Summer for many a times has been my least favourite season of the year. A time where people show the most amount of skin, spend maximum time outside in the supposedly hot weather and spend heaps of time on road trips and with friends.
I never really felt like this was a season I wanted or deserved growing up. Sure as a child and early teen my family would go on epic trips and I would go with my dad to a summer camp, but besides those times summer has never been that attractive to me.
I used to hate the beach. How you may ask? You are from New Zealand how does one hate the beach? Well, when one has a scarring memory as a child of almost drowning numerous occasions in one trip that is how. Also the thought of sharing skin after hitting puberty felt embarrassing to me always. I grew paranoid of sunburn and the effects it can cause after seeing many adverts about it. So I thought sitting in the shade or inside always reading a book was the best way to spend summer. To be honest it isn’t too bad a way to spend it. But wearing fluffy socks and jumpers over summer time was a ridiculous thing I began to do at a young age. Having body image problems and trying to hide in baggy clothing was definitely a go too for me which grateful I have fallen out of. Having a positive relationship with yourself is often so overlooked and can cause a great hatred to the warmer months. Colder days are easy cause you can put as many layers on as you want but those hot ones always felt to me like the days you could show off your body if you wanted too.
My thoughts about this have changed greatly. We all have differences and that is super cool, scars exist, stretch marks exist, unwanted hair exists and that’s fine. It isn’t gross or necessary to overthink despite what many tell us. Honestly we all have the thoughts of doubt but at the end of the day if you enjoy the moments and don’t overthink the look and embrace what you have the season will be a lot more joyful. Of course this is a hundred times easier to say then do. Many of us struggle with mental illnesses and eating disorders we battle with body image and anxiety and it is more than just an easy ‘chill out and relax’ moment. I just hope if you struggle over summer with anything that one day just in one small or big matter of way your mind settles down a little and lets you enjoy and embrace the greatness that is individuality and good weather.
(Of course I knew that would turn into a tangent cause i have so many feelings towards talking about mental illness, body image, anxiety and all things chemically imbalanced and downwards rolling. I shall continue with the writing from before my rant began)
After a long while of teaching myself how to love my body a lot more i’m happy to show a lot more skin and to sit in the sun for a few hours. Music festivals over summer are my ultimate favourites and I enjoy going to local outdoor events and concerts to fill the days with a happier spirit.
It’s strange though right? How we can grow up feeling so scared of the worlds reaction to ourselves that we can just hide away. I admit sometimes I do prefer staying inside and hidden over going outside and trying to embrace Summer but in general I try make the most of the warmer days and get outside a bit.
In all conclusiveness to this rant/tangent post about my relationship with summer i’d like to say be the person you want to be. Try things out, push as much as you can against negative thoughts of body image and negativity and get out there and enjoy! Be safe always in every way you can be and I hope you’re having a lovely summer New Zealand (: