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Still Feeling Marvelous

For a solid week before my vacation to Barbados, I was struggling in the self-love department big time.

I had “critical eyes”, as I like to call them, every time I looked in the mirror.

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I couldn’t look at my reflection in the mirror without picking myself apart in some way or another.

I would go to the gym and compare my body to the other women working out, I would hide from the mirror when getting out of the shower, and I was becoming extremely anxious about my upcoming vacation to Barbados and the thought of walking around in a bikini without something covering up my stomach, the part of my body I am most self-conscious of.

But then I got to Barbados…

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… and something amazing happened!

I suddenly felt an abundance of love for my body, I stopped looking at other women and comparing my body to theirs, I looked at myself in the mirror while exiting the shower, I touched my stomach and didn’t get uncomfortable with what I was feeling, and I walked around in public while wearing my bikini without a cover up!

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Throughout the week I was in Barbados I really surprised myself. The love and acceptance I had for my body was something I had never experienced before.

Sure, I go through times of feeling really confident then have dips and experience those days of having “critical eyes” as I mentioned to you earlier, but the love and acceptance I began to feel for myself and my body while in Barbados was truly like nothing I had ever experienced before.

During the week I relished in the new feelings I was experiencing toward my whole self. I loved me, all of me, and I absolutely loved feeling that way. It was new and it was exciting!

I was trying to understand the new feelings… why all of a sudden did I feel this way? But, I couldn’t figure out a reason. The feelings of self-love just came to me and they stayed with me the entire week.

They even got stronger as the week progressed, so strong that I was able to take this picture of my stomach while sitting in a taxi.

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I took this picture because while riding around in a taxi one morning, I glanced down and saw my stomach as shown above and when I saw it I didn’t respond how I would have usually responded…

Since my stomach area is the part of my body I am most self-conscious about, when I see or even catch the slightest glance of my stomach I usually become extremely uncomfortable, but not this time. Instead, when I saw my stomach this time I felt nothing but love for myself. I was content. I had no feelings of uncomfortableness, just pure love. And it was amazing, so I had to document this amazing moment with a picture.

When my vacation in Barbados was done and I was on the plane flying back to London, I became nervous. I was nervous because I didn’t know why I experienced such a state of self-love while in Barbados and whether or not it would continue once I got back home to Canada where I can be extremely hard on myself at times and have never experienced the amount of self-love I did while in Barbados before.

But, it’s been one week post vacation and I am proud to say that the self-love and acceptance that came to me while in Barbados has stayed with me!

I’m still trying to figure it all out. I really wanted to write a post with the hows and what I did to make it happen, but I just don’t have any answers as of yet.

So, I’m just enjoying life right now and all of the lovely feelings that are coming along with it these days.

It’s an absolutely beautiful thing to be able to stand in front of the mirror after a shower and not feel the need to hide myself under a towel.

I love going to the gym and focusing on how far I’ve come rather than the fact that my legs might not be as large as I want them to be.

I am me and I deserve to be loved just the way I am. Right now.

And I am so happy that my vacation to Barbados allowed me to achieve the self-love and acceptance I have for myself today.

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I will be linking up to Katie’s Marvelous Monday post today since I am feeling absolutely marvelous about who I am and the body I call home!

MiMM

Do you struggle with loving your whole self and feeling complete and utter happiness with the body you’ve been blessed with? If you have questions that you would like me to address in another self-love post please ask me below or feel free to email me at adashofmeg@gmail.com

Love always,

Meg xo

PS if you want to give yourself a high five for something you did over the weekend please email me at adashofmeg@gmail.com so I can feature you in this week’s High Five Friday post :D


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91 Comments

  1. Reply

    Jan @ Sprouts n Squats

    May 12, 2014

    Well done on being able to go on vacation and be able to gain that self acceptance and freedom and just be able to enjoy yourself! I went to Hawaii a bit over a year ago and I remember at the start of the trip being so stressed about getting exercise in and eating right that at first I didn’t enjoy it but I got to a point where I realized it was my holiday and I needed to just be in the moment and enjoy it without worrying about my health and fitness routine so much :)

    • Reply

      Meg

      May 18, 2014

      good for you girl! thanks for sharing :)

  2. Reply

    Brooke

    May 12, 2014

    I’m so happy for you that you are at this point and have been able to accept and love BEAUTIFUL you!!!! You have come so far and look amazing, truly. ❤️

    • Reply

      Meg

      May 18, 2014

      thank you so much my friend!

