Dimple Be Gone

“I feel like we might be in dangerous territory if we are questioning our identity due to changes to our external selves or our way of life. How fragile is my character if changing my appearance would really threaten it?”

FitnEss or FitnAss? Goals baby, we’re talking bout goals today.

I was so kerfuffled about this situation, that I felt compelled to write about it. Maybe there is something here.

I’ve been consistent. Lawwwwd, I’ve been consistent lately. And my booty game is getting stronger, better, and bad-asser. But something has happened. My booty got rounder, and it plumped. I wasn’t prepared for this, but… my favorite dimple on my big ole booty just…. went away. I’m talking vanished. Here today, gone tomorrow. You know how a pregnant woman gets to the end of term and she’s so full of baby that her belly button becomes an outie? That. Happened. To my dimple.

I want to talk to you about the reality of being a “big girl” my whole life, or at least this has been my view of myself. Along with that, the fear that ensued when I started to see transformation that I thought might threaten my “identity”. I’ve got to be honest when I say, I’m actually a little nervous to shrink. Will I recognize myself? Do other people unknowingly fear change, even when it’s the very change they have worked hard for? I questioned, “Am I subconsciously holding myself back due to the fear of change?”

I saw the dimple, or lack thereof and immediately thought, “Wait! I wanted to keep that one, that’s a quirky part of me. QUICK, does Uber Eats deliver donuts to this part of town?” Okay, so I didn’t LITERALLY think to turn to junk food and sabotage my hard work, but did I subconsciously do the equivalent of that? I found excuses the entire next week to forego the gym. A place I have come to love. Good to know it only takes a week for a dimple to come back. WHAT THE HECK, JESS?

Could our external changes or circumstances really change our character? Would my identity be threatened? What if the changes are resulting from hard work and commitment? I would think these would result in positive shifts in one’s character. Things like commitment, encouragement, discipline, exchanging happiness for real joy. Why was I having this existential crisis as a result of a vanishing “flaw”?

Let’s take a little trip back in time. Little Jessica, six years old. Do you see her? Purple Lion King pants, a Pocahontas T-shirt, the fashion sense of a goddess. When I was a little girl, my mom was my WORLD. It was a morning ritual for me to sit on the toilet lid watching her in awe while she struck model poses for me, and blow-dried her hair. “Static mommy, static!” How I believed “modeling” was called “static” we will never know, but we will forever lovingly accept. My mom had the most wicked cool, curly, afro-looking hair. It was mom, with light brown hair and a kind heart.

As always, consistent and faithfully she picked me up from daycare after work. This day was different. The woman walking towards me with open arms did not resemble my mother. She was a mommy with short, blonde, STRAIGHT HAIR. Still traumatized people, I’m still working through this… clearly.

I cried. She laughed. I wailed. She got annoyed. I told her that she was mean now and I was sure it was because of her new hair. In my six year old mind, her appearance made her a different woman. A calloused, scary mommy.

This was not the truth of course, but it was my fear and I projected it to my reality. My mom got mean when she cut her hair, is this what would happen to me if I lost weight? I had a not so holy conniption fit because I didn’t want her to be different than the woman I idolized. It threatened my comfort, the familiar face that would static for me.

I’m assuming you don’t all identify as a “big girl” nor struggle with the fear that as this changes, your character will change. But do you have anything like that in your life? A physical trait, a habit, a friendship, maybe even a way of life that you have held so close to yourself, that you have allowed it to become entangled in how you identify and view who you are? Would changing it change your character? What if it was lost or changed outside of your control? It seems I may have tied my character to my physical appearance and I have labeled my identity by a physical trait. WHAT?! I feel like we might be in dangerous territory if we are questioning our identity due to changes to our external selves or our way of life. How fragile is my character if changing my appearance would really threaten it?

I am making conscious health decisions in my life that will in fact naturally change my body and yet I subconsciously fear it. I honestly don’t think I could name any specifics to the fear, only that my body is the home for my soul, and I have made my home very comfortable. If the decorations change, I can handle that, but the structure of it? That might take some getting used to. What about the neighborhood? The external surroundings and people close to us? If they change, that might change everything. Do we give everything we’ve got towards our goal but subconsciously tell ourselves we can’t make the changes because it’s not part of the list that we hold up to measure our identity? It might challenge our comfort.

Do you identify as the weak one, the overworked businessman, the overly tired working mother? Weak decides to lift and become stronger, businessman schedules in blocks of time for his family, and momma gets a babysitter for a date night with her husband. It’s not easy to make these changes, and we work for them knowing they will better our lives, but do we fear the mourning of our old self? So much so that in some cases that we half ass our goals?

Ladies. Gentlemen. If our goals are being driven from a place of health and wellness and we are keeping our hearts and minds in check I believe that no matter how big that booty gets from all those squats, and no matter how different your new healthy lifestyle is from your old way of life, I believe you are you. Just as passionately, I believe that knowledge is power, and I hope we can be honest with ourselves and speak truth into the face of fear.

