Rain Beerhorst photo by me
When I was little, my heroes were Amelia Earhart, Annie Oakley, and Joan of Arc. I looked up to those women because I recognized something in them that I shared — and was little celebrated in the troupes of girl-dom — I was a dare-devil… (not a tom boy) — I would jump off the garage roof, practice “tightrope walking” on chain link fences, and climb trees etc… I did all of that wearing dresses and seed bead chokers. I had a bow & arrow, BB gun, and an amazing dress-up box.
I have to remind myself sometimes, how truly awesome I was from the age of 7-11 because like so many girls puberty hit me like a brick of self loathing. I got hairy, REALLY hairy, my skin broke out every day, I realized that I was done growing at 5ft. 2in., not to mention the heavy 6 day periods!
In the space of one year all that, was suddenly a part of my life — and I was scared shitless. So like most girls, I ran to the likes of 17Teen magazine and Cosmo Girl. From them I learned; to cover my acne with tons of makeup, what clothes lengthen “shorties”, and how I should be shaving, waxing, bleaching etc.
Art by Happy2Bsad
Magazines taught me that entering womanhood was the start of a never-ending quest for physical perfection — that my body was created broken and needed to be fixed.
When I was about 16 and had just been dumped by my 2 best friends, it was a dark time in my life. I was lonely, sad and felt like crap, in my desperation to feel ok again I started searching for natural mood-boosters. I learned that eating healthy and running almost everyday made me feel amazing. I relearned to appreciate what my body could do, rather than basing its entire worth on how it looked.
I am hairy, short, acne scarred & healthy, strong, happy, beautiful.
Women’s bodies have turned into a battle-ground this election year, and the Republican party has said some pretty dumb shit and it’s really easy to get mad about!
If we want this sort of reprehensible thought to stop, we need make sure that we start with ourselves. We can so often be guilty of waging war on our own bodies, hating them, disconnecting from them, abusing them.
I want you to practice radical self love, make peace with your body, it is truly capable of GREAT things!
Photo by K/R/R
“Never underestimate the huge middle finger you are giving to the world when you make peace with your body.”
– Frances Lockie