“Wobbly,” “imperfect,” “stumpy,” “short,” “frumpy,” “disgusting.”
Those are some of the responses Taryn Brumfitt received when she asked 100 women to describe their bodies in one word.
For that reason, Brumfitt is on a mission to convince every woman to love her body as it is, to stop buying into corporate messages about beauty, and to change the vocabulary listed above for good. She plans to do so by creating a documentary called “EMBRACE,” that will explore why body loathing is so commonplace and what we can do to change that reality.
Brumfitt, a photographer and mom of three from Adelaide, AU, once hated her body. In the video for her KickStarter campaign, she talks about how she would stare in the mirror and tell herself how fat, ugly, and disgusting she was. In early 2013, she was considering a boob job and a tummy tuck when she had an epiphany, which she later wrote about on her website, BodyImageMovement.com. Brumfitt thought to herself:
How am I ever going to teach Mikaela to love her body as it is if her Mummy can’t do the same? How am I ever going to encourage her to accept and love the parts of her body that she doesn’t like without being a walking contradiction?
In that moment, Brumfitt decided not to go through with surgery, and instead, she would learn to love what she saw in the mirror without changing a thing.
In a HuffPost blog post, Brumfitt admitted that the journey from body hater to body lover was not easy. “It’s taken a lot of effort, time and energy but I can tell you there is nothing better than a.) loving your body wholeheartedly, lumps and bumps and all and b.) telling society where they can shove their ideals of beauty,” she wrote.
In May 2013, Brumfitt posted a “before and after” photo on Facebook that received more than 3 million “likes” — but this side-by-side wasn’t showing off a flat stomach post-weight loss. The “before” shot was from when she was in a body building contest, and the “after” was post birth. In the video, Brumfitt explains why she thinks the photo got so much attention. “Because heaven forbid a woman can love her body, after,” she said.