New Year Resolution 2018: Love and accept your body

My oldest friend got married this week.

Published: 03rd January 2018 04:00 AM  |   Last Updated: 02nd January 2018 10:55 PM   |  A+A-

My oldest friend got married this week. The holiday season, therefore, has also carried the wedding whirlwind. I remember meals and events, some clothes as well; I have spent the past week connecting with friends old and new, laughing loudly, surrounded by people I love and that seems like a great start to the year already. When the generic ‘family, friendships, love and laughter’ wishes are ringing true right at the beginning, I wonder what else to wish for in 2018. But because I think of myself as a wishful person, but not so much a resolutions one, it’s not surprising that some incidents of the past few days have given me food for thought. Here are some of them:

I have a friend from school, who back then was the most popular amongst us. She had it all going for her (she still does) — confidence levels that feel humanely unattainable, a sunny outlook on life, a great sense of humour, and a string of boyfriends. Ask anyone and they’d tell you that this person, also a dancer, is gorgeous. But you know what she says to me? “I’ve never been able to look at myself in a mirror and feel happy about what I see.”

Another friend, also reckoned gorgeous by those around her, struggled with a tummy tucker through dinner one night. I wondered why she put herself through the discomfort of what sounded like fashion’s verse of the noose, tightening around the stomach, and killing what is left of her self-worth. I asked her and she said that she has accepted the flab around her middle. “It’s what people will think (of me being lazy) and the photos that scare me,” she said.

If each meal of the season could be differentiated by its cuisine, the conversation at the table could have been copy-pasted. There will be ‘diet talk’ during the meal and ‘how to fit into clothes’ exclamations right after, which excludes unintentionally the disinterested and the non-dieting, and expects the ‘best’ of the lot to bother about both. Then, there was the person, who wanted to ‘do’ everything with her partner, who wanted to carry a part of her partner’s soul as a declaration of love and who, in my humble opinion, could’ve been confusing co-dependency with conjoint lives.

Why are these ‘friends’ all women, you may ask? The truth is that I’m not sure why, because men face very similar issues too and it isn’t any easier, knowing from conversations with the few of them vocalise what the world does to them. So then my wishes for the year would be: that we work towards loving our bodies, however different or non-conforming they might be and maybe by the end of the year find no flaws with them; that when accept our bodies fully, we will wean off painful products that project us unnaturally; that we will eat without guilt and take out the regret, if any, by ourselves at the gym instead of being the killjoy at a group dinner; that we work towards love that allows for autonomy that further anchors the relationship.

If a ‘revolution is the force that gives life meaning’, promise to start a revolution in yourself this year, and then also try to ‘be a lamp, a lifeboat or a ladder’ for others.

Archanaa Seker

seker.archanaa@gmail.com

The writer is a city-based activist, in-your-face feminist and a media glutton

Stay up to date on all the latest Opinions news with The New Indian Express App. Download now
(Get the news that matters from New Indian Express on WhatsApp. Click this link and hit 'Click to Subscribe'. Follow the instructions after that.)

Comments

Disclaimer : We respect your thoughts and views! But we need to be judicious while moderating your comments. All the comments will be moderated by the newindianexpress.com editorial. Abstain from posting comments that are obscene, defamatory or inflammatory, and do not indulge in personal attacks. Try to avoid outside hyperlinks inside the comment. Help us delete comments that do not follow these guidelines.

The views expressed in comments published on newindianexpress.com are those of the comment writers alone. They do not represent the views or opinions of newindianexpress.com or its staff, nor do they represent the views or opinions of The New Indian Express Group, or any entity of, or affiliated with, The New Indian Express Group. newindianexpress.com reserves the right to take any or all comments down at any time.

facebook twitter whatsapp