Welcome to the May 2013 Authentic Parenting Blog Carnival: Self Love
This post was written for inclusion in the monthly Authentic Parenting Blog Carnival hosted by Authentic Parenting and Living Peacefully with Children. This month our participants have written about their thoughts concerning self-love. We hope you enjoy this month’s posts and consider joining us next month when we share about Babywearing.
You know what scares me the most right now? Being a mother to a daughter. It’s not that I wouldn’t be scared raising a son, but due to all the double standards in our society today, I believe that young girls face a myriad of challenges that boys will rarely see on their radar.
We are a weight obsessed, perfection obsessed culture. I admit, I come down pretty hard on myself at times for not being “Hollywood” perfect. It is a lot easier for me to see my physical “flaws” than it is to see beauty. And while I attempt to shield Tiny from this, she is aware that sometimes mama just doesn’t like what she sees in the mirror.
This disgusts me! Tiny is 4. She should not even be aware of body image. While she has no issue with her own body, she definitely knows I have an issue with mine. So what does this mean for her in a few years?
I don’t diet. In fact, I have a hearty appetite. You won’t find me missing a meal. I eat real foods, lots of fat, and tons or fresh, local ingredients. I cooked nearly everything we eat in my own kitchen from scratch. Tiny has a very balanced view of food and its function. For this I am grateful. But it does not negate the fact that she will soon be bombarded with our culture’s expectation of the female form.
Most of my female friends are pretty blessed with a height/weight proportionate thing going on. Good for them. But in a way, this concerns me because it is not an accurate portrayal of the human population. So of course I worry that Tiny is getting some sort of warped view on who we choose to be friends with when it has nothing at all to do with size. (Crazy thoughts but hey – I think them!)
I really am at a loss about raising a daughter. Truly, I am. I try my best to help her see the beauty of the WHOLE person and not physical beauty. But the push towards physical beauty as justification of who you are and who you will become surrounds Tiny despite my best efforts. I mean, we can’t go anywhere without someone telling her how beautiful she is or how cute her dress is. RastaDaddy constantly focuses his compliments on physical aspects. Uggg..what is a mama who wants her daughter to rebel against what our culture has done to women supposed to do?
I’ll tell you. This mama needs to get her head out of her ass, appreciate who she is and not what she looks like, and model this Every. Single. Minute. For. Tiny. Period. No ifs, no ands, no buts. I need to show her that life is incredible and anything is possible because of WHO you are and not what you look like. I need to instill in her the desire to fight back against this disgusting engine of repression, oversexualization, and degradation of women. I need to show Tiny that it is possible for our world to change the majoritive view on the importance of physical appearances.
No small task right? So what would you do? Where would you start?
I’ll check back in and let you know how this all goes. Or maybe I’ll just say “to heck with it” and give her a pile of Barbies to play with. (Just kidding. Just kidding).
Please take time to read the submissions by the other carnival participants:
(This list will be live and updated by afternoon June 1 with all the carnival links.)
- Mothering Myself- Mandy at Living Peacefully with Children discusses how her children have been a catalyst for treating herself better.
- The Habit of Intentional Rest - Jennifer Hoffman, of Every Breath I Take, shares how she “puts her own oxygen mask on first” with her habit of intentional rest.
- Replenishing by Connecting – Gwynn Raimondi found the way to self care through connection to those who matter most: herself, her husband, her daughter.
- Overcoming Body Image For The Sake Of Our Children – Jennifer at Hybrid Rasta Mama takes a hard look at how her own body image can positively or negatively affect her daughter and why that scares her more than anything!
- I Resented my Pregnant Body – Mercedes at Project Procrastinot blogs about body image and the pettiness she felt when she couldn’t accept the physical changes of pregnancy.
- Staying Sane & Taking Care of Myself – Jana Falls at Jananas discusses how she, as an introvert mama, has made time to take care of herself.
- Depression and Self-Image – At Authentic Parenting, Laura confesses how much her recent depression has distorted her self-image and how she struggles to overcome this.
- mummy loves … – Helen at Zen Mummy shares a post about re-finding the person behind the mummy.
- Can my inner critics stop me from participating in a self-love blog carnival?- Tat from Mum in search almost didn’t get to write for this carnival. Until she stopped to ask herself why she was pulling out.