ATTACK OF THE SUMMER BOD
A tale of a ravenous beast born from ulterior motives…
Originally written May 21, 2019 & published in (N’T) Magazine
As the days get longer and sunnier, I feel I must warn you of the impending arrival of our craving for the “Summer Bod.” What is the Summer Bod you ask? It is a mythological beast that holds tremendous power over you, though you may not even know it. It is stealthy, and hides in your Instagram feeds and in the images on your favourite store’s website. It hides in plain site, never directly attacking. Through subtle appearances on your “suggested Pins,” it takes its place at the forefront of your mind, consuming your days and planting treacherous thoughts within. Feasting on your insecurities, it makes you feel less then, broken; like you need to be fixed.
Just thinking about the notorious Summer Bod can trigger nausea and despair. When you get a last minute invitation to a cottage and know that you will inevitably be seen in a bathing suit, the Summer Bod creeps its way into your subconscious. It has the power to trick you into thinking that food is the enemy. Before you know it, your desire for the Summer Bod completely takes over your mind and lifestyle. If it catches your attention for too long, the Summer Bod will sink its claws into your mind until you feel uncomfortable in your own skin.
What happens if you try and resist? You are consumed with fear that you are not as good as the Summer Bods. Fear that when the time comes to make your way to the beaches and pools, you will not measure up to the beauty of the Summer Bod. For you see, the Summer Bod is no friend, but a foe. A foe that seeks only to bring you down and cause you pain – that is until you open your wallet to transform yourself into something more “beautiful” and worthy.
But fear not, my friends, for you see, the Summer Bod is not real like you and me. It is notorious, yes, but not real. It is through the commercial society around us that we fall prey to the clutches of this imaginary beast. We tell our selves it must be real because social media tells us it is so. They teach us to crave the Summer Bod if we wish to be happy and enjoy the summer weather. So how do we fight off this false beast?
We wear shorts, regardless of the fact that we have cellulite. We dance like no one is watching, even when thoughts of the Summer Bod try to convince us to keep ourselves hidden from the world. When we get invited to the beach, instead of thinking “how many pounds can I lose before the weekend,” or “can I grow bigger boobs in two days,” we will think, “I cannot wait to make some memories.” We will be proud of our bodies, no matter the shape or size, and when the Summer Bod tries to sneak its way back into our minds we will say “nay, nay” beast, not today!
For real though, whether you are a size “XXS” or “XXL,” whether you are an A-cup or an E-cup, you are beautiful, and your “Summer Bod” is YOUR BODY, as it is right in this very moment. It does not need to be altered to fit someone else’s standards of beauty. The companies that try to convince you otherwise are the ones that profit from your insecurities. They try and make you feel worse about yourself so that you seek out their products to “make you better.” They feed only their own ambitions and you are good enough without them. If you genuinely want to make changes to your body because it makes YOU happy then live your best life and GO FOR IT! I am simply trying to say that we are in control of our own bodies and our own standards of beauty! Let us not forget what is real life and what is simply an illusion designed by consumerism and social media. You are GORGEOUS, just as you are!