I am usually the type to create a bulleted, overly-ambitious list of resolutions on January 1st, but this year, I've just stared at my computer screen blankly, not really sure what to write at all. It occurred to me that everything I had wanted to accomplish for 2013, I actually managed to accomplish, except for one thing. The SAME one thing that has been on my to-do list EVERY. SINGLE. YEAR: gain 10 lbs.

This year, it will not be on the list.

On my 30th birthday last year, I decided that it wasn't enough to just be thin, that skinny does not and has never meant that a person is automatically healthy. I have no idea why people assume that. In fact, my dietary choices were rather appalling (okay, fine, they kind of still are. I just really like beer, wine, and coffee, and I consider almond roca to be a perfectly valid breakfast option. I'm working on it). The fact is, there is no way to be healthy when you're completely sedentary and consume more sugar and carbs than a bulimic sorority girl who was just dumped by her boyfriend. 

But, I decided to make a change for the better. I am less than 3 weeks away from making it to ONE YEAR of prioritizing fitness and health. And for once, I didn't make it about my physical appearance, or my weight. I did in the beginning, but now that I'm here in the final stretch, I realize my priorities had shifted somewhere along the way.

At 31, I will be healthier, stronger, and faster than I have ever been in my life. I will admit that there is virtually no visible OUTWARD change in the way I look (well, unless you're so privileged as to see me neeekkkkkkiiiiiiid! Whoooooo!) But really, this is no longer about vanity. The difference in appearance between me working out 5 days per week and me sitting on my ass watching entire seasons of Korean dramas on Hulu while funneling cheap wine down my throat... is negligible, as depressing as that might sound. If it WERE merely vanity, there is no way I would have carried on for an entire year of working out. Oddly enough, I am not bothered by that. I am learning to make peace with my body. I've had my ups and downs, but I no longer want to change the way I look. I'm not even sure how or when that happened. I am no longer obsessing over the number on a scale or thinking I'll magically be "hot" if I could just gain 10 lbs.

A few weeks ago, I read some very glowing reviews on a company that specializes in "petite lingerie" for us small-busted, small-framed, tiny people. I was excited. Ill-fitting bras are par for the course when you are outside of the "normal" spectrum of sizes (whether you are small like me, or on the opposite end and your boobs land somewhere in the middle of the alphabet... good luck finding ANYTHING in your size, let alone something cute or sexy). 

I could fit my butt cheeks in those.
I paid the ridiculous high price and bought what is now the most expensive bra I own... that also doesn't fit. I actually cried. I sobbed, in fact. It wasn't a pretty moment. For some reason, it just really caught me off guard, and I became unhinged by this stupid bra that I couldn't fill out. I curled up in a ball, pulled a blanket over my head, and cried. It felt like every bully in junior high and high school mocking me again. I just could not believe that I was actually TOO SMALL for a company that specifically caters to people who are small! And in my huge facebook whine-fest about it, along with jokes about just buying new boobs or getting inserts put in my bra... I realized, "But I don't WANT bigger boobs. My boobs are fine. I don't want a bra stuffed full of padding. I just want something that actually fits my small boobs, damn it!" In that depressing moment, I realized something very important about myself: I had accepted what I have always viewed as not just my biggest flaw, but also a "deformity". I realized that I was actually okay with my very small, nonexistent breasts. I was just upset that the rest of the world did not see fit to manufacture a pretty little bra in my size.
AA boobs are like getting an A+, right?
It may not sound like that big of a deal, but at age 23, I was literally a huge deposit down and one week away from my surgery for a breast augmentation. The exact opposite of self-acceptance. The best thing that ever happened was me getting screwed out of having it done. (Seriously, can you imagine how fucking dumb I'd look with 500ccs of silicone-based self-loathing shoved into my chest? Because people totally take 98 lb Asian girls with huge gravity-defying tits seriously!). And, I also had (I guess I still have) quite the collection of extreme padded push-up bras, stuffed full of lies. I used every trick in the book to create the visual illusion that I was something I wasn't. I was going to surgically alter myself for it. So, getting to the point where I realized that I don't WANT huge ta-tas was a major milestone for me.
With all the money you'll make in stripping or porn, they'll practically pay for themselves!
I don't know how or when that changed. I realize I haven't even touched any of those ridiculous padded bras in so long that they are literally DUSTY. Yes, dusty. There are bats living in there and new species of spiders making their home in the squishy concaves of my push-up bras. (This may also be due to the fact that I have become REALLY lazy about how I dress at home, and bras are pretty much just for "date night" or "hosting guests who may or may not appreciate my awesome Mom-Nipples waving hi to them)

Sometime between 23 and 30, I started moving away from that hatred of my thin frame and flat, boyish figure. I have learned to accept and even occasionally celebrate the negative space of my chest, and appreciate what my own husband always has: that I have my own understated sex appeal. I am not that "obvious" brand of sexy (and honestly, I don't want to be; all that attention sounds exhausting); I'm the kind that sneaks up on you and catches you by surprise. I know that physically, I am not everyone's cup of tea (more power to you if you love a woman with some kickin' curves!), but I am not bothered by it. At this age, I would MUCH rather be an "acquired taste". In fact, I smile about it.

This is how I look. And it's how I'm supposed to look. I will not fight my own body anymore, because it is worth so much more than the measurements of its parts, and was never meant to be merely decorative anyway. I am a well-oiled machine... that runs on beer and almond roca, but hey, I'm working on that. Baby steps, man.
You can't even handle all the sexiness going on in this photo right now.
And at the end of the day, I have never felt better about myself than after a workout or a good run. There is no drug like that (and trust me, I would know *cough*). There is no high like that. There is no anti-depressant that has ever made me feel like that. There is no therapy that can compete with my treadmill. A year of working out has changed the way I view myself and my body. It has reminded me that first and foremost, my body is functional. Incredibly functional. I'm sure I'll still have the occasional day where I am envious of my fuller-figured sisters, just like I'm occasionally envious of women who are taller than me, blonder than me, more blue-eyed than me, or can afford a twice-weekly housecleaner (fucking bitches with their housecleaners *mumble grumble*), which is just more of the same shit too, I realize, but those days are very few and far between lately.

My 31st birthday is rapidly approaching. There is a confidence and self-assurance that comes with age, and I have never been happier to no longer be a teenager, college student, or twenty-something. God I was whiny, bitchy, insecure, and mopey. If I had a time machine, I'd punch 23-year-old me in the face each and every time I stared in the mirror and sighed in that annoying way that I sigh (my husband knows what I'm talking about. It really is the most annoying of sighs).

I look forward to the rest of 2014. My only resolution? Keep being awesome. I place no conditions on it. For the first time in my life, I can't think of a single thing I would want to change.

...Well, I do kind of need a haircut though. 


01/13/2014 4:41am

Best. Post. EVER!

Amazing that our society tells women that we all need to "improve" our looks with makeup, diet, clothes, shoes, accessories...I sense a theme.

01/13/2014 11:55am

And I wasted the prime of youth eating all of that up! I'd have so much more money if I just liked myself from the beginning... Oddly enough, I think I am more attractive in my 30s than I ever was in my 20s, even if we're judging on a purely superficial level here. I made a lot of TRAGIC fashion choices. Can you imagine me with short bleached blonde hair? Because that's a thing that happened. *shudder*

01/15/2014 6:19pm

I am so very happy for you Tracy. Truly.


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