It feels like I spent forever hating my linebacker shoulders, wide like my fathers, broader then guys that I know, size one million in blazers and size "Mens section" in flannels. My "friend" once told me that I looked like a huge lumberjack when we were 15 and I was trying to look nice. It didn't help that my shoulders were bigger then her hips.
Its been a decade since I realized I was bigger, since a picture of me was taken from behind and I saw just how wide I looked. How not feminine my frame was.
Its been a lifetimes since I realized that I take up more space then people deem women should.
But last night I went to the gym and got on the treadmill for my warm up cardio. The windows in front of me reveled the darkness and my reflection in a tank. Wide shoulders, strong strides, calm breathing.
And I looked fucking strong.
For 3 miles I stared at my shoulders, the things I thought no boy would want to try to sling his arm around when I was a teen; and I loved every part about them.
I loved how they moved with my strides, ever increasing as my workout went on. I loved looking at them and remembering that those shoulders bulldozed people in rugby. Those shoulders led me to being captain, to hitting hard, to loving a sport that embraces the strong, not just the slim.
I stared at them and realized they can piggy back any one of my friends, and have on many drunk occasions. They help me lift kids and spin them around to make them giggle when they are sad, to keep them still when they are having a tantrum.
I look at my wide shoulders and strong back and totally see the linebacker my Dad use to be and now I can love the connection.
This morning I stared at my shoulders as I got dressed. And it felt so fucking nice to smile as I looked in the mirror. Embracing your body feels so much nicer then hating it.