“and I said to my body, softly, ‘I want to be your friend.’ it took a long breath and replied, ‘I have been waiting my whole life for this'” -Nayyirah Waheed
Isn’t that a lovely quote? I know this conversation intimately. My own body has waited with bated breath for me to softly whisper words of wanting and friendship, and I have cried so many silent tears, desperately wishing that I could find something of value within myself. It was a struggle for a very long time, but I know that I have definitely come to the point where I am able to say to my body that I want to be friends.
A big part of the struggle has always been in accepting the good that others have always seen within me. There have been those who have chosen to see only ugliness within me, and somehow it is much easier to believe those comments over the positive ones. Isn’t that completely messed up?! But, messed up or not, it has always been easier to see my flaws, real or imagined, than it has been to see my strengths and the positives.
Training has changed me in so many ways. My family might joke at times about it, questioning just how good the training actually has been or not; however, I do believe that they are just teasing. Training has made me strong, inside and out. In some ways I think I have always been strong, but I always doubted myself. While I know that I am not perfect and not always on top of things, I now know who I am and what I am capable of.
I think my dear friend sums it up quite nicely with her words within my birthday card this year:
“You are powerful, unstoppable, confident, brave, motivated, creative, inspired, unique…I couldn’t believe that I found this all on a t-shirt made for you. Every time I see you, I see this amazing, different, empowered woman-it’s stunning! You have developed the best parts of you so that it’s all that’s there. No longer quiet, unassuming Ange (whom I loved just as much as I love this new version of the best of you). Every year I look at all you have accomplished and it stuns me.”