This Influencer with Ulcerative Colitis Is Proving that All Bodies Are "Summer Ready" In a Way You Haven't Seen Before

“I know for a fact it isn’t a body with a stoma that people are talking about. If I were to follow societies expectations my body wouldn’t ever be ready for anything.”

Rebekah Wilson - every body is a bikini body IG post
Photo: Beck - Instagram

While summer may still be weeks away, the (unnecessary) societal pressure to be "beach ready" has been mounting for decades. The idea that only certain shapes and sizess can wear a bikini has permeated mainstream beauty ideals for far too long, and now, one influencer is shutting that down.

Rebekah Wilkinson is the Cheshire, U.K.-based influencer behind the Instagram account @thebaglifeofbeck, where she gives her 30k followers an intimiate look into life with ulcerative colitis (among other things too, of course). A form of inflammatory bowel disease, ulcerative colitis is an autoimmune disorder that causes ulcers and inflammation in the colon and rectum — so much so for Wilkinson that she ultimately had to have her colon removed and now wears a stoma bag to collect bodily waste.

"Symptoms can be bleeding, bloating and pain," Wilkinson explained in an interview with Zoella last September. "It got to a point where I was going to the toilet 25 times a day and losing so much blood and weight that a surgeon decided to remove my colon."

But having a, in her words, "stoma body" has just fueled Wilkinson's so-called fire to spread messages about the importance of normalizing all bodies on Instagram. And last week, she began a conversation around what it means to have "a summer body."

Wilkinson posted a series of images of herself in a red bikini — each of which shows off her stoma bag and features a different message. The first shot offers a close-up of Wilkinson's abdomen with the text, "Not a reason to not wear a bikini 👙❤️," followed by a more zoomed-out image of the influencer posing with her hands in a heart shape next to the words, "Every body is a Bikini body." And the final photo shows a smiling Wilkinson and reminder, "You are already Summer ready." (

As for the post's caption? Wilkinson went on to explain why it's so important for women to redefine what it means to have a "summer body." "We have been brainwashed with this perfect body image and to get 'summer body ready' but what exactly is a perfect body? Who set that standard? What exactly is summer body ready?" she wrote. "I know for a fact it isn't a body with a stoma that people are talking about. If I were to follow societies [sic] expectations my body wouldn't ever be ready for anything."

She further challenged the idea that a body needs to be "ready" for the arrival of any given season: "Well this is me being summer body ready and in fact any time of the year bloody body ready. Because I have a body that deserves to enjoy everything in life just like anyone else." Finally, she encouraged her 30k followers to shift their perspective about body image. "You do you this summer because you are absolutely your own version of perfection ♡Rather than asking the question 'is my body ready for the summer?' Flip it and ask instead 'but is summer ready for my body? 🔥' We got this together ❤️," she ended her caption. (

Wilkinson echoed a similar sentiment in another Instagram post yesterday, urging her Instagram followers not to alter themselves "for a society we are outgrowing."

"I used to hide myself away, keep my bag covered, keep my stretch marks covered, keep EVERYTHING that I've grown up thinking is wrong with my body completely covered," she shared. "I will no longer shrink myself to fit into a society that is built on unrealistic beauty standards." (And Wilkinson's not the only one taking a stand. Stars such as Lizzo have also recently called out these unrealistic beauty standards — and TG for that/them.)

"I am PROUD of this body and I will not hide to make others feel more comfortable 🌟," Wilkinson finished off her latest post.

With that A+ attitude, summer can't come soon enough.

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