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What I Think About Your Body

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As a female on this planet, I am more than aware of my body. My physical presence has brought me many outfit changes, unseemly anti-wrinkle creams, and disappointments. I have spent an unhealthy amount of money on diet foods and morphed myself into what I was told others would like in too many cliché ways all to come to the conclusion that no one else was thinking about my body as much as I was.

It's a strange state of affairs when the driving force of unhealthy thoughts gets knocked down. Your body seems to do this weird thing where, despite what your brain knows, it continues to act in the way it was trained to. Long ago, I realized the shape of my body wouldn't determine my worth. I saw the Dove commercials, I heard the female empowerment messages and felt empowered, and I actively stopped judging others on the size of their jeans. Yet, I still can't help but feel my mood drop in the dressing room and I still look to my thighs to tell me why I am liked or disliked.

The thing is, I don't know what makes me so special. I don't know why what I've chosen to believe for others doesn't apply to myself. And, when I say I don't know why, the answer actually isn't a why. The answer is that I am not. What I think about your body is what I should think about my own and what other people think about bodies, in general, isn't different when they look at me.

What I think about your body is I don't. When I walk down the street and I pass a couple of strangers, I don't notice the two pounds they lost nor do I see a size 6. When I am rushing to an appointment, I might not even notice the people I pass at all. When I get my vanilla misto at the counter at Starbucks, at best, I'll notice the smile or lack there of on the face of the barista serving me and at worst, I won't notice them at all. When I see a person wearing an outlandish outfit, I might notice them then, but I still am not thinking about their body. And I'm willing to bet the same is true in reverse.

The thing is, we are selfish creatures, us humans. Most of the time, when I'm looking at your body, I'm thinking of myself -- of what I need to do, of where I'm going or who I'm meeting, or of my own body. But I'd like to change the moments I think about my body. I'd like to pass by a reflective surface and regard myself the way I regard others: without much regard. In doing so, I have to remember I'm no different. I'm not that special. My body is just a body and it doesn't have to carry my worth.