  3. Reply

    Tina Muir

    May 12, 2014

    Awwww that is so wonderful Meg! Isnt it funny how sometimes something can change our perspective of the way we look, and we can stop being so critical. It is so hard not to compare yourself against others as a woman at this time. Did you read Brooke’s article on why she would not put on a t shirt for shape? I think that proves your point here.

    You know I am a serious athlete, and very skinny…so much so that my parents have voiced concerns in the past, but compared to other elites I race against, I am bigger, and definitely eat more unhealthy foods, but it is hard when I stand on the line next to them with their full 6 packs, and every muscle is defined. But thankfully I then realize that I would rather be stronger, and live longer healthier than be lighter and damaging my body.

    Thanks for reminding me again today, to love who I am :)

    • Reply

      Meg

      May 18, 2014

      Awwwww I love this comment so much! Thank you for sharing, but no… I didn’t read Brooke’s article?

  4. Reply

    Claire

    May 12, 2014

    Can I ask why you never talk about these insecurities until well after the fact? It’s confusing because you always paint such a positive picture and preach self love, and then the folllowing week you confess that you were hiding from mirrors and hating yourself. It’s just a bit misleading to your readers. I always appreciate bloggers who are honest at all times. Hope this comment makes it through because I’m genuinely curious as to your reasoning for hiding so much. I always question these posts about loving yourself fully since you’ve posted it so many times, but then come back to say you were having weeks like this. Which we all do! But you’re becoming the Girl who cried Acceptance. Its hard to believe you.

    • Reply

      Meg

      May 12, 2014

      Well, Claire, if you ask me… I don’t think I’m hiding anything and I believe I am being quite honest and open with my readers :D

      Not one time did I say I hate myself, so I have to correct you on that, but like you said (and as I mentioned in this post)… we all go through times like this, times of not feeling 100% confident with ourselves.

      To answer your question about why I didn’t talk about this before Barbados was because I was trying to help myself in the self-love department. I reach out to people who truly know me, in person, I was meditate (which I blogged about), I did a Love Your Body Challenge (which I also blogged about), and many other things such as positive self talk and affirmations to make me feel better about me.

      I had a busy school week the week before Barbados and chose to blog about how I felt about myself today :) If you don’t believe me, you don’t have to read my blog :) But I am an honest blogger.

  5. Reply

    This is an amazing post, Meg, and I couldn’t be happier for you! My stomach is also the part of me that I most often look at with a critical eye. Why do we feel the need to “suck in” or worry about how it’s spilling over our waistband or whatever? I’m glad you’ve found such love for your WHOLE self – very inspiring!

    • Reply

      Meg

      May 18, 2014

      Thanks Megan! Always here for you too xoxo

  6. Reply

    That’s awesome, Meg! I’ve been thinking about this type of thing a lot since my honeymoon is coming up in a few weeks and I’ll be in a bikini! But I don’t want stupid thoughts about what I should or shouldn’t look like to ruin my vacation! I know Alex will think I look great no matter what, so i’m picking out a new suit and soaking up some sun, stress free :)

    • Reply

      Meg

      May 18, 2014

      that’s amazing and i was just going to say your NEW HUSBAND will just be SOOOOOO in love with you that the more confidence you show him the more he will love his new wife <3

  7. Reply

    Livi

    May 12, 2014

    It is so great to hear this! I think loving our bodies is one of the hardest struggles women have in the modern world. You are doing a great job of changing this for yourself and others!

    • Reply

      Meg

      May 18, 2014

      thanks Livi! i hope to help others!

