Friday, May 13, 2011

On Body Image





Outfit Details:
aviators - borrowed from Bobby (from 80s purple)
Lace button up - gift from Threadsence
bustier - H&M
Orly jeans - gift from Raven Denim (random fact: Kim's sister Kyla modeled for one of their lookbooks!)
Sarka platforms - Aldo
belt - thrifted
bag - gift from Coach
lipstick - Clinique Bamboo Pink 

I didn't have body image issues until I started college. Always reassuring myself that I didn't care what I looked like, I was ultimately lacking in outward confidence but credited it to inexperience and my desire to be an unassuming wallflower. That is, until at age eighteen, I discovered a boy. Seemingly out of my league, he had an intimidating dating history that surpassed most men in their thirties. The girls he dated were beautiful, thin and impossible to ignore - partly because a few of them wouldn't leave me alone (and made sure to make me feel as low as possible). When people started questioning his attraction to me, I began wondering about it myself. I was an innocent, bare faced, flat chested, size six girl with blue hair and few other distinguishing features - among his history of vixens with bangin' bodies. Despite his attraction to me, I felt inadequate.

That was when my unhealthy relationship with food and my body began. I became obsessed with what I ate and when I ate it, numbers on the scale and how my jeans fit. I was eating an extremely limited diet, killing myself to work off every calorie I consumed and barely sleeping. Though I didn't see the problem while I was in it, when I went home to visit my family, my mom was visibly upset. My newly rigid lifestyle and drastic weight loss was a shock to my family, and it was the wake-up call I needed.

It wasn't a seamless transition. I struggled to maintain my weight with a healthy diet and exercise, but without practically starving myself and working out nonstop, I couldn't keep it all off and eventually went back to a more appropriate size for my build. The reason? We're not all meant to be the same size. It took a slightly tumultuous four year relationship and a year of independence for me to realize that save for dedicating all of my time to being a skinny minnie, I am never going to be that girl and still be able to enjoy life. And that's okay. All I can do is be kind to my body, live a healthful life and work with what I've got.

I wish I could say I learned that on my own in a moment of self-discovery, but the truth is that when I let go of my past and insecurities, I opened myself up to extraordinary people who made me feel beautiful. Adequate. Maybe even exceptional. They know who they are.

This long (my apologies!) stream of consciousness isn't really in direct reference to anything, though I'll admit that lately, I've had my moments of insecurity. I guess this is just a reminder to myself that "real bodies" come in all sizes - zero, six, sixteen or otherwise. If ever you doubt yourself, remember that there is always someone who thinks you're beautiful. Adequate. Maybe even exceptional.

155 comments:

  1. An incredibly beautiufl, truthful and touching post. Thank you for sharing. Unfortunately, most women I know have suffered from a body image at some point in their lives, but when you come to a point where you accept yourself for who you are, that's the biggest blessing ever.

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  2. Great that Blogger/Blogspot is back up and running. Having said this, your style is wonderfully groovy here, Keiko Lynn! LOVE those jeans along with the platform sandals and the button-down top. Sweet outfit!

    johnbmarine.blogspot.com

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  3. So beautiful. This is something I'm sure we can all relate to. Thank you so much for sharing.

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  4. i really appreciate this. i'm curvy myself and always a little insecure about my body. Things like this always make me reevaluate my thoughts. Also when my art history teacher mentions that the Venus of Ubrino body was the coveted look not too long ago! Skinny women is a 20th century trend that we don't have to bring into the 21st century. There's something beautiful about every body type. :)

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  5. This is a seriously lovely post that I'm sure tons of girls need to hear, and I think that independent blogs in general really help with. None of us are ...okay, MOST of us, aren't models and yet whooooo caaaaares- it's a great place for anyone to express their ability to wear what makes them happy. I hope a cookie cutter standard never emerges of what a blog type should be- the variety is so refreshing@

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  6. Helena: Same here - everyone I know, even the skinniest girls have had body image issues. It's just something that everyone has to deal with at some point. Unfortunately!

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  7. Keiko, I appreciate your raw vulnerability so much. I think all women and men struggle with their bodies and its important to recognize no matter what size, that its still hard to just be comfortable in your own skin. This can also branch off into feelings of self-worth and how we perceive ourselves from the eyes of others.

    My close friends and parents are often quick to remind me that I am way too hard on myself. I don't deal with failure well. I don't deal with weight gain well. The thing is that I try so hard to hold on to this ideal picture in my head of who I want to be, that I miss being who I actually am.

    Your post just made me think about all of these things. Its a reminder that just because I may feel comfortable in my body, that I also need to be comfortable being me.

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  8. WHat an inspiring story. So many ladies, including myself struggle with body image. I'm glad you're pulling through it. You're a gorgeous girl!

    Shasie
    Live Life in Style

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  9. Keiki how lovely and beautiful of you to share this story of self discovery. You made me think about my own journey, which is important to revisit.

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  10. thank you for this post :)
    i think everyone just wants what they can't have.
    i'd love to be curvy but i'll never be
    and curvy girls all want to be skinny at some point

    so thanks for reminding us to work with and love what we have!

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  11. Alyson: It's so true that we're our own worst critics. I'm really hard on myself and have a difficult time accepting praise from people close to me without making a self deprecating joke or saying, "Thanks, but..." - something I need to work on.

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  12. Great words..very touching..indeed many girls have weigh issues or they have a problem accepting their body. I have a hard time seeing myself in a abthing suit..somehow my body isn't shaped properly. But oh well.
    I must say I really love how those jeans look on you! Gorgeous!

