A note to my little sister, my body confidence role model

To my little sister: Not only do I think you to be funny, smart and beautiful in all manner of ways as any big sister really should, I can promise you now, you will always be one my number one role model.

The main reason that I wrote this is to say thank you. It is no big secret that I have a very complex relationship with food, and body confidence is something I have in the past struggled with. It’s your prom coming up in a couple of months, and despite the fact you are making me feel like a grandma right now, since mine feels so long ago. I could not be any prouder of you. For me, I now associate my own prom with the first time I found myself restricting my eating for long intervals. You have to make me the promise that you will never ever do the same.

I just love how comfortable you are in your own skin. You don’t care what anybody else thinks. You don’t care about Barbie girl images plastered all over the internet, television and magazines. You don’t let a little bit of exam stress completely and utterly change your eating habits. You just be you; and that is why I admire you.

As you’re getting older, almost 16, you’re developing into a very independent young lady. Your sassy feminist opinions absolutely amaze me at times: I was 100% not as tuned in to feminism when I was your age, but looking back I really really do wish that hadn’t been the case. Don’t get me wrong: You’re not always right. But you know and understand that the biggest priority for any woman (or man) is always to believe in themselves. This I love. For me, it was different. I began to pay too much attention to what was going on around me rather than choosing to focus on who I am.

My perceptions of the world turned out to be pretty flawed. Obsessing over my weight has been a central part of my life for the past six or seven years, so it makes me so wonderfully happy to see you, my little baby sister focus your energy on the things that truly matter. Thank you for being the cooler, more intelligent and more self-confident version of myself.

I can’t wait to see you on the date of your prom, working that chic ball gown of yours, leaving school to move into the next stage of your wonderful life. You’ll always be my favorite prom queen! As you move towards college, promise me that you won’t change your free-spirit, carefree attitude to what those around you think and how many slices of pizza you decide to eat. You’re wonderful the way you are.

[Image via Shutterstock]

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