Happiness Doesn't Need a Size - On acceptance + Lizzo
I’ve decided to focus on looking at things with the glass not just half full, but overflowing. With extra weight.
Rather than strain to get things back to the way they were (like squeezing into my pre-baby jeans or my button-downs that won’t budge), I’m going to let go and ease into the now.
It all started with a *tiny* shopping spree.
While visiting my grandfather in upstate New York, I found one of my grandmother’s old catalogs for plus size women. After perusing pages of models who shared my similar body type, I called the 1-800-number and ordered $350 worth of goods. #oopsies
The truth is that my pre-baby clothes looked ridiculous on me, and I was tired of holding onto this ideal of getting back to my old self. Let’s face it: my body has changed since having babies and it’s been three years.
This body ain’t going back.
For decades, I longed to be in a body different from my own. I thought if only I could have thinner arms and a smaller torso, I would be good. Of course that meant the body I was in was somehow wrong (or wrongly assigned).
For those of you who struggle with your body image or weight, I know you can relate to what I’m saying. The struggle is real and it’s lifelong, requiring a daily check-in to understand that our self-worth isn’t associated with the size we wear.
I found the struggle with my weight exhausting, and I thought to myself, why not just accept myself as I am—as if I’ve already reached my goals? I could stop fighting with myself internally about what I’m not, and appreciate where I am and who I am.
Now in my 40s, I finally see that I’m exactly where I’m supposed to be. I can ease into that feeling with gratitude for what my body has done in creating two lives—and it’s still really strong!
The beauty of welcoming change is that I can embrace what's ahead rather than look back. I can channel that feeling by choosing to think that I’ve already arrived. That energy is the recipe for gracefully arriving at your next destination with a sense of calm.
The day my plus-size package came in the mail, it felt like Christmas! Each piece fit perfectly and immediately I felt a sense of relief; the internal fight was over! Why had I been trying so hard to dwell in the past?
Today, I own a Peloton bike. I ride at home listening to Lizzo’s “Tempo” while the kids are asleep. My goal to get back to regular, healthy activity supersedes the goal of reaching a certain number on the scale or fitting into old clothes.
Now I’m getting comfortable with the new me. I’m focused on being happy in my current body—and if I stay where I’m at, I’m OK with that, too!
Valentina Verani is a Licensed Mental Health Counselor, Marriage and Family Therapist and Registered yoga teacher who runs her own private practice since 2011 based out of Beacon Hill, Boston. Her advice has been featured in Boston Magazine, Dr. Oz's The Good Life Magazine, Medium, and Well + Good.
About the author
Valentina was born in Santiago, Chile and came to the U.S. when she was three-years-old. Her parents moved to attend graduate school in Boston, and Valentina says that watching her parents acclimate to a different culture with English as their second language and observing their hard work ethic was the catalyst that ignited the fire within to manifest her vision of entrepreneurial dreams into reality.
She obtained her Bachelor of Arts from the University of Massachusetts, Amherst and was trained as a therapist receiving her Master’s of Science from Nova Southeastern University and The Brief Therapy Institute.
Valentina is passionate about connecting and empowering Latina and all women in business everywhere. She writes about issues involving self-love, motherhood, acceptance, and transformation.
Valentina is a wife and a mother of two, who has traveled the world and enjoys spending time with her family on the South Shore and on Cape Cod.
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