December is always a really interesting month for me. Something about holidays, parties, lots of socializing – it’s sometimes, a little overwhelming. I share this not because I don’t enjoy many aspects of the holidays – but because I think it’s a great time of year to think about intentions for the next, and about how, during the time of year we all seem to be most likely to dote on others in our lives, to take a minute and do something exceptionally kind for ourselves. Moving into January – the resolutions! The fixes! The make-yourself-better plans. Sometimes, it all just feels like too much.
Working in lingerie has a strange way of getting under my skin sometimes. I work with clients of all ages and sizes, and abilities, and backgrounds – and I’m amazed by the depth of experience of the people who walk through our doors. I get to spend my days working with exceptionally interesting people – which is a huge gift, but sometimes, the things women say about themselves in a fitting room amazes me.
I’m sadly amazed at how easy it seems to be for people to speak about themselves in a way that is unkind and un-loving – and how easy it is for me to put myself down. We hear common complaints about how bodies have changed over time, about back fat and belly rolls, about wrinkles and dimples and sagging and weight gain. It’s almost more common for me to hear that “I hate the way I look” or “I’m sorry my body is this way” – and sometimes (read: often), I want to just say “stop.”
You don’t have to apologize about your body here. I (and the women who work here) don’t care that you’re not the size you were when you were 18. We’re not bothered by sagging skin, or rolls, or cellulite. We’re here to help you find a bra that fits your body and your life – and it is our deepest hope that by doing so you can change that negative narrative. Say that you love that your soft belly carried your babies. Say that you’re so glad to have lived and laughed and loved through your lifetime. Tell us that you’re wiser now, and happier, than you were as a teen. Give us, as young women, the hope and knowledge that life doesn’t end after 40, 50, even 70 – and that it’s ok that bodies change.
So here’s what I’m really asking. Be your own friend. Be your bodies friend – be kind, loving to yourself. And please: never, ever feel like you have to apologize to your bra fitter about your body or the way you look. I’m not asking for a resolution to love yourself 24/7/365 – just for the space to say as many nice things about yourself as you feel you can, as often as you can. Join us in complimenting yourself – we’re aiming to fill a wall behind each location’s cash register with self-compliments, because even just one nice thing, one compliment, can start a change – and that’s a resolution I can get behind. It’s easy to think that body positivity has to be an all-or-nothing situation – but it’s not. Like so much of life, there’s a lot of in-between spaces, which makes me feel so much better. I can handle giving myself compliments sometimes, without the pressure to love every gray hair and wrinkle all the time – and I hope you can too.