Disclaimer: I apologize in advance if this offends anyone – remember that this is MY personal journey. This is my Truth of where I am right now in my life and what I am going through (in my words).
A year and a half ago, I was at my heaviest weight I have ever been. I weighed 167 pounds, wore size 14 pants, and I hated myself. I hated seeing pictures of myself, because it would gross me out. I was disgusted with how fat and unhealthy I had let myself become. I had vacillating digestive issues, swollen legs, headaches and depression. I didn’t like getting dressed in the morning, because I hated how my clothes fit and how I looked in them. I hated shopping even more, because I thought I should be able to fit into at the largest a size 10, and would get more and more depressed as the sizes kept going up, and I still didn’t fit in them. I had a hard time making love to my husband, because even though I knew that he loved me for who I am, and married me because he loves me, I didn’t want to gross him out with my body. And I didn’t understand how he could love me when I hated myself.
Go back about 15 years to when I was in high school, and although I weighed a bit less (about 155 when I graduated), I had a complex. I was always “the chubby one” in my family. I had a gorgeous sister, a beautiful mother (who was nicknamed “hard-body” by my brother’s friends), and I had slender, good looking father and brother. I had a little chub (not even that much!), but because I was “the chubby one” or the “not as pretty sister” I got a complex. I always felt heavy, less than I should be, and not so happy with myself. I made up for it by pretending to be super confident in everything my life had to offer – I excelled at academics, I was involved in everything, and I had an attitude that filled multiple rooms. Everyone thought I had it made – I was really convincing! Only, I didn’t have myself convinced. Inside, I was the little chubby sister who was always trying to show everyone that I was just as good (and skinny and beautiful) as everyone else in my family and in my community.
Fast forward to now. I am 32 years old, and in the best shape of my life. I have dropped almost 30 pounds from my top weight, have resolved most of my health issues through nutrition and exercise and I have 6-pack abs! I have a loving husband, a wonderful, vibrant life, and a great relationship with my family (especially my beautiful big sister!). But, I still have that fat girl complex. I still think of myself as the chubby little sister that is trying to prove herself. I can still feel those love handles, even though they are pretty much gone. I still feel like I have monster thighs, even though they have shrunk by lots of inches. I still feel super self-conscious in a bathing suit. I still feel fat. And the funny thing is, the mirror is my friend. I look in the mirror and I see how silly I am being; I love what I see, I love my body, my health, and myself. But for some reason, I am struggling to get over that fat girl complex.
So, now that I am a “fat girl stuck in a skinny girl’s body”, how do I become a healthy, sexy and fit girl, not just in body, but in my mind as well?
Here are some of my ideas that I have been working on:
1. Writing this has helped me a lot. I didn’t know how much it helped until I read it to my husband. I didn’t realize how much emotion was still attached to my weight and my past until I had to say it out loud to someone I love. Let yourself do the same. Write about what you are struggling with and share it with someone you love. Maybe then you will force yourself to face the truth and it will help you to begin to see yourself as others see you.
2. Ask someone you love (someone you know will tell you the truth and not just tell you what they think you want to hear) to tell you what they love about you. Tell them that you want them to talk about whatever you are struggling with as well (like for me, my weight and body issues). Don’t feel weird asking for this. We all need to hear good things about ourselves, and asking for it is a way to make sure that you hear them!
3. Remind your significant other to tell you how beautiful or sexy you are. It may sound silly and demanding, but I know that my husband didn’t realize how much I loved hearing that until I asked him to say it more often. And I know he means it and isn’t just saying it, even though I asked for it. It is one of the most wonderful things to know that your significant other finds you irresistible!
4. Get rid of your dumpy clothes. The other day, I found myself wearing old sweatpants that have a saggy ass and make me look square and an over-sized fleece sweater. It did not make me feel sexy or happy with myself, it made me feel dumpy and ugly. I continued to wear them all day (for some odd reason!) and when I went to bed, I took them off and threw them in a pile to go to Goodwill. I don’t want to feel or look dumpy ever again!
5. Last but not least, buy yourself some sexy underwear (and bras too!). You will be amazed at how much better you feel about yourself when you feel confident running around the house (even with clothes over them) in a sexy thong and matching bra!
Let me know if you have any more ideas on how to banish that inner fat girl forever, because even though I’ve made progress, she is still lurking around. We all need a little help… and I am finally not afraid to ask for it!