What I Believe About Eating Clean

I'm really glad there isn't a lie detector machine at my doctor's office. Because when she asked me if I "ate clean" I'm fairly confident I let the word "Yes" slip out of my mouth. Of course, as long as tortilla chips, Velveeta dip, street tacos, and M&Ms are clean. I told the truth. Alas, in my mind I seem to quantify my occassional spinach salad or fruit smoothie as how I eat all the time. Yes, I try to watch my diet. Yet I love chocolate more than I love kale. Therein lies my struggle. I know that food is medicine. I know that the better I feed my body, the better I will feel. I know that I don't ...

Life is Worth the Weight: Body Image and Pregnancy

As little girls we spend time planning our fairy tale lives: our lavish weddings, our extravagant dream homes, the perfect husband (who will always be romantic) and the number of children we will have. What we don’t spend time planning is dealing with the stress of putting together a wedding, paying for our dream home, the unexpected hurts that come with marriage, or the days when all those wonderful children you planned walk in the door covered in mud and proceed to walk all over the floor you just mopped. We anticipate the pleasure, not the pain. The same goes with dealing with pregnancy and body image issues. No one expects to worry about the way their ...

His Work or Mine: Lessons from Harvest

Harvest. I found myself thinking of all the agrarian references in the Bible as I was harvesting today, and also about parenting. The thing is, I didn't make these delicious things grow. I did not make them. They spring from the earth by the mysterious complexities of God's sustaining law in the universe. My job as a beginning gardener is to learn over time about the nature of each plant, to place it wisely in accordance with its nature, and to guard against and remove obstacles to its growth. Then my job is to harvest and recreate an artifact (a meal) with the plants he provides, and serve with what he gives. Sometimes I do everything right ...

Summer Body Image Survival Guide!

I love summer. The sunshine. Getting tan. The chance to unwind and relax by the pool. But, then, I hate summer. The pressure to wear shorts or swimsuits to every social engagement. The reminder that my body doesn't match our culture's definition of perfection. The messages from the media that remind me I should be dieting or exercising so I can have a "bikini body." Ugh. It's a tiring roller coaster to ride--the ups and downs of body image woe. Summer can steal your joy if you let body image consume you. And, it's a total shame. The one season of the year when we should be able to relax, absorb some Vitamin D, and float around on the water ...

Are You An Attention Seeker?

“Just one minute!” I yell out to my husband for what feels like the thirtieth time. There I stand, in front of the full length mirror in my bathroom. One last assessment of how I look before we can leave. I have to make sure I look the part I’m about to play. As we walk into the room--filled with a nice mix of acquaintances and strangers--the anxiety and insecurity starts to rise. But, I can’t let it show. I must put on my smile and provide happiness and entertainment for everyone I come into contact with. I have to appear strong and confident, sure of myself. Sometimes, it almost feels like I’m watching myself from afar. I can ...

Confession a Real (Thick-Thighed) Swimsuit Model

Hi. My name is Heather and I'm a real swimsuit model. Thick thighs, post-baby flab, deflated nursing boobs and all. Of course I'm not the kind featured in Sports Illustrated. You'll never see me in a suntan lotion ad or on a billboard holding a summer-y beverage. My modeling role isn't formal. (Trust me, no one will ever pay to take pictures of me frolicking in the surf.) I'm more of an "amateur" swimsuit model. My job is not to look perfect. Quite the opposite in fact. But, I'd say my type of modeling career has a far greater purpose. I must show my children what a real woman looks like so that they won't be swindled ...

Let’s Get Real About Marriage

As required reading for pre-marital counseling, my soon-to-be-husband and I read the book, "Sacred Marriage" by Gary Thomas. One of Gary's main principles explains that the purpose of marriage is to make us holy, not happy. (Okay, it's also the subtitle!) As an engaged woman, that statement grated on every fabric of my being. All of my hopes and dreams were months away from coming true. Muttering "I do!" would be the key to my life's fulfillment. How dare this author imply that marriage wouldn't make me happy! How dare he suggest that marriage would squeeze out the worst in me! How dare he presume there was still sin in my heart that needed to be ...

New Here? Check out these videos!

We're taking a little holiday break from regular blogging. But I wanted to give a big shout out to the more than 1,000 subscribers we've added in the last few months. Thank you! I am so glad you've decided to be a part of what Compared to Who is doing! If you want to know more about what Compared to Who? is really all about then take a minute to watch these videos. They'll tell you more about the site and some of what we believe about finding true freedom from body image and comparison issues. Check them all out here. 

Finding Joy While You Wait

Have you heard the saying, "Nothing tastes as good as skinny feels"? I really hate that saying. Partially because, to me, everything tastes good. And, second, because it lads to the impression that skinniness equals happiness. Are naturally thin people just bouncing around with an endless amount of joy, because they fall into a worldly definition of "skinny"? It conflicts with everything the Bible says to be true. Over the past few years, God’s done a number on my heart. You see, weight maintenance has never been a strength of mine. I tend to yo-yo around and for far too long, fell into assumption that my self-worth was somehow tied to a number on the scale or the ...