  8. Reply

    Jessica

    May 12, 2014

    You have no idea how much I LOVE this post. I find bloggers in general are quite perfectionist and even though we all have rockin bods, we STILL find ways to critique, or hate on our bodies.
    I found a quote the other day that totally resonated with me on this:

    “Did you ever realize how much your body LOVES you? It’s always trying to keep you alive. It’s making sure you breathe when you sleep, stopping cuts from breathing, fixing broken bones, finding ways to beat the illnesses that might get you.
    Your body literally loves you so much…it’s time you start loving it back.”

    Thanks for being awesome, Meg. Glad to hear your vacation was good!

    • Reply

      Meg

      May 18, 2014

      That quote is something like I remind myself on a daily basis :) if my body isn’t looking the way i want it to i just remind myself that it is working so hard to do its best. thankfully…. i have been loving what i see in the mirror since getting back from barbados, so i am just really thankful for that and keep doing self caring things for myself so these feelings will stay! thanks for the comment, Jessica :)

  9. Reply

    Sara @ LovingOnTheRun

    May 12, 2014

    Wow what an amazing post! I think as women we all go through ups and downs with how we feel about our bodies. I know I do! Self acceptance is so amazing! It has taken me a long time and while I still have “my days” I am in a much better place than I used to be! Thank you for sharing this so openly and honestly!

    • Reply

      Meg

      May 18, 2014

      i am so happy you’re in a better place lately xo

  10. Reply

    I’m so proud of you and love you so much girlie!! <3

    • Reply

      Meg

      May 18, 2014

      thanks Katie :) i love you so much too!!!!!!

  11. Reply

    Olga

    May 12, 2014

    What an amazing post! And I understand you 100% – when I am feeling down, not accepting myself fully, I prefer to work on some self-love + overcoming it by doing the things I really love without focusing on my body (I go for long walks, dance like crazy to my favorite music, go out with friends for sushi or just read a book). Everyone has ups and downs – everyone is not feeling confident somedays – it is normal. And the fact that we compare to others it is a human nature – we always strive for love and acceptance.

    • Reply

      Meg

      May 18, 2014

      love this! sounds like we deal with it in the same ways! i could dance to my fav music forever xo

  12. Reply

    You are so beautiful Meg! Keep up the positivity and love :)

    • Reply

      Meg

      May 18, 2014

      awwww thank you! it is my goal to spread the positivity!

  13. Reply

    I absolutely LOVED reading this post this morning. That is such an empowering feeling to fully love and accept your body for the amazing and beautiful thing it is! I am so incredibly happy for you!

    • Reply

      Meg

      May 18, 2014

      empowering is the perfect word!

  14. Reply

    Jenn@Mark My Miles!

    May 12, 2014

    I love your blog and your honesty. Thank you for being YOU!!!

    • Reply

      Meg

      May 18, 2014

      you make me smile :) thank you so much for saying that :) xo

  15. Reply

    Awesome post Meg!:) So brave of you to share those feelings and pictures – YOU LOOK AMAZING!! I think most of us can relate to what you said in some way. We all have a part of our bodies that we tend to “pick over” more than others but overtime it gets easier to love your body instead of reject it. I’m the same way with my belly and you’re an inspiration!!:) Have a lovely day!

    • Reply

      Meg

      May 18, 2014

      the best thing is is that i didn’t even feel nervous to post that picture :)

  16. Reply

    Iman Driscoll

    May 12, 2014

    Woohooo Meg! To still feel marvelous must be amazing! And to self-accept in a realistic manner must be awesome! I’m so happy for you :)

  17. Reply

    You are seriously such an inspiration to me. I have been going through the same thing since my vacation, but reading this makes me realize that I need to love my body rather than put it down. I usually find myself loving most of myself, but hating parts – thank you SO much for publishing this post!

    • Reply

      Meg

      May 18, 2014

      awww i am so happy i could help in some way :) it is my passion to spread body peace and love

  18. Reply

    Keri

    May 12, 2014

    Amazing, amazing, amazing! You are seeing the truth! I am so happy for you! xoxo

    • Reply

      Meg

      May 18, 2014

      yes and i still am! it feels amazing girl

  19. Reply

    Michele

    May 12, 2014

    So beautiful :) Thanks for sharing that photo, it is definitely an angle I think most women struggle with on themselves and I seriously applaud you for talking about your personal struggles with body image.