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  13. I always love reading your personal blog posts - its something soo many girls and guys can relate to.
    Your jeans really suit you, your legs look so long! xx

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  15. s someone who struggles with their own image and a curvy body in a straight body world, it is refreshing to hear bloggers I admire speak about their own issues.

    I have also worked retail and can tell you that the size we believe someone is and the size they actually are is often very different than our perception. Also, that everyone feel anxious and upset about the way they look.

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  16. this is such a greta post keiko. you ARE beautiful, which is why everyone loves your blog so much, and you stand out amongst so many other people. feel good about yourself, because you should!

    <3 steffy
    Steffys Pros and Cons

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  17. You channel the 1970's era beautifully in this outfit. And I'm so glad that you are content with yourself, I think you are extraordinarily beautiful and you couldn't be more perfect looking the way you are!

    www.TheFancyTeacup.com
    much love.

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  18. Thank you for posting this. As has been said already almost everyone struggles with body image issues. I think it's easy to get it in our heads that if only we looked a certain way then we would be happy--that's just not the case. I think it is extremely helpful for people like you (that is, people who are in the public eye in such a way that their appearance/fashion/make up is what they are known for)to let it be known that even the beautiful people that are looked up to also struggle with this sort of thing. I especially like what you said about us not all being meant to be the same size--and just because we aren't all size 2 doesn't mean we aren't all beautiful.

    Thank you again for posting this. Really, people need to hear this sort of thing.

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  19. What an inspirational post. I have had that same issue. I think a good portion of us have. It is so hard to see what others see in you sometimes. With women in general, I think we have this constant competitive superwoman complex. I have three kids and after my last one, I was obsessed with loosing all my baby weight. Similarly, after I had my first son (at 18), I was so confused with my body and his biological father (who has been out of the picture for about 9 years now) was a complete a-hole. He used to post pictures of swimsuit models on all the food that he didn't want me to eat to try to "help" me loose weight. In the end, the people who love you will always love you whether no matter your size. As women, it is hard to give as much weight to other wonderful attributes that we have in addition to our looks like caring, compassion, intelligence, perseverance and selflessness. Great post. Thank you.

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  20. It always surprises me when some girls admit to insecurity. You blog is one of my favorites and I never would have guessed you thought your body was any less than gorgeous. It's nice to know that someone with what I consider a "bangin' body" is just another normal girl trying to love their body a little more each day. Thanks for that.

    Coffee & Inspiration

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  21. Oh, thank you for posting this! (Long time reader, not often a commenter, btw). To be honest, this morning I stepped on the scale after avoiding it for a while, and was SO disappointed in what I saw and it has been bringing me down all day. I'm only 5 feet, so every little pound seems to make such a difference on me. It's so encouraging to read about someone who's conquered this battle!

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  22. I appreciate your honesty and openness so much. You are beautiful, Keiko, and never forget that. Healthy is the prettiest size. "Happy" and "healthy" are real and achievable, but "perfect" is not.

    Sometimes, however, we are not our only critics. We have to be aware of what we say to others. I can still remember word-for-word hurtful remarks from nearly ten years ago. A few comments can bring down statues.

    I'm so conscious of what I say regarding weight to others because I don't want anyone to have to go through what I do. Eating disorders are dark holes of secrecy, shame, fear, deceit, and delusion. Losing a pound provides a quick moment of elation before the cycle starts again. I'd love to stop and finally eat a meal without counting calories and go a day without weighing myself three times, but I don't know any other way of living. I don't know what I'd do without it. And the worst part of it? I'm worried everyone will think I'm too fat to be anorexic.

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  23. the honesty of this post is really fantastic. at some point in our lives, we come across issues of body image we would love to change. i have always been petite and became self conscious of that fact when people would make jokes telling me to "please eat a sandwich" (when in fact i have a voracious appetite)

    what i appreciate most about this point is how you highlight the importance of working with what you've got and to live healthy. i think confidence, after all is a most attractive feature!

    you're a beautiful gal miss keiko
    xo

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  24. Thank you for posting. I've been struggling lately with my weight and my looks and it's really starting to weigh me down. i'm hoping your insight is contagious and that, i too, can learn to love my body and who i am as i am.

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  25. Such beautiful words. I'm actually surprised how many bloggers, who I follow and admire for their adorable looks and impeccable style, actually have had troubles with their bodies when they were younger. I guess, although self-battles are rarely completely over, every little victory makes us stronger every time =). Keep rocking!

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  26. I'm dress size 22. Even with the craziest crash diet, I will never, ever be a size 2. My time is too precious to waste any time wishing I could be. I can make goals to be an 18, maybe a 16 or, one day, maybe a 14. But, at 5'10 with a thick build, I'm not delusional. I know my body. I love my body and all it's capabilities and limitations.
    I just want every woman to love themselves. To realize how much time they'd save if they stopped playing the game of "I'd rather look like her, than like me".
    Every time you have a negative thought about some perceived flaw you have, think about something perfect about yourself. When you get a compliment, believe it. Mentally record it for the next day you're feeling down and play it back to yourself. It's not vain to love yourself.

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  27. What a great post. I think no matter what size you are or how beautiful you are, you're bound to feel insecure at times in your life.
    Thank you for sharing this Keiko, I really felt like I could relate to your personal story. :)

    xx

    http://aprilialove.com

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  28. This is a great post. Obviously a lot of other people agree and have had similar experiences! Mine have been some what in reverse. I always worried about being too thin. I got teased an awful lot through out puberty because I went through a massive growth spurt (from about 5"6 to my current 5"10 in a matter of months) and was as tall and skinny as a bean pole! Then when I was about 18 I got really sick and lost huge amounts of weight again. I hated my body so much that I would only shower at night in the dark so I wouldn't have to look at myself! Anyway to cut a long story short I am now 28 years old and in recent months I can honestly say that for the first time since I was about 10 I am really happy with my body!
    x

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  29. This made me tear up...
    I've always had a problem with my weight.. up, down, middle.
    Being teased by people in school to the occasional remark from my brother... sometimes it just sticks with you. I've learned to slowly just accept who I am and more importantly, LOVE who I am. Nice to see a reminder other than yourself that no matter what u look like, someone thinks you're perfect. Thanks for your awesome post.

