I love the beach! I love the ocean! I love the sunshine on my skin… but damn I hate the way I look in a bathing suit!
No matter how much people tell you that you really don’t look as fat as you think you are: you can’t help but think that they’re just being nice!
Mirrors don’t lie and they have a funny way of becoming your biggest enemies!
Examining myself in the mirror, I understood how Snow White must’ve felt when she looked in the mirror! No wonder she ran off to live with dwarves! The contrast between dark hair and milky skin is not attractive! And no matter how much you tell yourself that other people are also walking around with fair skins during this time of the year, you still enter the beach feeling as if you’re the only one that looks like they’ve just arrived from Alaska!
The tedious job of depilation results in the following thoughts going through your mind:
You always miss a spot!
You look even whiter than before and
Where did all that damn hair come from?
Alright, you’ve dug out your towel and your sunscreen, managed to break away from the mirror without despairing and you’ve just about psyched yourself up to go when your friend informs you that more people will be joining you to go the beach.
Do you realise what this means!
That means that a couple of perfectly nice people are going to be traumatized after seeing all those flaws that you’ve kept hidden under your clothing! You try to cover up a sob as you realise that it’s too late to back out and amuse yourself with stupid jokes like:
“Whales belong in the ocean so you might as well go anyway”.
Arriving, you take a look around to see if you can spot a familiar face, and you silently pray that everyone you know is somewhere else.
Taking off your clothes is the hardest part… it feels like everyone is just waiting for you to expose what is underneath, especially all those good looking tanned guys looking your way. Taking a deep breath and silently swearing, you remove your top while sucking in your stomach and wonder why on earth you decided to go to the beach in the first place!
Once the skirt is off you jump onto your towel and grab the suntan lotion promising that today is the day on which pigmentation becomes a word in your vocabulary once more!
You almost begin to relax until you see your reflection on your buddy’s sunglasses and tell yourself that you’ll be doing yourself and the whole beach a favour by not getting up from your towel… ever!
What is the worst thing that can happen when you’re at the beach and feeling self conscious? It’s very close to seeing that ex, or that colleague with the great body: in my buddy’s own words: “If he ever had an idea of being with me, he probably doesn’t feel that way now!”. That’s right! Those people who at any point were interested in you but hadn’t seen you in your bikini are those you less want to see on the beach. Even if you’re not interested in them, you’re left with this awful feeling as if you’ve disappointed them by not looking like Barbie Swimwear.
A bucket of cold water never hurt anybody…
In this case… try a whole ocean full! Climbing into the ocean, the freezing water somehow was exactly what the doctor ordered to cool down all my thoughts. Enveloped by waves, I felt embraced and loved by my favourite of nature’s elements. Respecting its mighty power, I allowed myself to feel humbled and free. Why in the hell hadn’t I come to beach sooner!!!
There’s something about the way you feel when you step out the water. No matter how embarrassed you may feel, you always feel a whole lot more confident coming out than when you went in. Playing around in the showers with my friends, I’d forgotten about the reasons that had led me to feel so self conscious and from that moment until the time we left I enjoyed every second on the beach.
Life only becomes fun when you stop worrying about what other people see and instead worry more about your own perspective. After taking a shower, I was bummed that there was practically no difference between the white on my ass and the white on my legs. I then noticed my butterfly on my ankle and decided that it belong to a pretty shapely leg. Taking a second look in the mirror, I admitted that I didn’t look as bad as I’d first assessed that morning and promised to give myself such a hard time the next time I went to the beach. The critics I fear so much are those that criticise others in order to sway attention from themselves and all the others don’t bother noticing the things I worry about because they’re probably too self conscious themselves. My only wish is that people worried as much about their souls as they do of their appearances.