    And to respond a little to what another commentor said, I personally find it difficult to articulate struggles in my life many times until I start getting some clarity, not sure if this is the case with you but I am able to express feelings sometimes once they are no longer have a strong hold on me. In any case, I can relate :)

    • Reply

      Hannah R.

      May 13, 2014

      I agree with you about having clarity and understanding after we have gone through the struggle. It makes sense to address the matter after the fact when our mind is no longer clouded:)

    • Reply

      Meg

      May 18, 2014

      YES! You have it bang on… it’s like i have to deal with something before making sense of it/putting it into words :) thanks for saying that <3 i definitely relate and that was my reasoning behind this all. it’s just how i deal with things!!!!!!!

  20. Reply

    Ashley M

    May 12, 2014

    This makes my heart smile and my soul sing!!!

    • Reply

      Meg

      May 18, 2014

      haha thank you :) i feel like my soul has been singing lately

  21. Reply

    Emily

    May 12, 2014

    I’m kind of in love with this post.
    You’re so beautiful, inside and out, and I can’t tell you how proud I am of you!

    My stomach has always been my biggest insecurity too and learning to love it has truly changed everything. Confidence is the more attractive than any “perfect body” anyways.

    xoxo

    • Reply

      Meg

      May 18, 2014

      it’s so true! Eddie has taught me so much about confidence being the most attractive thing and it is so so true

  22. Reply

    Cat

    May 12, 2014

    Awesome post girl ;) I totally understand the whole not posting every time we feel self-critical – I think those posts have their place, but positive ones like these are more important to get out there!

    It’s funny, when I went on a holiday last year I had a similar ‘life-affirming’ (or whatever!) experience – I never really worked out exactly what it was, but I try to carry that with me as much as I can.

    • Reply

      Meg

      May 18, 2014

      thank you, Cat :) i don’t hide anything on the blog, but deal with things in my own way and will share everything when i am ready :) thanks for saying that <3

  23. Reply

    So happy to hear this! This post made me smile. Sometimes a vacation from the “norm” is just what we need to shift our attitude and perspective on things. I know for me, when I get anxious or caught up in the details of my everyday routine, I start to get even MORE anxious about little things that don’t really matter. When I go on vacation, I get to leave my responsibilities behind and develop a new perspective and it’s so refreshing. When you’re constantly surrounded by people at the gym and/or in our society in general, it can be tempting to fall into the comparison trap as well. I know if I spend too much time browsing the internet or people watching at the gym, I can get caught up in comparing myself to other women and then not feeling as content with myself. Just some thoughts that may help you figure out where the negative thoughts were initially coming from. I think you’re absolutely gorgeous and fit! <3

    • Reply

      Meg

      May 18, 2014

      thank you for this Ashley! i totally love it all and agree with everything you have to say! yes, i think it’s just the fact that we are surrounded by others in our day to day life that we tend to compare, but on holidays i was on beaches with my mom and dad and just was able to feel comfortable and so so so confident in my own skin. luckily, i am approaching week 2 post vaca and still have these feelings! something clicked

  24. Reply

    Sarah

    May 12, 2014

    This is definitely an interesting topic to me. I go on and off with feeling good in my skin (sometimes in the same day!) but it’s never really about my body…it’s always about something else. I’m interesting to read what you learn as you think about your experience in Barbados…and I’m so excited for you that you had/ have that experience!

    • Reply

      Meg

      May 18, 2014

      i am going to share a bit more tomorrow!

