An Ode to Celebrating Yourself in All Body Sizes

Photo by Anna Shvets

An Accredited Social Health Activist (ASHA) worker visited me today. She wanted to check if I took both my COVID-19 vaccination doses. I am incredibly thankful that activists in India are checking on us. A question she asked surprised me, however.

Did you lose weight?

A person whom I met once around 6 months ago remembered how I looked. It does not matter if you are plus-sized or a size zero; people remember your body size. It is a part of you.

She told me my face looked “fuller” before, hinting that she preferred my chubby cheeks.

Did you gain weight?

This question is what I got asked 6 months before by family, friends, relatives, even small kids. You would think kids do not care about body size, but there they are, commenting about how much weight you have gained.

They told me my face looked too “full,” hinting they preferred seeing me without my chubby cheeks.

Everywhere you go, people judge you for your body size. No one tells you, “You have the perfect body size.” So it is up to us to deem ourselves perfect in all sizes.

Being body positive means not to let “tags” define or trigger you. It means to accept yourself in all body sizes, whatever it chooses to evolve into tomorrow.

When people say I look thin, I say yes. When people say I have gained weight, I say yes. I am okay with both. They can pass their judgments or statements. It does not matter because I am comfortable with any form my body chooses to be.

Such open questions on weight are not going anywhere, unfortunately. I remember seeing a video by Supriya (@Supaarwoman) on Insta. She said when people call her fat, she tells them, “I am not going to take that as an insult because that’s my body type. You are just saying out loud what my body type is. Why should I be ashamed of my body type?” When you think of it that way, you realize that what she said makes a lot of sense.

When someone simply states your body type (aka “you are fat” or “you are thin”), why consider it as body shaming or an insult? When you take that power away from the perpetrator, and you truly embrace yourself for who you are, you become empowered.

Own your body type. When you do, you become body positive to the fullest degree.

An Ode to Body Positivity

Photo by Anna Shvets on

Do you ever look at your old photos reflecting how thin you were, but ironically back then you used to always think the exact opposite. That you would look better if you just knocked off that extra flab invisible to others and visible only to your self-judging eyes? 

The truth is – there’s never a perfect size. 

People are rarely happy with their body weight. Even if they are thin. Take it from me. I don’t like to talk about my body image issues with anyone nowadays because people usually become condescending and say things like:

Why do u need to exercise??? what about me then????

I want to smack thin people who say they have to lose weight.”

There is rarely a “Everyone should exercise – thin or fat.

But that’s the problem right there – we always look at ourselves with a judging magnifying glass irrespective of our body size. On top of that, we also end up judging others if their body weight goals are different from ours.

We don’t see what others see even if they say we are fine the way we are. 

We look at the mirror and see a lot of flaws. This is why thin people exercise more and get thinner – and they still think they need to lose weight. 

I’m saying this to all those who wish to lose weight – it’s not always the answer.

Show empathy, no matter the body size. The mind is ever judging. Never add to the mess.