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  30. Thank you for the honesty, as a long time follower I was still surprised to read of your struggle. Sometimes it's hard to imagine that someone with your stunning beauty would deal with image issues. As a size 0, sometimes size 00, woman I will admit that there are many "curvy" bloggers that make me feel low about my own image - and I'm supposedly that skinny ideal! I guess it really does go to show that all women, and men too, deal with body image issues at some point and sometimes long term. Thank you for being a blogger who shows that beauty comes in many different forms and sizes.

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  31. Wow, great post and I love that you share about yourself with us! I relate! You look amazing and I love those pants! XOXO, www.NatalyasCloset.com

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  32. Shannon: I love you. I've always admired your confidence and general bad-a**ness. For crying out loud, we need to figure out a time and place for you, me and Lauren to meet. It will be epic!

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  33. I love love the honesty in this post. I think so many people can relate to body image issues. I had my own body image issue but they started in high school and the person that made me feel the worst about my body was my own mom. I worked through my issues and I really love my size 18 body. I found a partner that loves my body no matter what.What I'm trying to say is that your post hit the nail on the head:) Thanks for sharing!
    xo
    Gabi

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  34. Anonymous: You're absolutely right that we're not our only critics. I didn't realize there was anything wrong with me until it was pointed out. When people called me ugly, I believed it. When my ex jokingly called my arms "lunch lady arms," I stopped wearing sleeveless shirts. Even comments made in jest can have impact. I hope you get the help you need.

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  35. wonderfully open and well-written post. I very much appreciate your vulnerability with this topic and certainly can relate.
    We are always our biggest critics, making it all the more important to have loved ones around who remind us that we are exceptional. Not at everything, but at many more things than we realize.

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  36. It's also true that you can have the culturally ideal body or be skinny and still be insecure. I hate when people assume that skinny=anorexic. My mom's side of the family is naturally thin. Until she had my youngest sister, my mom was a size zero and people constantly told her she needed to gain weight. She just couldn't! Tessa also gets bombarded with questions as to whether she eats enough. It drives me nuts.

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  37. Great post. As a size zero, I would LOVE to gain weight...mainly because it would soften my face, and just give me a little more curve. Gauntness is not a pretty look. But at the same time, I do have to remind myself it's not right to drive myself crazy with that goal. Nothing redeeming comes from that. Be happy with doing your best, doing the most objectively healthy thing for yourself. Worrying about the greener grass across the fence just distracts you from nurturing what you're standing on.

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  38. So well said! Thank you for this. You are exceptional! And I love the flare of those jeans and the bustier peeking out!

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  39. I love this post!!!
    It made me so angry when certain people would distinguish myself and my twin sister as me being the "fat" one and her being skinny....when we were younger she was the bigger one and by the end of HS and start of college..she definitely grew out of it and I stayed the same and developed hips, and some "junk in my trunk" and to "those" people that equaled being fat..Im lucky that I have an incredible sister, family and close friends who love me the way I am...I love me the way I am as well but I do feel insecure sometimes when things we both like to wear dont always look as good on me ...Im only human lol
    This post was refreshing to read :)

    xoxo
    Shirley

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  40. I just finished a spaghetti and meatball dinner and the guilt was starting to sink in when I read this. It's so hard to remember in the society we live in that beauty comes from the heart, not just the body. I've wished I could be anorexic far too many times. Thank you for reminding us that loving ourselves for who we are isn't a crime, but a blessing

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  41. This is such an awesome post, Keiko! Thank you so much for sharing this about yourself!

    As a size 18/20, trust me, I've had so many different levels of insecurity (from ragingly insecure to feeling alright about myself, lol). I'm much more secure in myself now (blogging and the blogging community has actually been a huge factor of that) but can still remember how bummed out seeing all the pretty, skinny girls would make me. We're all our worst enemies in that respect, though! The best thing we can do for ourselves is be healthy and happy. That's it! :)

    xo Allison of CurvyGirlChic

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  42. You're adorable no matter what. Check out my Etsy shop ya'll, it'll make you happy! :)


    http://classycleverchic.blogspot.com

    classycleverchic.etsy.com

    Happy Friday!

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  43. Thank you so much for your honesty and candor Keiko.

    I have to say, I think it is insane that we live in a world where someone your size could consider themselves (or be considered by others to be) "curvy". Our culture's obsession with idealizing a body type that is incredibly thin means that when we say "thin" we really mean uber-skinny, and when we say "curvy", or "healthy" we're talking about women are are actually thin. Our perception of thinness has become so distorted that someone with a size 26 waist isn't considered thin! It's crazy. When I read interviews with girls like the recent one with Jennifer Lawrence for example, where she talked about body image issues, and how she's happier to be curvy and healthy than skinny, I think "Great, that's a good message, and it's great that you're happier to be healthy, but YOU ARE SKINNY." It infuriates me that people think thin means emaciated, and anything else is "healthy". Apart from the fact that you can't tell how healthy someone is by their weight, it's just such a problematic conception of what thin is in so many ways!

