It’s 2019. I’m allowed to love myself exactly as I am.
So, growing up, the talk of the family during every gathering would be about my weight and my size. It was a hot topic of discussion. And even as an adult, I still can’t avoid it.
“Oh, Zoe, you really should be eating your vegetables.”
“Zoe, why don’t you try something new?”
“C’mon Zoe, look at yourself. Do you wanna be 300 pounds by the time your 20?”
“Oh, Zoe, do I see a VEGETABLE on your plate?”
I’ve heard it all from my family. And going to school as the fat kid wasn’t a grand ol’ time either.
I’d get whale noises shouted at me from across the hall, I’d be told I should lay off the twinkies or that no one would ever want to be with me because I’m fat. I’ve lived through some of my worst nightmares from when I was bullied because I was the fat kid.
Every time I looked at myself in the mirror growing up, I’d hate what I’d see. My stomach bulged out, I had the worst acne, my body was wider than others who were skinnier. The bullying over my body from my peers didn’t end until I left N.H, when there was no one else to make fun of.
I left the constant reminders that I was never the skinny one but those words cut through me like a sharp knife during high school, college and up until now in my mid-twenties. Words hurt, they sting and stick with someone for a long time.
Through all the bullying, I binged ate ice cream and chips and bread; it was as if no one ever fed me. I closet ate so much after everyone in the house would go to sleep. I ate my feelings away. I ate to make myself feel anything than what I was feeling in that present moment. Food made me feel better when I was walking through elementary school and middle alone with hardly any friends to go to.
I was already in a bottomless pit of nothing growing up, what did I have to lose?
I’ve tried all the dieting fads as early as 13 years old. My father and his wife once told my mom that they found an advertisement for diet pills and I should try them. I’ve gained weight, lost weight, gained weight, so on and so forth. I’ve binged, I’ve skipped meals thinking it would make a difference (it didn’t) and I made myself unhappy.
The same cycle just different points of my life.
I’ve always listened to everyone around me, encasing in their negativity and to call it what it is; utter bullshit. It is no one’s fault or doing but my own for the way I am.
And I’ve hated myself for too long and have beaten myself up over not being the deemed “perfect” standard of beauty society makes of women (also read: bullshit.) I’ve let everyone else’s opinions cloud my true perspective toward myself all my life.
Until last year, I didn’t know my body was imbalanced in its hormone production. PCOS is a hormone imbalance and part of that imbalance is the body loving fat and holding onto it, even if you’re trying to lose it, sometimes it will just stick. Yeah, I have a play in how fat I’ve gotten but when your body plays into it as well, it’s a whole new can of worms.
And yeah, my stomach is still too round. I have very large arms. I have a small double chin. I’m fighting to find a perfect balance in a body that’s imbalanced. Blah blah blah. I’m tired of talking about about the negatives! So instead, I’m going to talk about the positives because no one does that NEARLY enough when it comes to fat bodies.
I can keep up in a cardio workout. I can keep up in (beginner) dance classes. I can do a split. I look very nice in flowy dresses. I can handle a lot of weight during strength workouts. I can go for walks and not get out of breath. I look great in space buns. I’ve learned how to do a great smokey eye. I find the good in every single show I see. I’m an extreme extrovert. I have a great soprano range. I have fun all while making a fool out of myself.
But most importantly, I’m a work in progress. I have a long way to go until I end up at a place I want to be at. I’m taking the steps, I’m making the changes. But I’m physically tired of hating myself. I’m tired of blaming everything around me. I’m tired of feeling sorry for myself. I’m tired of explaining myself or why things have happened.
I don’t believe I need to love myself in order for someone else to love me. I do believe that I need to love myself in order for me to love me. Duh.
From this moment on, I’m going to stop hating myself for all that I’m not.
From this moment on, I’m going to let go of all the negative comments, words and actions that have eaten me up inside all these years.
From this moment on, I’m not going to feel like a failure when I get off the wagon in losing weight.
From this moment on, I’m not going to feel bad for the food that I eat.
From this moment on, I don’t care what anyone thinks of my body, my weight or how I look.
25 years is a long time to hate yourself and until recently, like New Year’s recently, I’ve started viewing myself in a new light. I’m seeing myself for who I’m meant to be. Like I said, I have a long way to go to where I want to be, and it’s going to happen, even if it takes a little longer. It’s my journey to live and tell and it’s okay if that journey is not linear. Besides, it’s not supposed to be.
Because no one has to wake up and live my life except me.
I’m letting go of all the, “well if you did this…” comments.
I’m letting go of all the, “we only say this because we love you…” tag lines.
I’m letting go of all the, “You were doing so well!” guilt trips.
I’m letting go of giving other people’s power over my life and how I should view myself. I’m letting go of the need to explain myself when I have nothing to justify. This is me.
I’m done apologizing and justifying my fatness. If you have a problem with me or any fat body you come in contact with, I suggest keeping any comments to yourself. They’re not welcomed and to be honest, if you have comments about anyone’s body, you need to check yourself. Because it’s messed up that you would even have such thoughts.
My name is Zoe. I’m beautiful, inside and out, just the way I am. And I mean that.