Have you ever felt society or people slightly tugging on your self-love, confidence, and beauty? Me too. Just like many other people, I have cringed at the sight of my stomach roll when I sit down and wondered why I was never a guy's first choice. I have persevered through my journey of life so far and couldn’t love myself more for it.
Growing up, I was always busy with sports, activities, and grades that I never got into the dating scene. My parents would joke with me that I couldn’t have a boyfriend until I was 18. Hahaha Two years have passed since then and I still don’t have one. I was never asked to homecoming, prom, or to go on an official date; confused as to why I seemed to always be over-looked.
After graduating high school, I parted ways with my friends and family, moving over 1,600 miles away to pursue my dream of continuing my education and entering my career field in the Sunshine State (where I was originally born). I was super pumped to be a guppy in a huge fish pond again-as they call being a freshman. But, just like high school, it was the same way. I was so active (and was in really great shape), especially for my freshman year of college. I only felt noticed by guys when I dressed nice and took too long doing my make-up. It got old.
I spent a lot of time third wheeling with my best friends and their boyfriends (who I was also good friends with) only to feel lonelier and less beautiful by the time we got back in the car to drive back to campus. I was bribed with pizza to 5th wheel one time, of course I did it but didn’t stay long. Haha yay to free food!
After giving into third wheeling for a year and half, I pulled the last straw my sophomore year. All my friends and best friends were in relationships, I had no one to confide in that would understand how I felt and I broke down. My Mom listened to me cry as I laid on the floor of the living room in my apartment. "Why couldn’t I have a boyfriend? Why were guys seeming to just over-look me? Am I really not that pretty compared to the other girls? Why do I look fat when I put on the cute dress that looked amazing on me last year? Or when I get to know a guy and think I have a chance, then they run and ghost me?"
She comforted me as best as she could over the phone with some motivating words. She reminded me how beautiful and strong I am and how one day I will have an amazing guy I can give the world to, but that I needed to focus on myself first. She was right.
I did just that.
Over the past year I have had confidence in my body, loved myself more than ever, and have taken care of myself- in bursts. When I see an inch of fat at the bottom of my stomach, flowing over the top of my swimsuit bottoms and say how I feel, my best friends deny it and remind me of how beautiful I am. That's just what I need to hear to prioritize loving myself and my bod. I feel confident and beautiful.
We don’t need to fit a certain image that society or other people want us to. We are all perfect and beautiful in our own way, whether someone notices us or not. You shouldn’t wait around for people or a significant other to fill a void. We need to fill ourselves up first. Sometimes we may not feel beautiful because of society, what people say, or negative thoughts, but we need to let it go through one ear and out another. It feels revolutionary and certainly makes it so much easier to love and serve others when you know you have loved and served yourself first. I promise.
I am Josephine Rodgers.
I am a Brave Babe. I love and accept myself.