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What People Don't Tell You About Living on an Island...

I’m a tristate area girl. I was born in New York, grew up in New Jersey, and went to college in Pennsylvania (EU I miss you✌🏻). After college I made my way down to Hilton Head Island, South Carolina, where I have now lived for a year and a half. It’s gorgeous, absolutely gorgeous. I am eternally grateful for being able to live here and meet some of the best humans I get to call friends.
I moved in May, which is right before prime vacation season hits here. Summer in Hilton Head is booming and has so much energy. When I first felt the energy I let it take me places I probably wouldn't have gone, good and bad (that's a story for another time).
It’s beach weather 8 months out of the year. This is awesome right? Not for someone with body image issues and struggling with SIBO and other gut issues. Summer 2017 I was almost always on the beach with my new friends. Unfortunately a lot of my focus was on my body image, and it didn't allow me to fully enjoy the sand, ocean, and laughs with friends. Which if you didn’t know, no one cares and no one is focused on your stomach or whatever your made up flaw is. Fast forward a year, Summer 2018, I was spotted on the beach maybe four times.... I had gut issues, major bloating, gained 15 pounds from SIBO and other health issues. I was a MESS.
I love the beach, but wanted nothing to do with it at that time because who wants to be in a bathing suit when they look six months pregnant and certainly aren’t. It made me upset to see all these girls with “perfect” bodies, while I was feeling so sick and bloated, so I never went. I put perfect in quotations because what is perfect? Is perfect the tiny bodies posted all over social media? Is it the girl who has the perfect smile or the guy that has the perfect body? No its not because guess what everyone has their own struggles. There is no perfect. However, there is you and you are AWESOME.
Lets fast forward to today almost Summer 2019 and I have a totally different outlook on life. I wish I could talk to that girl in college that thought the way her body looked was her life, and that girl last summer that cried so much because she didn’t want to put on a bathing suit or anything that wasn’t sweatpants. I really wish I could hug her and tell her it’s okay, you will feel better, and if you don’t accept where you are now and how you feel in the present you never will be happy. Cause let’s face it no matter how we look we will stand in front of the mirror and say to ourselves “well I could have a little less of that or a little more of that”. I challenge you to look at yourself in the mirror and not think anything negative. This is SO hard for so many people, I know it is for me. Don’t grab your arm, your leg or that extra junk you have on your butt. Don’t press on your legs where there is cellulite. Love it because that is your healthy skin that protects you everyday.
xo,
Kristen
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