Things like; “My body was made to be active, I should do myself this favor.”

“My family is most important and time with them is a more meaningful investment than today’s tasks at work.”

“My husband and I’s relationship comes first! The kids will benefit.”

“My mommy looks different but she is still nice.”

My momma was and is still Lynner. She has the cutest short blonde hair and is more full of life than ever. I don’t know how she does it but she has loved me through all my life, every season. Even without the white girl afro. Go figure, a woman could still love after massive reconstructive hair styling. (Only kidding mom.) She’s still mom, and she’s still kind. It was merely my perception and fear that made me assume she was any different.

My dimple may be plumped but my big girl heart knows how hard I have worked to get where I am and where I’m going. I will gladly accept additions to my character through the process. Hard work. Discipline. Joy in the pain. It is a choice to change, I will not fear it, I will acknowledge it, and I will do my best to navigate it. Dimple be gone! I’m still me, batchhhh. (Sorry it just felt right.)

Let’s get after it!

Xoxo, Jess.

64 thoughts on “Dimple Be Gone

  1. This made me cry as I remember those precious days with you when you were a little girl, with the mis-matched colorful clothing, striped shirt and overalls, and the infamous “homie hoodie” lol. I loved you then and I love you so much more as I watch you transform into the beautiful woman you have become.
    Keep writing my dear, you have so much that needs to be heard! ❤😘 Mammalama (Lynner)

    Liked by 8 people

  2. Thank you for writing this post! Changes…They are always easier said than done, and they are easier to think about than actually setting our minds and sometimes our bodies, in this case, to implement the changes. I used to be very self-conscious about how I look. I still am, sometimes, but I am also learning to accept my body composition and mechanism. I have been doing CrossFit for three years and I have seen how my body changes. My legs get bigger as the muscles grow. My shoulders get wider and bulkier. These changes are not easily accepted by my Mom, but they make me happy. They make me realize that I have the capacity to be stronger and healthier to do many adventurous things – such as completing obstacle races and traveling. So, I have no regrets. Even though things people say, especially, from the ones that we love, care, and respect have a lot of influences on how we think about ourselves, I think at the end of the day, as long as we are aware that we deliberately commit to these changes to be better versions of us, we don’t give up and we don’t give in. Cheers!

    Liked by 7 people

    1. Thank you for your comment 🙂 I’m so glad the piece resonated well with you! I bet your momma will come around to seeing the joy and health your new (3 year) adventure has brought you and will begin to more than accept but begin to cheer you on. 💪🏽💪🏽💪🏽 Love that. Keep it up! Xoxo Jess

      Liked by 2 people

  3. Keep writing girl,……i loooooove this piece to bits. We shouldn’t fear the change…if it comes.we’ve got to move on to a better version of ourselves. This article is just amazing, i can keep saying this over and over again !!!!!

    Xoxo, @She Lyncy

    Liked by 4 people

  4. Beautifully said Jess! I’ve been looking at similar unconscious conversations that I have with myself. And I’ve come to the conclusion that character, like brains, has plasticity and can be grown and developed through deliberate practice in being the person we want to be.
    Thanks for the reflection!

    Liked by 5 people

  5. Jess you don’t need the dimple to be who you are. That dimple is optional! I don’t know if I have anything like that – although if someone stretched me out to six feet tomorrow I’d be alarmed and disoriented – but from now on I’m going to think of static every time i hear anything about modelling which, I mean… that’s novel.

    Liked by 5 people

  6. I love your thoughts. Being a big girl in a smaller body is weird. I know. It’s more of how people treated me. When your treated differently because of your changed size, you almost rise up to the way you are treated. I was grounded real quick. I am still the same person. Just smaller.

    Liked by 4 people

  7. Oh, Jessica, I can relate to this on so many levels. I had the exact same 6-year-old tantrum when my grey-since-he-was-30 dad dyed his hair brown and picked me up from school one day. I cried and was very angry with him, as like you, I was so sure he was a different person now. Thank God our parents love us despite this nonsense!

    I can also relate to the fear that if something about your physical appearance changes, will you change along with it? Though in my case, that wasn’t something I consciously feared — until someone said something to me. I grew up “the fat kid”. Even when I wasn’t fat, I was still bigger than the other kids, and Lord knows that children are the meanest things on the planet. I was still big when I finished high school, but I have to admit, I was quite content being the way I was. I had a nice feminine shape — just bigger, you know? That being said, I still would have loved to drop 50 lbs, no question. One day, the topic of weight came up while I was visiting my great-aunt. I told her that I was happy the way I was and wished more people could accept a person’s weight without trying to turn it into some negative quality. And she agreed, but then added with a 100% genuine smile, “Besides, if you lost a bunch of weight, you wouldn’t be Wendy anymore.”