  25. Reply

    april

    May 12, 2014

    this was such an awesome post, meg! unfortunately, i can relate about struggling to love my entire self sometimes. my stomach is an area that i tend to criticize and obsess over at times, as well. i know that it’s because of my disordered eating, but it still drives me crazy. i’ll be traveling to hawaii next month with my mom and i’m a little anxious about getting into a bathing suit in public, but i’m going to remember what you wrote in this post and try to gain some confidence and have love for my ENTIRE self (yes, even my stomach!). life is too short to cover yourself up and not have any fun, right? ;)

    • Reply

      Meg

      May 18, 2014

      seriously, read this post before you go to Hawaii and I will be posting something else for you to read tomorrow that I think will help <3

      • Reply

        april

        May 18, 2014

        aww thanks, meg! looking forward to reading tomorrow’s post <3

        • Reply

          Meg

          May 18, 2014

          i just finished writing it :) can’t wait to hit publish <3

  26. Reply

    Calista

    May 12, 2014

    Meg, I’m so very happy for you and so very proud of you. It takes a lot of hard work to make progress like this. And having a healthier mindset towards our bodies doesn’t come overnight. Telling the public about our insecurities isn’t easy either, so I have to give you a high five for that.

    Funnily enough, my stomach has always been one of the body parts I am most self-conscious of, and it’s a relief to know I’m not alone. Thank you so much for this post!

    • Reply

      Meg

      May 18, 2014

      it seems like that is the part of our bodies that causes most troubles after reading all of the comments. so crazy!? why can’t we just love all of us!? well… we can :) writing a post tomorrow that i think you’ll enjoy

  27. Reply

    Jordan

    May 12, 2014

    You are awesome. Plain and simple. Thank you so much for being honest about your struggles. I feel like people can so easily fake it that they have everything all together but guess what? EVERYONE struggles at some point. People don’t relate to someone that “has it all together”. I relate to everything you’ve written here, yet another reason why I adore you. ;)
    In the past when I’ve found myself trying to come up with the why’s and how’s of something, I generally find that it all can be traced back to a change that God has made in me. I have spent a lot of time trying to “figure things out”, and find the greatest peace when I just “let go, and let God.” Those are the times that I truly fall in love with Him all over again!
    xoxo

    • Reply

      Meg

      May 18, 2014

      love this comment! thank you so much! God does have so much to do with it <3 HE changed something within me <3 HE opened me up to something!

  28. Reply

    Kristen

    May 12, 2014

    Meg, I can’t even tell you how amazing this post is!! I love your honesty and how open you are, I know it’s not easy. My stomach has always been the hardest for me to accept as well, maybe that’s most girls?! I’m finally getting to the point where I’m so proud of my body, even my stomach with it’s 6″ scar from my surgeries ;) My battle wound, right?!

    • Reply

      Meg

      May 18, 2014

      it seems like everyone who has commented is insecure with their stomach!? I DO NOT GET IT!!!!!!!!! I will be posting something tomorrow that I hope will help everyone!

      I am so proud of you and all you do. Your body deserves so much love

  29. Reply

    Allison

    May 12, 2014

    you are beautiful. I am so happy you found your inner happy and love for yourself. you spread so much love to others you deserve all the self-love you can get! xoxo

    • Reply

      Meg

      May 18, 2014

      thank you so so much! it is my mission to spread love to others <3

  30. Reply

    Danielle

    May 12, 2014

    Beautiful post! I’ve followed your blog for quite some time and I’ve always loved your honesty and sincerity. We all go through times where were critical of ourselves and it’s not always easy to admit it.

    So glad you enjoyed your trip!

    • Reply

      Meg

      May 18, 2014

      thank you so much xoxoxo love your comments, always!!!!!

  31. Reply

    sarah

    May 13, 2014

    Uhhh..best.post.ever. You are SUCH a lovely, relate-able, gorgeous girl <3.

    • Reply

      Meg

      May 18, 2014

      wow sarah :) thank you so so so soooo much !!!!!!! <3

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  33. Reply

    Purelytwins

    May 13, 2014

    oh sis!! oh boy do we struggle with body image. Just like you we would “see” ourselves a certain way in the mirror. It can be hard to compare, but like you we are working hard on seeing ourselves in a good way! :) We are not the leanest. We are not the strongest. We are just us. Two girls that love fitness, food, and enjoying life! We both have a hard time with our legs!! We just cannot seem to gain muscle there, and we both have cellulite which we hate. But we try to not focus on it but it is very hard, especially now short season is here.

