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Saturday, January 4, 2014

WHY I'M SMASHING THE SCALE THIS YEAR: MIRIAM, ZENA, AND ADELA

(All images by Lisa Foote)

What is Smash the Scale about?

Well, Smashing the Scale isn't necessarily about destroying metal, although any girl (and guy!) at this incredible shoot would tell you that is incredibly liberating. Instead it's about making a conscious decision to detach your worth from that number on your scale. Smashing the Scale isn't about being unhealthy. It's about deciding what your definition of beauty is and knowing that it is enough. Smashing the Scale isn't about exclusion either; you may not understand the concept or be interested. And that's totally okay. Leave us to our crowbars and keep on trucking. We'll always be rooting for you. Smashing the Scale isn't about anger, but instead the joy of calling society on the carpet and telling it how it is. And Smashing the Scale isn't about being perfect at loving yourself, but rather about making a personal commitment to starting your self love journey. Smashing the Scale is much bigger than it sounds, it's the most empowering thing you can do. Try doing it for you.

You can read the original post here.


This entire week will be dedicated to sharing our stories about why we've decided to Smash the Scale this year. Why we've decided to separate our value as a human from the number on a scale. Why we've decided to define our OWN beauty and not buy into what others tell us we should be.

(Miriam by Lisa Foote)
Miriam:
I can't remember a time when I wasn't obsessed with my weight. I'm sure there was one because, let's be honest, hating your body is a learned behavior, not a natural one. I struggled with eating disorders all through high school. I evaluated my beauty based on the number of ribs I could count. I thought purging and starving myself and hating myself so much was just a fact of life – it was a means to an end and I knew I would finally be happy once I was skinny. That type of mentality is a sickness, but it's also an addiction. 

I used purging as a stress reliever; tears would stream down my cheeks as I leaned over the toilet and told myself that all my stress/worries/anger/hatred was being purged from my body as well as all my nasty fat. Even after I overcame my eating disorders, I still never really let go of that mentality: that happiness came from reaching a specific number on that stupid scale. So I tried to achieve the same thing through exercise and diet. I had some success, but always my weight fluctuated as I failed whatever diet I was doing that week or skipped the gym for some reason or another. And I thought: I am a failure because I am fat. 

In the end, I have decided that I can't be a slave to a number anymore. How many hours/days/months/years have I spent devoted to that unattainable and unworthy goal: happiness through perfection? I wasn't happy at my skinniest, when my skin clung to my bones, I was more miserable than I've ever been in my life. Now I will strive for a different goal: learning to finally love myself, no matter what size I am.

(Zena by Lisa Foote)

Zena:
I hated myself for being fat. There, I typed it. I hated myself. A lot. As long as I can remember I felt ugly, sub human and unloveable because I was always so large. My memory tries to tell me that even as a fetus I was ashamed of my size but logic insists it started closer to a school appropriate age. As I got older I became angrier and angrier at myself, at society and at the whole world. 
I decided to start making some of my own rules. 

Rules like:
Stop trying to destroy yourself.
Fight self hate.
No pants.

Now I can warmly refer to my self as "large and in charge," which is very tongue in cheek as I'm pretty spazzy with responsibility.

I feel truly ok (sometimes ) with my body and occasionally even a little in love with it. It took a lot of fat acceptance blog reading and one magical scale smashing photo shoot to get to this point, and sometimes I still back slide.

I'm smashing the scale because hating yourself based on a number is a toxic waste of time. This year I will continue learning how to love myself and use my body for good instead of evil.


(Adela by Lisa Foote)
Adela:
About two years ago, the numbers I saw on the scale every morning determined for me whether or not I ate that day, whether or not I’d keep down the food I had already eaten, whether or not I’d punish myself, whether I should live or simply exist. I allowed those numbers to have power over me, to dictate what I did and how I felt and saw myself. What I find truly amazing is how brainwashed the mainstream media has us. The definition of what’s “beautiful” versus what is “unacceptable” streaming the entire planet via the internet, magazines, television and overall attitudes towards people who do not look airbrushed with their clothes off.
Flash forward to today. It’s been two years since the angel in the body of a jewelry designer picked me up from a bus stop and the rest they say is history, but that is a story for another time. I am a plus size model who has suffered from an eating disorder not that long ago. Being submersed into a world where your curves are not only accepted but praised – that was something new. Being involved with the Body Love Conference is being dedicated to helping those women who are still stuck hating themselves. I hope that with the efforts of the Militant Baker and the photographers she works with, “ideal” mainstream beauty norms and standards will begin to be abolished and a new wave of diversity will come into advertising. Smashing inequality, one scale at a time.

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We want you to join in!
There are multiple ways to do so:

1.) Blog about it, and share your link on The Body Love Conference Facebook. I will also share on The Militant Baker's Facebook and keep an updated roster at the end of this post

2.) Share your story on The Body Love Conference Facebook or in the comments here on this blog. Post it on our wall or post below! We want to read and share both on The Body Love Conference FB and The Militant Baker's. We want you to have a platform in which to announce your mission.


3.) Create your own image with our simple PNG overlay. Instructions on how to do so here. Post it to our wall so we can share this as well!

4.) Tweet and tag @BodyLoveConf. Hashtag the shit outta your posts with #SmashTheScale. Instagram us here

This is a resolution revolution and we want you to be part of it.


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We can't thank our incredible photographers enough: Liora K, Dominic Arizona, Danni Valdez, and Lisa Foote.
You can also purchase a 2014 Smash the Scale calendar here!

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