Today, I wore a bathing suit

Clementon 1More specifically and more importantly, I wore a bathing suit and nothing else – no pants or shorts, no t-shirt, no cover up of any kind. Today, I wore a bathing suit in public, and ya know what? It was okay.

(I don’t have photographic evidence because, well, progress not perfection.)

It’s been about 6 or 7 years since I’ve worn a bathing suit without a shirt and capris over top . . . and that was about 80 pounds ago. I was still fat then, but I wasn’t this fat. I hated how I looked back then too, but not this much.

Today, my family went to Clementon Park. It was a bus trip with my daughter’s summer camp, so she did have some friends she could go on rides with (I only did the log flume and the Ferris wheel because I’m not sure I’d fit on the others). But around 3pm, my daughter wanted to go in the wave pool and none of her friends were around . . . and, honestly, I wanted to go in too. I love roller coasters and I love the water and I love doing fun things with my daughter . . . and while I may still be too fat for the roller coasters, I am not too fat for the wave pool. So, I decided to join my daughter.

I didn’t bring a second pair of pants, and I knew if I wore my capris in the pool that I’d end up back on the bus wet and uncomfortable. I made a decision . . . and for the first time in 6ish years, my thighs saw sunlight.

This is a big deal, and not just because of my insecurities about my weight (though that’s certainly a nice size chunk of it). Some of you reading this might already know that I’m a (mostly) recovering self-injurer. My thighs have always been my burning and cutting location of choice because I’ve always felt fairly confident they would never be seen. I have scars from lighter burns and razor cuts, some from my most recent relapse, which was only 3 months ago. I can write about self-injury, and I can talk about self-injury, but I have not put myself in a position to allow the world to see my scars (not this fresh, not this noticeable) for about 17 years.

Clementon 2I can’t say the decision to remove my capris came without anxiety. I spent more time than I care to discuss thinking about the possibility throughout the day. But in the end, enjoying the moment with my daughter was more important than my insecurities.

And guess what . . . I had a great time. We splashed and played and jumped waves for nearly an hour. My daughter didn’t notice my scars; she couldn’t have cared less about my fat. She just enjoyed playing with mommy, getting flipped and dunked by mommy, laughing and being silly with mommy.

Next year, I hope to ride those roller coasters with her, but in the meantime, I can still be an awesome mom who does fun things with her kid . . . . even when . . . . especially when that means overcoming my insecurities.

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4 responses to this post.

  1. Posted by Kimberly Brooks on August 6, 2014 at 10:18 pm

    Wow, Dayle, I am so proud of you sharing your story. You are courageous. I have never worn a bathing suit without a cover up in my adult life. I no doubt felt great to set yourself free. I wish I had the courage. I have scars from my allergies and I know people would stare and I just don’t want the hassle so I never expose my back and upper arms. It’s funny how you think you are alone until you hear someone else’s story.

    Reply

    • It was terrifying, but it really did feel wonderful! I can’t say I’m eager to do it again any time soon (though I am joining a Y next weekend and I will not be bringing a cover up with to work out in their pool), but it was a great step. . . . . .

      And yes, you’re absolutely right . . . . when I first started opening up about personal things on this blog, it was more for my own catharsis . . . then people started commenting that they could relate and how it was helping them . . . and their comments helped me! So now, I continue to do it for my own catharsis, but I also do it because I know someone else out there may need to read it . . . . and I may need to read what they have to say! :)

      Reply

  2. Awww, this is great. I’m proud of you for overcoming your insecurities, especially as it meant having a great time with your daughter!

    Reply

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