I hear you, you are seen, and you are loved for more than what you see in that mirror in front of you.

I wish there was a magic button that I could press that would take away all of your insecurities, and instead fill that beautiful head of yours with a sense of gratitude for the one body that you were given. One strong, beautiful body.

I pray one day you can look in the mirror and say, “Dang. I look good! Thanks for my beautiful body, God!” And that day will come. I promise. Maybe tomorrow. Maybe years from now. But it will come. It can come. I know it to be true.

You are not alone.

I, too, have spent many shopping trips in the fitting room crying. I had spent years at war with my body, struggling with an eating disorder and body dysmorphia. Until six months ago and my third round of treatment, every waking hour of my life was filled with insecurity regarding my body. My one, beautiful body. Words cannot describe the pain and suffering that comes with struggling with an eating disorder. Choosing to live a life of recovery is a choice that needs to be made every single day. Every day. And I think the same can be true for us when we face each new day in the one body we were each given. We have to choose over and over again to love it, flaws and all until it is no longer a choice and more so a fact that we believe to be true for ourselves.

I wish so much that I would have knocked on your fitting room door to tell you all of this in person, and give you a hug so big that you would be filled with peace and reassurance, somehow knowing in your heart of hearts that everything is going to be okay.

You see, we were never created to alter our bodies to fit the clothes we so desire for our bodies to fit in. I encourage you to find items that make you feel good! Because honestly, that is all that matters. And just like a scale, a mirror cannot show you how beautiful your heart is or how incandescently loved you are or how brave and strong you are for simply being a human in this society.

Beautiful girl, you don’t need to change yourself to fit the picture that is inside of your head. You were created to be set apart, different from those around you. You were created to be you. Nobody else could be just like you. That is pretty special. I pray that you someday know how special you are. You are a precious gem. A treasure.

Every body is beautiful. Whether we are a size small or extra large, our bodies are still a temple, a masterpiece of our God. We can learn to see and treat them as just that. It takes time.

I pray that the next time you go to try on a new dress or a pair of jeans that you first take a look in the mirror, smile, and remember that you have one body with a beautiful soul and that no article of clothing could make your heart more beautiful or your soul more kind. Because it is what is on the inside that matters.

My heart was with you on the other side of that paper-thin wall, aching for you and praying for freedom to enter your mind, body, and soul. Just like it has for me.

“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

Hugs.