For years I have struggled with my weight.
I’m about to be 26 and as I look back at my body over the years, I realize I wasn’t always as big as I thought. When I was in high school and the early part of undergrad, I was bigger than most girls, but I was a nice size. I just had people telling me I was fat and making me feel awful instead of motivating me. I had a family member and a boyfriend who constantly tore me down. They never offered help and just said things like, “You should weigh this much” or “You should be this size.”
This led to me feeling down and stressing out. What did I turn to? Food. It made me feel better. So as I ate more, I gained more weight. I tried exercising, but I just wasn’t motivated to go work out like I should. It was just easier to stay in my room and eat while watching tv or doing school work. I lost some weight while pledging Delta, but going out to eat with your line sister almost every week can bring that weight back. It wasn’t until last year that I got serious about losing weight.
Over the course of 2013, I lost about 35 pounds. I’ve gained a few pounds back, lost them again, and gained them back again. Yo-yoing happens so it doesn’t bother me. However I’ve been told (by the same family member I mentioned earlier) that I should “lose some more” and that I “should be 130 pounds.” I try to ignore comments like that and focus on the success of losing weight and no longer being 220 pounds. (Sometimes I can’t believe I weighed that much!)
I mean…I think I look pretty damn good either way, but I’m glad to have dropped some weight for health reasons. It’s not just about the number on the scale, especially since I FEEL better. Anyway, I also focus on the people who tell me that I look great and that they’re proud of me. It’s a struggle and it’s very important to have supportive people around.
It’s not just people you know who can make you feel bad about weight. The media plays a part too, of course. You grow up seeing skinny, white girls in magazines and on TV and it can bother you. Luckily, it didn’t bother me TOO much but I’ve seen how it affects other girls.
Now we have women in television and in movies that are more realistic. I think Mindy Kaling is a great example. Though Mindy’s not trying to be some crusader for body acceptance, she is all about letting people know that it’s OK to look like a normal woman and that it’s OK to worry about your weight and want to lose some pounds. Why? Because that’s what we go through! I relate to Mindy because she says things like, “…I’m always trying to lose fifteen pounds. But I never need to be skinny. I don’t want to be skinny.”
That’s pretty much how I feel.
I may want to lose a certain amount of pounds, but I never want to be skinny. I don’t think I’d look great. I like having a little extra to love and being curvy. That’s what body positivity is all about. Finding the good and focusing on that.