    Anyway, end rant. You are too freaking beautiful! So, so, so gorgeous. Glad you've come to a place of acceptance with your body!

    xo
    ZK
    www.glitter-and-ink.blogspot.com

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  44. You just said exactly what I needed to hear. I've been reading your blog for a while now and always feel so uplifted and cheerful when you post something new. So much of your personality shows through in your writing and I admire your sense of style as much as I do your sense of self. Lately, I've been obsessing over my own insecurities and really needed to hear such positivity. Thank you for doing what you do. You're gorgeous!

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  45. This is a really lovely, thoughtful post. I think every reader can relate to it on some level.

    Briggs
    http://shortsisterstyle.blogspot.com

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  46. Awesome :) Love your advocacy for self-love.

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  47. Thank you for sharing a bit of your past with us. I'm sure all of your readers, like me, are appreciative of this post.

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  48. It took me a long time to realize that people will tear each other down just because they can, and not for anything inherently wrong with anyone. I got the "there's something wrong with the way you look and you should feel bad" treatment young, but now I look at old pictures of myself and am surprised by how small I actually was. Baffling. Guess I was just an easy target.

    I'm glad you're in a place now where you're comfortable with yourself.

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  49. I loved this post. It's crazy how badly we will treat ourselves, sometimes for no good reason at all. I need to remember to appreciate my body more, and thank it for being so good to me.
    My Heart Blogged

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  50. you are beautiful, inside and out.
    but i'm sure you've reached a place where you don't have to hear it to know it.
    thank you for being open with your struggle, i'm sending love your way.

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  51. Gorgeous!

    xoxo,

    colormenana.blogspot.com

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  52. Thanks Keiko...it's true, I am pretty bad ass (this is what taking a compliment looks like...even if it's a bit immodest haha).
    But that came from having a mom who praised and teachers who supported and learning to ignore every spiteful and hurtful comment.
    Even though I'm confident, I know I have flaws. I know there's cellulite and certain cuts/colors/fits/styles just don't work for me. But knowing that actually helps...I think if every woman knew what complimented them the most (not hid them or covered them up), they would feel better and more confident in the world.
    One day I'll make it out to New York, don't worry, it's on my "Must See" list and I will *make* you take me to all the good thrift stores.

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  53. You, my dear, are one of those girls who have a bangin' body. :)

    xoxo
    Em

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  54. Thank you for being so honest. I think all of us ladies struggle with body image throughout our lives...maybe it's just the temperatures warming up & wearing fewer layers, but I've definitely been feeling moments of major insecurity lately as well, so this was great to read. And while I know you've probably reached a place where your confidence comes from within, I just have to add that I honestly think you are one of the most gorgeous girls I have ever seen!

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  55. Agreed!!!I'm in between about 3 different sizes when it comes to shopping! I tend to make a lot of my own bottoms and dresses because it's hard to find a dress that fits right when your waist is foot in diameter less than your bust and hips! I'm finally with a boy that likes me and my curves. Here's to becoming happy with who we are!

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  56. Keiko! This was beautiful! And so are you! :D

    xo,
    Cassie

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  57. keiko! i just started my new job at Club Monaco yesterday and you are one of the inspiration pictures in the product knowledge handbook :) made me so happy!

    hope you're doing well

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  58. Keiko,

    Thank you so much for posting this. It's my freshman year of college right now and that is exactly my situation. Every day is a struggle to accept my weight, because I've never been skinny, and a lot of times it's a losing battle. Thanks for the reminder that it can get better. <3

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  59. Thank you for posting such a honest entry. I have always (and still do) struggle with my body image.
    I've recently had a close friend tell me that high heels are for "super thin" girls. I was shocked! I've known this friend for a long time and he really is one of my closest friend, but I made the decision to put some distance between us.
    It's so important to surround yourself with people who support you. I don't mean coddle, but people who accept and love. Luckily I have only one friend who thinks so lowly of me and am ever grateful that I have others who support me and see me.
    Thank you again for your post. It's a great reminder to love and accept yourself. You are one of my favorite bloggers.

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  60. Exceptional. You, my dear, are exceptional!
    Preach it, girl!
    Love, Leigh

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  61. Thank you so much for posting this, Keiko.
    There needs to be more self-love and positivity out there! There doesn't seem to be nearly enough of it. But it's comforting to know that I'll always find it on your blog :)

    xx

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  62. you are absolutely gorgeous and I don't think other people on the outside of that relationship in high school really questioned why he was attracted to you (unless they were insecure teen girls). I'm glad that we've been given/created a mostly supportive place to talk about things like this. I wish more girls/women could see past what they thought was not good enough.

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  63. Keiko, this was truly an exceptional and inspiring post. I look up to you as being one of the most beautiful bloggers inside and out that I follow, and this post made me just fall in love with you even more. You always show us that you're not perfect and don't claim to be like some bloggers do. You show us your fears, insecurties, and imperfections,but you know what? It makes all of your followers love you even more.

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  64. Simply beautiful. Hits home. It's almost like poor self image is hard wired into us females. It's gut wrenching and feels like all you see is darkness when you are going thru it. You loose sight yourself yet at the same time all you can think about is yourself. Women are beautiful! Every single one of us! The key moment for me is when I realized that no matter how I felt (good or bad) about myself I was going to remain in the same body. I may as well enjoy what I've been given. Thanks for the post.

    Krista
    Lazy Saturdays

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  65. thank you so much for this post... you cannot possibly imagine how striking of a message this is for me.

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  66. That was amazing. Thank you.

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  67. Wow, thanks. I kind of needed that right now.
    (That sounds insincere, but I mean it, and in a good way!)

