When I wrote about this subject before, I had many opinions from readers that were supportive, questioning, or surprised. These are all feelings that I have about it too. To be honest, I am frightened for a variety of reasons.
However, since I've been thinking about this, I have discovered many women who have had the same surgery and are extremely happy with the results.
I have also found that many people in my life, who seem to be happy, fairly content people, also have an area or two that they would like changed.
I have to ask this question of them because I am asking it of myself.
I sat in the doctor's office last week and looked at photo after photo of women with perfectly fine bodies who wanted something different. I also saw photo after photo of women who definitely had a wonderful improvement after surgery.
Part of me wonders: do they love their bodies now?
Those that looked fine before, are they finally content?
Do we all have a fear of not being accepted for what we look like?
It is really easy for me or someone else to say, "Well, my partner just better accept me as I am now."
But do we accept ourselves?
Soldier never had a complaint about my body. I did hear him, however, be very critical of other women's bodies and of his own body. Maybe he had thoughts about my body that he never voiced to me. (Because you don't bite the hand that feeds you.)
Perhaps those that have complaints about a partner's body simply do not accept their own insecurities?
Maybe it is in accepting, or changing, our own body image issues that we are finally able to stop comparing or critiquing?
In my A Course in Miracles group today, we talked about projection.
The reason that we project is because there are attributes about ourselves that we are ashamed of.
To relate this to the subject at hand, it is much easier to get angry at a partner or blame someone who seemingly has an opinion about our bodies, than it is to simply face the fact that there is something we are not happy with. We also forget that all of us has something that we are not happy with physically.
I know just as many men with body image issues as women. I've heard men complain about the size of their penises, to the shape of their asses, to the hair that grows on their bodies. It isn't just women who worry about what we look like.
So I wonder, if we own it, if we take full responsibility for our body image insecurities and not project blame on someone else for their seeming lack of acceptance, does that, in turn, help us to accept ourselves?
Yes, all in all, it would be nice to have someone say that you're perfect just the way you are.
It seems that only a person who thinks that about themselves would be willing to say it. Since most of us don't see ourselves that way, we will project our insecurities or imperfections on to others. Maybe instead of projecting or expecting validation that we don't believe ourselves, we could simply turn the finger around and point that back at ourselves.
Maybe then, we can look at it, own it and either decide to do something about it, as I am doing, or learn to accept ourselves as is.
Then when someone tells you that you're perfect, you will finally actually believe it.
Because really, the only way that we can be affected by what someone says to us is if we believe it about ourselves.
And that could go either way.
"No one can make you feel inferior without your consent."