Testimony Tuesday: Transformation Tuesday / by Donna Olivia Owusu-Ansah

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There is a social media phenomenon known as #transformationtuesday. Transformation Tuesday is commemorated with side-by-side photos taken months or years apart usually showing weight loss with some descriptive text about the transformation. Search the hashtag on Instagram or Facebook and you’ll find a collection of “before and after” pictures. It can be quite inspirational to see how people’s hard work and dedication yield results. Personally, it was a way to track my own progress and success. To be honest, I used to look forward to participating in Transformation Tuesday until I reached a place where I was gaining weight and not losing weight. Then the online ritual became about shame and not celebration. It left me feeling despair instead of joy.

Skkrrrrttt.... 

Comparison is an act of violence against the self.
— Iyanla Vanzant

Hold up! How could I let comparing my outward appearance from one year to the next change my mood and self-confidence so drastically? More than how, WHY would I let comparing my outward appearance change my mood and how I feel about myself as a woman? WHY??? And in 2019, I decided that I wouldn’t. I’ve been talking about self-love, body positivity and body acceptance for a few years now, but I’ve JUST arrived. Part of this is attributed to ditching the scale and learning to feel what healthy feels like. Part of this is also connected to ridding myself of comparisons with others and especially with my former self. That means no more side-by-sides praising myself for losing a few pounds or chastising myself for gaining a few pounds. discount the amazing ways God is transforming me that aren’t evident in pictures. To do so would be to make my body the most important part of my being. 

And it’s not.  

I was on to something in June 2018.

I was on to something in June 2018.

So here is my Testimony Tuesday Testimony: My truest transformation has been emotional and spiritual. If I were doing #transformationtuesday today, I would highlight the way my heart has expanded through marriage and motherhood; I’d focus on the empathy and pastoral competency I’ve gained as a hospice chaplain; I would tell you how I’ve matured as a disciple of Christ and a preacher of the Gospel; I would let you know how resilient I am making it through yet another winter season; I’d testify about how I’m leaning deeply into the will of God for my ministry even if that means waiting longer than I’d like for a door to open; And I’d shonuff share how I’ve settled into myself as a fully grown woman—body, mind, and soul. On this #transformationtuesday I am so proud of the woman I have become AND so excited for the woman God is creating me to be. And that beats any side-by-side I could collage for Instagram. But just in case a side-by-side is needed, these were taken over the last 2 weeks and I‘m feeling WHOLE ENTIRE SELF. Can’t you tell by my smile?

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On this Testimony Tuesday about #transformationtuesday what has been your greatest area of transformation?