Kevin Mazur/Getty Images for Clara Lionel Foundation
Brooklyn White
September 21, 2017 2:02 pm

My body is my home. It is one of the only things that is truly mine in this world. I’m becoming more aware of that fact everyday. I have not always treated my body kindly. I’m still learning about the intricacies of love for oneself — but I’m getting there, one millisecond at a time.

I remember when, last year, I had lunch with a guy. I was eating vegan cheesecake for the first time and, man, it was good. I was also about 130 pounds soaking wet.

I had dealt with weight issues and disordered eating before, but had made it to a balanced, healthy place with my body.

My dining companion, however, was not knowledgeable — and ultimately, less respectful — of my growth. He told me that I was eating too fast, that I needed to slow down because I was “indulging myself.” In retrospect, my caloric intake for the day was pretty low and I had a busy night ahead, so I needed every bit of energy I could consume.

That shouldn’t even matter, though. Regardless, he said what he said — and it stayed with me.

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I dieted and fasted furiously in the following months.

I’d never been so small before, but I thought I was doing what was necessary to keep myself out of a state of indulgence. It was emotionally and physically taxing.

Six months later, I moved back to New York, excited to laser-focus in on my career. Although I wasn’t fully prepared for the move financially, I internally felt like I was ready for anything.

But life got hard, fast.

I was constantly stressed out and my weight reflected my radical moods. The time period was scary, but I kept moving with the current of life. I didn’t have time to wallow in a rut over my sense of self. Capitalism literally would not allow it.

Months passed. I stopped paying so much attention to my body image because I had too many other things to do, and my body just did her thing as I entered a new phase of my adulthood — giving me curves where they hadn’t been before.

I was virtually clueless about my new form though, and didn’t know exactly how to exist in this state.

#THICKANNA 😍😍😍

A post shared by ƦOBƳƝ ƦƖӇAƝƝA ƑЄƝƬƳ (@picturesofqueenriri) on

Soon, pictures of Rihanna began to circulate on the internet. Social media users began lovingly hashtagging photos of the singer with #Thickanna.

Rihanna appeared to have gained weight, she was working on several new projects, and she was looking joyful.

Around the same time, Beyoncé revealed her postpartum physique; her face was more full and she was curvier than ever!!

A post shared by Beyoncé (@beyonce) on

In my heart of hearts, I was hype over the popular photos because of the representation — but a small part of me was still doubtful of the images’ impact. I thought to myself, “Hmm, they’re superstars…OF COURSE they look good no matter what.” Admittedly, my thinking wasn’t where it needed to be just yet.

But I kept seeing more photos and videos of Bey and Rih, and it clicked — I didn’t have be afraid and critical of my figure anymore.

My body is something to celebrate — not a flesh prison to fear. Beyoncé and Rihanna are not people I need to compare myself to, but rather women who stand in thick body-solidarity with me! Witnessing them enjoy their frames can be fuel to love myself; it doesn’t have to send me spiraling deeper into self criticism.

Now, I love my body more than I ever have.

Brooklyn White/HelloGiggles

I am constantly in awe of all the things my body is capable of. I’m happy that Beyoncé and Rihanna are out here flaunting their forms, and I hope they continue to do so — it’s inspiring.

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