I love being naked.
When I get home after a day of work, being out running errands, or just about anything that involves being outside and having to cover my bits, the clothes can’t come off fast enough. Which, as someone who actually loves fashion, garments, and trying new styles and textures, almost sounds strange. But there’s no suit better than my birthday suit.
I also like having the windows in my home open. Blinds drawn up, window panes opened to let in fresh air – it makes my home feel wonderful and fresh. Of course, open windows and nudity don’t always go hand in hand. There have been a number of times friends or the pizza boy have caught me in various stages of undress. This has usually resulted in me diving behind the nearest thing that will cover me while my boyfriend dealing with the transaction of money for pizza, or me asking a friend to avert their eyes for a moment. That’s not to say that I’m ashamed of my body, but it’s for me (and maybe one other person). The world doesn’t need to indulge in it. Which seems a wee bit hypocritical when you consider that I have the windows open – but people shouldn’t be looking anyway! At the end of the day, if they see a butt because they were peering through my window, that’s on them.
I didn’t always enjoy being naked, and it’s difficult to pinpoint the exact moment when I realized that no pants were the best pants. Though if I had to hazard a guess, I would say it began when I lost some weight in my late twenties. I’d been working desk jobs since I was twenty-three, and had embraced the dreaded “Secretary Spread,” whether I had wanted to or not. It wasn’t until I saw a photo of myself taken at a friend’s birthday from an unflattering angle that I even realized that I didn’t like how I looked. Granted, it probably had more to do with the shirt I was wearing, and the fact that I was about six beers deep at that point, but the fact remained that I didn’t like what I was seeing.
I took steps to change how I felt about my outward appearance – I began eating better, I bought clothes that fit better, and I cut beer out of my diet for about a year. I ended up losing about thirty pounds.
Now, years later, the weight has come back. While I am working toward having a more overall healthy lifestyle that includes exercise and proper diet, the weight isn’t coming off as easily as it was when I was younger. People tell me that this is just part of being in my thirties now. But, I don’t care so much about the weight now as I do about being healthy.
If anything, I embrace my naked body more now than I ever did — even if my arms are a little more fleshy, and I have a bit more of a belly than I would like to have. It seems almost contradictory that while I don’t necessarily love the way that I look, I embrace my body and the way it is in the moment. I love it because it is mine. So what if I have a bit of a belly? So what if my arms a little flabby?
That’s not to say that I don’t have days when I look in the mirror and don’t like what I see, but my body is also a reflection of the life that I’m currently living. Do I wish my tummy was a little flatter? Absolutely. Do I want to will my arms to be a little bit less flabby? You bet. But right now, it’s the best version of my life that I could possibly live. The belly is a result of all of the yummy foods that I eat – prepared lovingly by my boyfriend, or enjoyed in a new town while on exciting travels, or a couple of beers consumed with friends.
While the way my body looks isn’t necessarily my favourite version of it, it’s my current version of it, and I love it.