Wednesday, August 5, 2015

the last lesson: talkin' bodies

Tonight will be my last time at Young Women's.  It is better this way, because if I just got released and didn't have the ultimate joy to distract me, I'd be an absolute wreck.  Girls' camp this year was last week.  The theme was "Embark."  We talked of anchors.  About anchoring yourself in the gospel.  These girls were my anchor in the roughest storm of my life.  I wouldn't have made it had it not been for my calling.  There were weeks where my only good day was Wednesday because I had their hugs and smiling faces to distract me.  And for months, they were the only reason I even went to church.  They were my saving grace. I wrote each of them letters, but I don't think I can ever adequately express my love for them.  These dang girls have stolen my heart and I will miss them all so much. They have taught me more than I could ever possibly teach them.  They make me a better person. They make me stop and think about my language, about the music I listen to, about what I watch and read.  Aren't all of these things the things I'm supposed to teach them?  They make me want to be better for them.

The last day of camp we went swimming at a lake, and I almost didn't go.  I was tired, I had a ton to do, but these were just excuses because I was worried about my body.  I've put on [baby] weight, I have adult bacne, I have cellulite, my legs are pasty white.  I'm not like my friends who do crossfit and marathons and have rockin' golden brown bodies. I want my girls to look up to me and to admire me.  That's the thought that got me.  I thought about how I want them to admire me not for my body and beauty, but my confidence in the body that Heavenly Father gave me.  I'm basically a grown teenager.  They all have different body shapes.  Some are closer to the ideal that society has set, some are less, but they are all beautiful to me.  And bacne, well, they're just starting with that so they like totally get it.  But zits or not, I want them to be confident in their bodies. I'd be devastated if some of them went home early because they were embarrassed.  So, at 31, I silenced my embarrassment about my own awkward body, put on my suit and got my beach on.  I swam, I laid out with them, and I didn't think twice about it.  My body is great.  It works.  I enjoyed the feel of floating, of my hair swirling around me, of the clay in between my toes, the feel of the sun on my back.  Of my body doing its thing.

Everyone has issues with their body.  My YW's president, a runner who falls into the category I mentioned above, lamented because she doesn't have boobs.  We all have different bodies and only one is good enough for society, but for Heavenly Father, they are all His masterpieces.

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