    Thank you for the reminder to love ourselves…all parts!
    xoxo
    love you!

    • Reply

      Meg

      May 18, 2014

      thank YOU for this comment. i love you girls so much and it has nothing to do with your bodies! it has to do with who you ARE on the INSIDE <3

  34. Reply

    Calee

    May 13, 2014

    Hey Meg — just want to say that you look fantastic. If I remember right, you were trying to put on some weight and be healthy. You look really healthy now! I know the feeling of looking down and seeing my stomach like that. It’s not a good feeling, especially when you’re rebounding from being a bit unhealthy and needed to put on some weight. It’s taken me a few years, but I’m finally mostly okay with seeing that. Good job getting to this point! And glad to see you had a great time in Barbados.

    • Reply

      Meg

      May 18, 2014

      Yeah, I was totally cool with seeing my stomach like that :) I love it :)

  35. Reply

    Hannah R.

    May 13, 2014

    Love this post and your honesty. I think loving our entire selves is something we all struggle or have struggled with before. For me some days its my stomach, other days it’s my skinny legs, and some days I’m completely happy with it all! Thanks for just keeping it real over here:)

    • Reply

      Meg

      May 18, 2014

      always keeping it real ;) thanks Hannah <3 love you

  36. Reply

    Jody - Fit at 56

    May 13, 2014

    With all the pressure out there & especially for girls & women, this is such a hard thing – self love. AT 56, I still struggle.. some days better than others.. but I LOVED this post & all you had learned about YOU!!!!! Honest, you look amazing!!! AND so few can sit & not have something happen in that tummy area – You deserve to be proud & love yourself!!! I am sure none of us see what you do – that is the big thing – we are our own worst critics!!!

    • Reply

      Meg

      May 18, 2014

      it is so true! no one critiques ourselves like we do!!!!! but you know what!? i’ve been so much better lately and it is amazing

  37. Reply

    Yay! I’m so happy for you, Meg!! You are doing amazing :)

    • Reply

      Meg

      May 18, 2014

      thank you soooo much love!!

  38. Reply

    That’s incredible! I had a similar experience on our honeymoon in Hawaii because everyone was walking around in bikinis and I felt if they could do it with confidence (some people with bodies less conventionally attractive than mine) then I could, too. It was really freeing, first time in my life I’ve felt that way! Unfortunately the feeling was short-lived and by the time I got home and was ready to upload the pictures on Facebook, I had second thoughts. I did feel more confident in a bikini for a while afterward, though. My body has changed a ton since then, though, so it might take some adjustment and another vacation before I have the same feeling again… although I do feel great when I’m lifting in the gym! Something about loving my body for what it can do. Hooray body confidence! Thanks for sharing your story!

    • Reply

      Meg

      May 18, 2014

      yes love your body for what it can do! i am sharing some more things about this topic tomorrow! <3

  39. Reply

    This is absolutely beautiful, and you are such an inspiration! I think when we are able to get away from our “normal” life, it brings a new sense of self. And I think we forget about that self when we are dealing with the chaos of our lives (work, family, friends, school, etc.). I’m so happy you were able to find this love for yourself!
    Now I think I need to get myself on a vacation!

    • Reply

      Meg

      May 18, 2014

      you do need a vacation! i forgot how amazing they make me feel!

  40. Reply

    Yes!! Don’t we all at times?! Its a continuing process, but I do know that so many other problems are rooted in lack of self love so its a high priority on my list of things to work on!

    • Reply

      Meg

      May 18, 2014

      it takes time but keep working at it, Hayley <3

  41. Reply

    I’m so happy for you! That really is exciting. It’s so nice to feel confident in your own skin!
    I know what you mean about being self conscious, but lately, I have been feeling fierce in my own skin. I even went swimming in the community pool in a bikini, without wearing a cover-up. I have not done that in years! I wasn’t shy about it or anything. It made me so happy. :D

    • Reply

      Meg

      May 18, 2014

      feeling fierce!!!!!! LOVE IT! Good for you girl! I looooove hearing that :D

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