Bent over in downward dog, my eyes can’t help but stare at the hairy patches on my legs where I missed shaving and the chipped toenail polish. My shadow displayed a silhouette of frizzy hair crowning my head and my knees cracked and popped with each movement. That was nothing unusual and surely this group of people doing yoga at the Whitewater Center don’t care about that anyways. But then I suddenly realized that my pants were on inside out and backward. The tag was waving in the air like the flag on the 4th of July! And is that a tiny hole?! Not to mention, my nose scrunched up each time we had to look under our armpits. I was a stinky, hairy, unkempt mess!
Yet for the first time in years, I LOVED ME! There is nothing wrong with being pale and hairy…I was born that way! I am allowed to stink and have frizzy hair…I am a human being! Human beings have physical bodies. These physical bodies don’t need to be perfectly groomed…that is just societal pressures. And yes, my body was growing older. It creaks and whines, aches, and everything becomes exaggerated. The dark circles under my eyes, wrinkles, cellulite, age spots, veins, and gray hair are physical attributes of age. Just because my body doesn’t look or feel as good as it did 20 years ago, doesn’t mean it is any less me. In fact, it is more me.
Haven’t you noticed that the way your recognize a person, the things that make them unique, are their “imperfections”? The thing you treasure in your loved ones are your niece’s crooked teeth, your dad’s potbelly, or your grandma’s neck waddle. All the quirks of the body of a loved one fill me with deep affection for them, as I imagine they do for you too. So why not show that same affection to those unique parts of ourselves?
We are all beautiful messes, just like we were created to be!