the most important things, then your body is as irrelevant as the changing weather.
Life goes by quickly. Looking backwards with wistful longing robs you of happiness. You are more beautiful, more capable and more loved than you were when you were thinner, younger, or richer.
You are loved because you are simply you.
“If your self-esteem really does depend on how you look, you’re always going to be insecure. There’s no way you can get around it. Even if you get the perfect body, you’re going to age. At some point, you have to take control, shift the focus, and decide that who you are, what you can contribute to the world, what you do and say, is so much more important than how you look.”
– Portia de Rossi