Last month for my monthly mindscape I shared a story about my favourite birthday. This month I’m going back to the original format, picking an image found on Instagram and writing a short piece of fiction with this as the prompt.
This is my play-time on the blog. I get to explore topics in a more creative way and generally have a bit of fun flexing my fiction-writing muscles.
This month, I found a picture and caption by Lucy Lucraft which I loved. I loved the honesty in both and it made me think of how complicated our relationship can be with our bodies, and how complicated my relationship with my body is right now… so I’m using that as a jumping off point today.
OK, that’s enough preamble, let’s get to the story, shall we?
Looking down at her inner thighs, she thought about how different things looked now. The thin purple lines wiggled this way and that. Those weren’t always there. On the underside of her breasts, new lines appeared again.
As she made peace with her body, it transformed. She’d turned her back on diet culture and welcomed intuitive eating into her life. Because of this her mind felt incredible.
She was free of the guilt, free of the self-hatred that once consumed every second. And yet, her body continued to throw her curve-balls. The second she accepted the way it looked and felt, it changed again. It grew, shifted, developed new lines.
Clothes she once loved now became tight, uncomfortable, like a prison. Throwing them into a bag, she readied another load to take to the charity shop and wondered when she would have the money to replace them. She reached for the same outfits again and again, knowing which ones would provide the comfort she needed.
Studying the lines on her skin, she told herself all the right things. She knew it was OK to have lines, she knew it was OK for her body to change… and yet. Knowing isn’t always the same as feeling.
Sighing to herself, she mused on the fact that unlearning the rules society continuously rammed down her throat was hard.
The lies it fed her were bitter but moreish.
Her automatic reaction was to spit them out in anger, but now and then she hungered for them.
But then she remembers what life was like when she swallowed. What life was like when the rules controlled her. The pleasure, joy and flavour they took away from life and how long it’s taken for things to change.
With this in mind, she looks back at her lines and sees them in a new light. They represent growth, both physical and emotional. They show how far she’s come. Each one reads like a map, showing how her love for food, for life, for equality has shaped her.
With that thought lovingly placed in her mind, she smiled, pulled on her favourite jeans and black vest, ready to face the next challenge.
As with a lot of these pieces of fiction, this one isn’t really fiction. It’s how I’m feeling about my body at the moment and the new stretch marks I’m discovering. Sometimes putting our thoughts into a story like this helps us process them and make peace with them.
I would love to hear if this piece resonated with you at all, do let me know in the comments or head over to Instagram. I’ll be back next week with a podcast with some tips on reaching out if you’re struggling with your mental health and a blog about separating your worth from your productivity. Until then, take care.
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