Here in Canada, we’re at the height of summer, with people stripping down to as little clothing as they can get away with and soaking up these fleeting moments of sun before the cool weather returns. (Too soon, in my opinion.)
But for a huge swath of women, these moments of liberation from the tyranny of cloth feel like the exact opposite, all because they’re not comfortable with their bodies. Thanks to people like Sonia Tremblay, however, that could be changing.
Sonia, profiled in HuffPost Quebec in an as-told-to piece by Céline Gobert, is part of the body positive movement that focuses on loving yourself regardless of whether you look like the people on the covers of magazines and in TV shows. And the article just so happened to come out at the same time Mindy Kaling was encouraging women of all sizes to don their bikinis, and fashion bloggers in France said “enough!” to comments about sizes when they post bathing suit pics.
As they say, there’s no such thing as coincidences.
For Céline, it was a revelation to find a woman advocating so loudly for this kind of inclusion in Quebec.
“It’s wonderful to see women feeling better about themselves and being happy exactly the way they are — and then to understand that diversity is a strength,” she notes.
And just as Sonia has heard from her fans that they are wearing T-shirts for the first time thanks to her messages of acceptance, readers also voiced their glee at seeing themselves reflected in the piece.
“There were so many comments on social media about this, and the general feeling was very positive,” Céline says. “I think the piece will have an important impact on the women who have these thoughts every day, and that’s all that matters.”
Like most women, I’ve dealt with my own body issues — I wouldn’t wear shorts or skirts from age 14 to 24 because of my embarrassment about my thighs, for example. And that was well before social media, and its emphasis on a very specific type of picture-perfect look, even existed.
It’s so heartening to see women like Sonia reminding girls and women that there’s no one way to appear in the world, and in fact, society is greatly improved when people feel good about the way they look, instead of ashamed. The smile I get on my face when I see the row of dresses that I now have in my closet is a testament to that.
Speak to you next week,
Follow HuffPost Quebec (@HuffPostQuebec) for diverse stories about people of all kinds.
I can honestly say I never thought I’d be so engrossed by an essay about labiaplasty, a topic I knew very little about before reading it, but this intimate piece does an incredible job making it relatable to anyone who’s questioned what any part of their body looks or feels like. Undergoing plastic surgery for any reason is so personal, but Allison Penner manages to make it universal.
Dance reality shows during the summer are my weakness (hello, “So You Think You Can Dance,” Season 16!), so I’ve become almost immune to the long, lean and often impossibly thin bodies that are the norm for dancers. But where does that leave someone who loves to dance, but whose body doesn’t fit the type? For Lynn Bessoudo, it meant getting away from traditional spaces like ballet, and widening her world.
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