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  68. i adore this post keiko! you tall, supermodel lookin b****! it amazes me that someone so beautiful would ever be called ugly or feel the need to lose weight, you're stunning! that just shows me that the people or negativity surrounding us can have such an impact on our body image. if anyone ever makes you feel inadequate they need to keep it movin'..life is too short to worry about fitting into someone else's idea of perfect or beautiful! being happy and healthy in your own skin is what makes you someone to look up to..we are all unique and come in so many different shapes,sizes,colors,and styles..there is no perfect..only perfectly imperfect


    Krystle
    http://dearwinsome.blogspot.com

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  69. I just want you to know that I think you're an extraordinary, awesome person. I love when you write about more personal things; you always brighten my day with your attitude towards things. I myself struggle with my body image--I hate working out and really should probably be thankful with my lifestyle (I work from home) that I am as small as I am. But still, I was never meant to be a thing model-esque girl; I have large hips and a chest and as much as my husband tells me he loves my shape, I often feel that I would trade it to be shapeless and thin. I've gone through bouts where I eat practically nothing and exercise like crazy and then I've bounced back and done close to the opposite. I don't know if I'll ever get to the point where I'm confident enough to like the way I look, but this post made me feel a bit better about that. I think I might have to bookmark it for my own insecure days.

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  70. I love this post. Too often bloggers get caught up in the superficial and the shallow. I like your more intimate posts and hope you keep doing them! Your blog is one of the only non-animal based blogs I read because I just love how real you are and always look forward to what you have to say.

    Thanks for being so awesome! :>

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  71. I honestly think you're one of the most gorgeous people I have ever seen, so I can't believe anyone would think you are plain. But, I know we all have doubts about our looks and I think it's great to talk about accepting more than just what goes down the runway; everyone has an ideal body size for them, and that should be based on health and comfort, not on the media or public opinion.

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  72. I'm sorry, but I do not find this post inspiring because your body is still in the acceptable range of what bodies should look like, according to our society. It's easy for you as someone who, I'm sorry, is a skinny minnie, to preach this, but it's a hollow message.

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  73. you look amazing, especially in that first picture! stunning. one of the reasons i love your blog is because you are a real size, not just another size 0 dream. thanks for brightening my day. i hope someday to be half as fabulous as you. :]

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  74. i think every girl on the planet can understand everything you just admitted..
    let me assure you, i check your blog every day because i think you have great style and you are incredible to look at! you are!
    take care.
    marie

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  75. Thank you to everyone for sharing your personal stories and feelings on this.

    Anonymous: The idea that someone who fits [what you consider] a societal ideal cannot harbor insecurity is imperceptible to me. I work in the fashion industry, and yes, I'm considered to be a larger girl in comparison to my size 0/ size 2 peers. I am by no means saying I'm large - but you have to understand that it's all relative to an individual's situation and mental state. It's a shame that you're adding to the narrow-mindedness surrounding this issue.

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  76. Beautifully written :] I havent been below a size 9 since before I was 12 I think...but I've never looked horrible...Though I know I'd like to be smaller, I try to work what i've got lol Now If I can get over my cruddy looks lol

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  77. Estell: What's funny is that in my senior year of high school, I was a size 10 and had no big issues with my body. Then college came, I lost weight from stress/walking to and from campus and all of a sudden I was worried about my shape. Strange!

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  78. Tara: That is such an awesome compliment! Oddly enough, I was just on shopbop.com looking for a particular Club Monaco skirt. And it's sold out! Bummer.

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  79. This post almost made me cry. I grew up hearing every day, and still hear every day, that being "fat" is unacceptable and that no one will love you if you're not perfect. Unfortunately that voice that resonates so loudly is my own father telling my mother she is a fat cow. I'm 24 and terrified of gaining wait. I find it a daily struggle to remind myself the only important thing is to be healthy. I keep fighting with myself so that someday I accept me for me. The day where I accept and find beauty in myself and not how others perceive me. Thanks for sharing! You're inspirational!


    P.S. I love those pants and afraid to wear them because I have wide hips. :/

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  80. You look absolutely gorgeous honey! I know exactly what you mean, one of my friends literally will go for a run after every meal. I will probably get half way to her stage, but it is really scary! But sweetie you're absolutely gorgeous, and a guy with that kind of street cred isn't worth it!

    And just fyi, your pants are amazing, and those shoes are to die for!

    New giveaway on my blog, check it out! :)
    http://itsthedollhousebaby.blogspot.com/
    x

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  81. It's hard to adequately say how reassuring and wonderful posts like these are. There was no need to apologise for the length of what you wrote: I snapped up every word because I really did want to read it. I don't really have a similar fashion sense to you, but I love your blog because you are such a lovely, strong, interesting person who rarely writes anything that isn't enthralling.

    On another, more fashion-y note, you look so much like a feminine Tom Cruise in Top Gun in this post! It's kind of ridiculously awesome.

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  82. What a brave story to share. So honest and beautiful and touching.
    Congratulations. I think those reading it will be inspired. I am.

    Much love, Bailey from Vanilla Blonde

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  83. Thanks for sharing this story. It's great to read about others triumphs over insecurities, it gives one something to aspire to.

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  84. This was truly beautiful and inspiring! I can't think of a girl who hasn't had negative thoughts toward her body and, though that's sad, it always makes me happy to see someone brave tell their own tale. I feel like the more people open up on the issue, the more girls will realize they are beautiful when they're healthy and happy, not stick thin.

    Thank you so much for opening up to us! You're really my favorite blogger because of your honesty and the fact that you keep it real. =]

    xx Melina

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  85. thank you for this, i was having a bad day thinking i'm fat, but now... i'm gonna have another piece of cake and not think about it. because you're right, if my boyfriend loves the way i look, why shouldn't i? thank you. you're awesome. and you're beautiful.