    She honestly meant it as some sort of compliment, I think, but truly, the more I thought about what she had said, the more it felt like someone has slapped me. It had never once occurred to me that my weight had ANY bearing on who I was. And I had spent years telling myself that my weight didn’t matter to anyone who loved me. That they would see me the same way no matter the number on the scale. Now suddenly, I was petrified that maybe she was right — if I ever did lose some weight, no one would see me as Wendy anymore, and I would become this totally different person in their eyes. It actually made me quite angry that she’d planted that horrid little idea in my head, and I couldn’t get rid of it.

    A few years later (after she had died, so she never got to see me thinner), I got very sick. The one good thing that came of it is I lost nearly 60 lbs. Some of it was a result of the illness, and some is the result of me deciding to turn a negative into a positive and make a few lifestyle changes while I had a leg up. And you know what? I’m more “Wendy” now than I’ve ever been in my entire life. Like you missing your little butt-dimple, I miss having bigger boobs, yeah, of course! But the point is, whether I’m heavy or thin, have natural brown or bleached blonde hair, I’m still ME. And the only thing that can change that is my attitude: Towards life, towards others, and towards myself. You wrote: “If our goals are being driven from a place of health and wellness and we are keeping our hearts and minds in check… I believe you are you.” I could not agree more. Are there men and women out there who WOULD undergo a drastic personality change if they lost some weight? Absolutely. But they’re not being driven by a desire to better themselves and their own life. Their motivation is coming from an unhealthy desire to perhaps be better than someone else. Or to illicit a certain emotion from people who they meet. In other words, they’re not keeping their minds and hearts in check.

    Thanks, Jessica, for writing such an honest post that reminds us it’s not always about WHAT you do, but WHY you’re doing it. Stay true to yourself. Wishing you all the best!

    Liked by 5 people

  8. Being confident in your self is everything. You should be comfortable in ur own body and skin even though other people will make you uncomfortable. You did well Jess. Thanx for sharing.

    Liked by 3 people

  9. Why do we look at ourselves and we are never good enough yet God made us and he did not make rubbish.
    I am older now and realize that what people have to say about me actually means nothing to me anymore.
    The love of friends and family is my love of self.

    Liked by 4 people

  10. As a “big girl” who is starting on a “fitness journey,” I identify with this wholeheartedly. For me, it’s not as much of a physical attribute (although I’m moderately terrified of losing my boobs, which for so long have been what I perceived as my only beneficial bodily attribute). It’s more of going through the motions of the habits I have always had. Food in our society really is an expression of love – “Hey it’s your birthday, here’s a cake!” or my mom saying “Hey you’re home for the first time in a long time, let me make you your favorite comfort food” or my boyfriend “I pissed you off, here are surprise cookies and ice cream.” For me, accepting these love tokens from the people who matter the most to me is so ingrained in me, it seems like I would be an entirely different person if I didn’t have experiences like these regularly. My whole family is not skinny. Not one of us has ever, ever ordered an entree salad, and people who did were looked at as the picky, snotty person who is too good to smother in mashed potatoes with the rest of us.
    It’s not a diet, it’s a lifestyle change. But a changed lifestyle does have effects on LIFE, and on you as you experience it. But as you said, you are still you. And I am still me! So see it as a good thing and remain true to yourself. And there’s nothing wrong with an entree salad.

    Liked by 1 person

  11. So true. I gained 40 lbs promptly after marriage and have happily maintained them for 16 years. Although I say I want to lose it, I keep losing the same 5, and I just realized while reading your post… I think I’m afraid to be slim again. I was constantly cold. I hate to be cold.

    You’re right, though. I need to do what’s right for my heart and for my family (dying young won’t benefit anyone). Thanks for the nudge. 😉

    Liked by 1 person

  12. I feel this! When I first left uni & realised that it was time to reign in some of that weight, my boobs hung in there for SO LONG. Then without notice in the space of about three days, they went down almost two cup sizes! I didn’t realise how much emphasis I placed on my boobs as a positive feature! I’ve always had an hourglass figure, and they balanced out my broader shoulders. I had to go shopping & found myself telling the assistant -‘if you hear sobbing, can you bring me the A cup?’. It’s something I still struggle with as my weight fluctuates, and I sometimes need to remind myself that one day my hips will shrink to match!

    Liked by 1 person

  13. Beautiful!! Things changed as your grow!! But the lovely story reminded me of my childhood where I am missing my mother who wants fly and go home just to get a sweet hug from her family

    Liked by 1 person

  14. Thanks, Jess.
    This really gave me something to think about, and made me realize why I’ve been struggling to keep up with my diet and exercise lately. Thanks a million. ❤

    Liked by 1 person

  15. Wow. It is crazy how much we project our internal selves onto our external ones! This post was so excellent! Thanks for sharing these thoughts! I really enjoyed this read. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  16. You are so right, and I love the dimples story. I stopped going to my weights classes because I thought my thighs and butt were getting chunkier, despite everything I’d heard about using weights to get leaner, and before I knew it I was going backwards. I had still been getting stronger, fitter, more self-confident and everything else I wanted- what a fool. Back to the classes I go.
    We should not fear positive change!

    Liked by 1 person

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