Off & Running
a Blog of Life on the Run


Long. Short.                 Curvy. Bumpy.               Blonde. Redhead. Brunette. Mousy. Curly.
          Tall. Small.                   Round. Flat.             Simple. Exotic.                   

We are women, but no two are alike.
       We envy others. We wish for what someone else was blessed with.
We want to be happy in our own skin,
              but we focus on our "problem areas."

My whole life I've been thin.
     Sure, roll your eyes...
         but almost 6' tall and under 100lbs is not a good look.
              Too thin in school, bumpy in the wrong places.
Teased by family and school friends for my height and lack of weight.

At 25, my metabolism changed.
      I had to learn how to run off the excess weight.
           Running caused me to crave healthy food.
                Running was also good for my emotional stability.
But I still wished for a larger chest to hide the extra bumps - my poky ribs, my middle.
I still wished for a shorter stature, lustrous hair, the ability to live without glasses.

My beautiful 12-year-old cousin was telling me about her friend at school.
       A girl on a self-prescribed food plan who fishes for compliments.
           She has taught my cousin about carbs and is grossed out by what she eats.
                 These two little girls have the same figure, but one thinks she's fat.
                                          How is this ok?
This girl is hearing this somewhere and sharing it with my cousin.
I'm not ok with this.
           My heart aches for both of them to stay young.

Yesterday I read an article about a guy
          who took a picture of a young Sikh woman at an airport
                                                           with facial hair.
He posted it on Reddit so others could tease her.
          Instead... she found it and responded.
                            And her words were peace.
This young woman was comfortable with her religious choices,
         which included not altering her body for beauty.
She was more focused on who she was and what she did,
                                                        not what she looked like.

This woman and her response hit me square in the face.
I worry that not having long hair and a flatter stomach
           will keep me from being sexy enough to find love
                   while a 12-year-old girl starts a painful journey too early
                               and a young woman is profoundly happy with her goatee.

We all want something different,
              but what can we accomplish if we just love and accept ourselves?

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The Loss of My First Love
December 21, 2015
December 2004.  Sacramento, California. Freshly divorced. Adoption day.   Your foster mom brought you over. We watched you intently. You took in
The Secrets of Letting Go
August 26, 2015
It was Valentine’s Day.  A secret day.  Today, she would marry him. At 23, she knows what she
No More Should-ing On Myself
July 7, 2015
  “If God gives such attention to the wildflowers - most of which are never even
Struggling With Purpose
June 13, 2015
The breeze blows through big open windows rustling the white drapes. The oppressive heat hasn’t fully arrived yet
As You Are. Not As You Should Be.
April 21, 2015
  Hi. My name is Melanie and I feel like a failure on a daily basis.