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Saturday, April 20
The Indiana Daily Student


COLUMN: Summer Blues: Treat your body as a vessel


Editor’s Note: This story includes mention of potentially triggering situations, such as body image issues. 

The summer sun rays bring warmth to one’s home as well as to one’s body. Having to wear layers of sweaters and beanies are no longer needed. The smell of sunscreen, getting tan and wearing shorts are back.  

However, the change of clothing style due to the warm weather brings forth less coverage. That means one’s insecurities that winter clothes covered such as scars, stretchmarks and a non “toned” body are more likely to be exposed.  

But such insecurities should not be an issue. No matter what type of body one has, our bodies are beautiful entities. Our bodies should be considered and treated more as our vessels.  

No matter the season, no matter the age, no one’s body is truly perfect. You may wish your skin was clearer, or your stomach was flatter or that your thighs didn’t touch when wearing shorts, but how far will you go to make that wish come true?  

[Related: Women Empowering Women hosts clothing drive, body positivity campaign]

Is only eating salads worth it? Is not eating at all worth it? Is wearing sweatpants and a sweatshirt when it’s 90 degrees out worth passing out due to hyperthermia? Is working out for hours and hours worth it? One’s look is not worth one’s health.  

Having clear skin and a perfectly toned body does not make you smarter, kinder or more selfless. What defines you is not what you look like — it’s how you act and treat others, as well as yourself.  

Our bodies hold vital organs that keep us living. Keeping those vital organs healthy and working properly means eating three meals a day and eating nutritious foods the best one can. It also means listening to one’s body. Rest when you’re tired and appreciate your body.  

Depriving your body from nutrients and rest can lead to serious health problems which can affect one’s livelihood. Why put your vital organs at risk just to fit into size 8 pants when you would still look beautiful wearing a size 10?  

Size numbers and your reflection in the mirror does not reflect one’s heart of gold. In this age of social media, it can be difficult to not get in your head about the way you look, but you must remember that social media can sometimes only show one side of a person’s life and may not accurately portray someone’s lifestyle.  

Your height, weight and other physical features don’t define who you are as a person. Your body is a vessel that you live in. What makes you, you, cannot be seen through physical attributes.  

Beauty is subjective. One person’s definition of beauty may be different than another person, and that person’s definition may be different from another person and so on.  

What’s important is being content and feeling beautiful with what you were born with and have grown up with. Don’t let someone else’s standards define who you are and don’t let a non-accurate portrayal of one’s life influence you.

[Related: OPINION: Fat is not a bad word]  

What’s so beautiful about each and every person is that each person is different, physically and non-physically — that’s what makes each person unique and beautiful in their own way. That’s something you don’t want to lose.  

As Oscar Wilde said, “Be yourself; everyone else is already taken.”   

Natalie Fitzgibbons (she/her) is a junior standing studying journalism with a minor in American Studies.  

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