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  86. What a beautiful story, and I think everyone struggles with body image at some point in their lives. Now that I'm older I'm just happy being me, but I know that people struggle funding the route to happy. It just takes time, and now at 43, I can't let anything negative take up space in my head.

    Congrats to you, and the outfit is fabulous by the way...Wyetha

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  87. Thank you for posting this, I think you are truly beautiful and am still totally kicking myself for being too shy to introduce myself to you at the Seychelles party on Wednesday!

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  88. Amen sister! Thank you for being a real inspiration to all the women out there!

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  89. I would never have guessed that you ever struggled with body image. I am just now learning to embrace what I have, even in my forties..it's a lifetime of reminding myself that I AM GOOD ENOUGH!! AND SO ARE YOU!! WE ALL ARE. Dawn Suitcase Vignettes xoxo

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  90. Thank you, Blogger, for being up and running again, and thank you, Keiko, for this post. You inspire me.

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  91. Thank you for baring your heart out here... I'd always thought you were beautiful, never realized even beautiful girls have/had their moments. I suppose it's just never productive to compare ourselves to others...

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  92. Your photos are always so beautiful!! Such an amazing blog

    www.fashionisinthebeholder.blogspot.com

    xoxo

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  93. Keiko, I think you are exceptional! {I might be slightly obsessed with you, ha!} I've always always struggled with weight issues. It consumes me every day and I hate it. I'm instantly sizing up the other girls in the room and comparing my body to theirs. Or even strangers for that matter. "hmmm...whose body most resembles mine?" It's a little sickening (and insane). I wonder where this need to be a certain size began? And why on earth did it begin?!

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  94. I love this. It is beautiful! You are beautiful! This totally made my day! Thanks for sharing!

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  95. hell yeah! Size is only a number. I used to be anorexic and everyone complimented my new skinny physique, including my family. It wasn't until my neighbor said something to me that I stopped. I feel beautiful now and am healthy size 4-6. YOU are beautiful btw (extremely)

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  96. Lady, you are looking good!

    It can be hard to know where the line blurs between a health-conscious diet and weight-related obsession.

    As long as you have a healthy sense of where you want to draw that line, you'll feel great.

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  97. Thank you for this post, so honest and vulnerable and I think so many people can relate to this. You are hands down one of the most beautiful people I've ever seen. You are just perfect the way you look!

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  98. Keiko,
    Thank you for this lovely and honest post. I just came back from a day of jeans shopping and each pair I tried on made me sink lower and lower in spirit and rose my body dissatisfaction to new levels. Now after reading this post, I realize just a waste of energy body doubts are because we all are beautiful when our hearts our open and we allow our beauty to be.

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  99. I'm an 8/10-ish size, and average height, so I don't really fit into what most mainstream people consider to be conventionally attractive (aside from the natural platinum blonde, but that's different). I have a lot of trouble with that, and one of the reasons I've held back on starting my own blog in ernest is because I can't stand to see how I look in photographs. Last week, though, a beautiful (in every way) boy who I have known for ten years and whose opinion I value told me, after days of heartfelt conversation and catching up, that he thinks I'm beautiful. You shouldn't need another person to tell you that, but when it's someone like this, you really believe them. I've felt beautiful ever since, and I hope I continue to remember that if he sees that when he looks at me, then it must be true.

    I always feel better to read or hear about other people's struggles with body image. Some see it as complaining, some kind of stereotypical feminine plea for attention or compliments, but the fact is that we need to explore this and talk openly about it to ever be able to get past it, and we need to connect with others who have had similar issues. I also had a year of not eating in college, but my family told me how "great" I looked. That was hard to get past, because I was convinced I was doing the right thing. I'm glad you had your mom to help you. And you are seriously one of the prettiest people ever (not that it's a contest).

    Also I love your bell bottoms.

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  100. Keiko- I'm so relieved that you wrote that women come in all different sizes including zero. I'm so sick of hearing "real women have curves" and "curvy girls are better". I have a boyish figure and I'm hispanic (half mexican half puerto rican) so I'm not the norm of my culture. Growing up I always thought I'd be very voluptuous and I've gotten a lot of negative comments because I'm not. It's also so infuriating when someone tells me I should "eat something" or I need some more meat on my bones. It's hurtful. I think we all need to stop saying any one type of body is better than another. We are all women, all beautiful, let's love ourselves and each other.

    Thank you for being such an inspiration!

    Lidi @ Eclectic Flair

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  101. great post,eating healthy--taking care of our mind,body and soul,loving and accepting ourself for who we are is the most essential part of our well-being,your a very intelligent and beautiful woman and I love your blog xox

    www.nancytoussaint.org

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  102. I would have never thought that you would have ever felt like that.
    I come to your blog daily and really love the pictures of you.
    I think you are gorgeous inside and out.
    I wish I had your style, not to mention your hair.
    I wish I could replicate your updo.

    Thank you for being so truthful.
    I think we all feel like that until we find our sense of style and are comfortable with ourselves.

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  103. what a beautiful post and beautiful photos to match. you ARE exceptional.

    Kristy Eléna - Full Time Fabulous
    Vogue Gone Rogue
    Twitter: @kristyelena

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  104. thanks for sharing this! i think most girls go through a period of time judging their bodies - myself included - so its always nice to hear that youre not the only one who feels that way sometimes.

    it's true that everyone is their own worst critic and we see ourselves in a different light than our friends, family and even strangers!

    i appreciate that you, and many other ladies out there in the blogging world, are not all 6 feet tall and 120 lbs! you look great and should feel great too!

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  105. Um, I already tweeted you about what I think, but just to reiterate -- I think you're amazing. And I plan on sharing this with others.

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  106. Wow. Thanks for sharing! Your story is unbelievably similar to mine. I have come out of the "skinny minnie" stage, but it is difficult sometimes because I did finally fit into those model skinny clothes, and I was too proud of that. However, my happiness and sanity are worth a billion times more than being able to fit into a size 2.

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  107. Beautiful post. Thank you for sharing this! It's sad that we are bombarded with all these images of the "perfect" body type and are brainwashed into thinking that if you don't fit that type that there is somehow something wrong with you. I too still feel like that bare faced, flat chested girl at times, and have struggled to get to a place where I can truly be happy with my body as it naturally is. It's so important to share stories like this, and I commend you for sharing yours. <3

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  108. You always have the most beautiful and thoughtful posts. This is why I really love your blog-because at the end of the day its not JUST about the pretty clothes and shoes. It's about, well, life.

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  109. But you are so gorgeous! Makes me sad to think that you ever doubted this about yourself.
    It's such a shame we can't see ourselves they way everyone else does, or apply the same compliments to ourselves that we give to each other.
    :)


    renewvintage.blogspot

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  110. This post really hits home...I've had a few moments of insecurity lately as well. Some moments more frequent and longer than I would like.

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  111. I recently found your blog a few months ago and truly look forward to all of your posts. We need more women out there like you. Women who love how they look and find confidence in what they project to others. I wish I could be one of these women, but unfortunately, I am not there; not yet anyway. Having been made fun of viciously in middle school, confidence in who I am - exactly how I am has been a life long struggle. Thank you for your honesty, and thank you for being such a great example.

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  112. Wow. Thank you so much for sharing this.

    It was really encouraging.

    Laurren

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  113. I love this post. I can relate in so many ways, but really I just want to say these are lessons I think we just keep having to teach ourselves so bravo for teaching yourself again.

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  114. girl! with that face you could be ANY size!

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  115. I'm a personal trainer who focuses on women's weight loss & I can't tell you how many times I hear ladies putting their bodies down. They can be so hard on themselves. Kudos to you for writing this post and being so honest about your feelings. And kudos to you for embracing your beauty.

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  116. love this outfit! how cute! just found your blog, and i'm loving it!
    Xo

    http://ericplustanya.blogspot.com

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  117. I love this look! I have all these pieces but just wouldn't think to put them together!

    Thanks
    Katelyn

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  118. thank you for that stream of consciousness. just what i needed to read.

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  119. that was beautiful and definitely something people need to think about we all have our insecurities and i think you look amazing and have a great body!

    http://kc-citystyle.blogspot.com/

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  120. what an inspirational post! Keiko, you are completely gorgeous - and im sure you hear that a hundred times a day, but it never hurts to say it again :) I really do hope that when you say "they know who they are" you mean all your followers and fans because I can't think of a more adoring group of people who find you stunningly amazing... and amazingly stunning. Thanks for such a great post. I've always felt that i'm just a bit toooo... everything. but who cares? we're all beautiful, lets embrace it :)

    -Winnie
    http://winniereally.blogspot.com

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  121. Wonderful post on self-acceptance. I had exactly the same experience a very long time ago with a man. It's so sad that our younger selves can be influenced by our attraction to a man when he actually accepted us as we were in the first place! We do it to ourselves. So glad to hear you are free of that self-imposed prison and it goes without saying that you look amazing.

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  122. That was SO beautifully written and despite your apologies, rather amazingly succinct.
    Thank you. I'll be checking back to this post when I need a self-confidence boost.

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  123. Would it be shallow to ask what size are you?

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  124. You are absolutely gorgeous! And so sweet! I think it is important to enjoy what you are wearing - knowing it flatters your best features. And you do that! I would love to be as tiny as you are but I have to embrace where I am at this moment in time and find ways to dress my figure as it is now. The time will come when I will be able to slink back into some old jeans but it's nice to take pride in the way you look in the meantime.
    You always look fab!

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  125. I accept your absolutely unnecessary apology for writing a well constructed, insightful and intimate bit of prose. You really should needlessly apologize more for actually writing on a blog.

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  126. thanks so much for your beautiful writing, it's definitely something we can all relate to. and so refreshing to for a girl as stunning as you to be so honest and open about past insecurities.
    ps you look fab as always.
    x

    fromblank.blogspot.com

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  127. This was really touching. It meant a lot, especially because it hit so close to home. <3 you Keiko

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  128. This post is beautifully written. Thank you for sharing.

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  129. I have never commented on your blog even though I read it pretty religiously and love it to pieces. But today, this post made me blubber like a baby and I'm 32!! I still haven't learned what you've learned and feel inadequate in some way daily. You're amazing and beautiful and I'm so glad you posted this.

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  130. I just discovered your blog (adore it!) and was going through the archives and this post really resonates with me. It is really inspiring to hear that these issues can be overcome. After I fractured my leg my freshman year of high school I fell into some awful habits and gained a significant amount of weight. With this weight gain came torment from my peers, and a nasty downward spiral of my self esteem. I'd wear large sweatshirts and coats during class to hide myself, and developed both anorexia and exercise bulimia. I dropped to such a low weight I even stopped menstruating (sorry for TMI) but even at that point I still felt and saw fat. Since then its been a 4 year struggle to overcome the disorder (I fall back into it occasionally) and am also a healthy size six. I have a boyfriend that absolutely loves my body, even though I have a lot of junk in the trunk. But I still can't seem to fight off the insecurity and will prevent him from going near anywhere I deem "fat". Its so tiring. But, thank you for the renewed hope that body acceptance and happiness is a possibility. (and sorry for the long comment!! i dont really talk about this to anyone)
    Thank you for sharing, and never feel less than what you are-beautiful.

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  131. Thank You for posting that! Tears welled up towards the end.
    I've always had body issues and didn't realize it. I was always thin, not skinny but living in Harlem,NY I was too thin for guys to look at. They wanted the shapely chicks from around the way. Fast forward 12 years. Married 3 kids later, now I'm TOO BIG (for me) Although my husband is a sweet heart about it, my weight bothers me. Our son's 1 year birthday is coming up, and I am not looking forward to this summer, because I can't fit anything right now. I enjoy reading fashion blogs I get ideas from you all and just go to Plus size stores and put my spin on it. Thank u Keiko for posting that.

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  132. What a beautiful post. I just got into your blog, but I'm so glad to have found this post. You read so many blogs and think people's lives are absolutely perfect because the photos they post are. It's nice to know everyone has their "stuff" and great that you feel comfortable sharing it. I'm a size 12 and at my skinniest was an 8. I like how I look and could stand to lose a little weight, but not for any other reason than my long term health/knees. There's a lot of power in owning who you are and all that comes with you.

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  133. You are one ofhe most beautiful girls i have ever seen and it makes me feel better about my insecurities to know that someone like you has those same feelings. Thank you!

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  134. All young girls struggle with their image of self. I went through the anorexia thing in high school, weighed 103 pounds yet looked in the mirror and saw fat, fat, fat.

    Now that I am an old lady of 56, I must say, you girls can relax. All young people are beautiful.

    And these days, I weigh 160, look in the mirror and say, "Hey, not bad!"

    --Veronica

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  135. Thank you for posting this! I read it because Elsie posted it on http://abeautifulmess.typepad.com/my_weblog/

    I've struggled with eating disorders and self-confidence for years. My husband is wonderful at making me feel exceptional, but being pregnant with our first child brought back a lot of insecurities with my body constantly changing shape and being consciously aware of how much and how frequently I eat. Thank you for this little blog pick-me up! A smile is the best accessory!

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  136. Great post, and so true. The people I admire the most are all different shapes and sizes, and I think everyone of them is beautiful.

    xx

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  137. Extremely moving!

    Thanks so much for sharing your experience. I have a weight struggle. I come to the realisation, if I hate my body I will just get fatter and fatter because I can't look after something I hate. Then I learn to love myself, I look after myself better however I am still a big girl yet beautiful!

    <3

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  138. Hi - here via A Beautiful Mess. :) When she wrote that you had done a great post on body image, I had to rush right over and am glad I did.

    The blog I have with my best friend has one purpose achieved many ways: building self-love. I started learning to love myself more before we started our project and have grown to love myself even more as we've gone along. It saddens me that more women and girls have such low opinions of themselves and their bodies, and that is something we're hoping to change little by little. It's the whole reason we began our blog.

    Thank you for being open and vulnerable enough to do this post. You just never know who it will help!

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  139. anonymous: I'm generally a size 6.

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  140. Jenarcissist: Thanks for checking out the post! I think it's something most women struggle with at some point in their life; I just hope we can learn to start treating ourselves with the respect we deserve.

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  141. Katrina: That's so true. I'm the same way. When I feel better about myself, I am kinder to my body. When I'm feeling ugly or overweight, I give up. It's a vicious cycle.

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  142. Amy: We are always so hard on ourselves. Bobby is constantly telling me how beautiful I am and I'll look at him like he's crazy. I wish we could just accept the compliments and believe them. Working on it!

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  143. Thank you Keiko. This helped a lot. x

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  144. Hi Keiko :) I'm glad that you used your position as a prominent blogger to address such an important topic. Everyone must battle their own body insecurities at some point, but it's so important to realize that all bodies are different and that we shouldn't want to be like someone else: We should strive to be the healthiest and happiest versions of ourselves. I had a difficult relationship with my body and food when I was in high school so I strongly identified with this post. Thank you for sharing :)

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  145. Great post (found it through Elsie's blog)! Most women are not meant to be a size 0 - our bones aren't built in the right shape to be that small without being unhealthy. I think some softness is beautiful, and being healthy and confident is so much more important than a number.

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  146. Thank you, Keiko, that was remarkably well said! It's exactly what every girl whose been in that position needs to hear, and I'm definitely going to link to this from my own blog. I may only have one subscriber, but I hope it affects them the way it affected me! There will always be people who make you feel like you're not good enough the way you are, and I'm afraid I'm not yet perhaps that that point where it really doesn't matter to me... but I'm seventeen. I'll get there. I've got time. :)

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  147. So beautiful Keiko! I love this - thank you for your honesty!

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  148. Thank you for sharing! It was beautifully said. I can definitely relate... a little too much but I really appreciate you sharing this!

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  149. Keiko, I just found your blog today, and I love everything about it. I've learned that I share three things in common with you: side swept bangs, a deep and meaningful love for pandas, and body image issues. It is so refreshing to see a fashion blogger with incredible/unique style and a body shape that closely resembles mine. I love how a lot of these comments have mentioned being surprised by your insecurities because of your beauty and fearless fashion sense- it just goes to show that anyone, no matter how gorgeous and seemingly confident, can question their own beauty in this world. I don't know you, but was so proud of you for revealing such a vulnerable aspect of yourself.. an aspect that I believe everyone can relate to. I know I do. Thank you :)
    -Lindsay (indigo-meets-violet.blogspot.com)

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  150. you're one of the most beautiful girls i've ever seen...it's hard to believe that you ever felt so down about your looks. it's really nice how open you are about it, though.own it, girl...you're gorgeous = ]

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