Passion Meets Purpose... Anything's possible.
Self-worth & Love
I've spent periods of time loving my body and hating my body, thin or not. It had become a vicious cycle. Looking at my media research made me realize I'll never be "perfect" and that's okay. There is no "perfect". The only person I can compare myself to...is myself. Numbers are just numbers. Even at 175, I found myself in the mirror, looking back, focused on the imperfections of my body; my stomach, wondering how many more sit-ups I had to do, my loose skin, pondering if I could afford surgery to get it cut off, my deflated breasts, thinking I needed a lift.., shit, an entire body lift, my thighs, wondering how they were still so rotund, my upper arms, watching them jiggle. The feeling was euphoric every time I stood and the scale and the number dropped. Little did I know, everyone else was concerned with how thin I was getting, but to me, I was still technically over weight. (I still am.)
There’s a difference between feeling sexy and feeling beautiful. You can’t feel sexy without feeling beautiful and you can’t feel beautiful unless you love yourself. I wanted to feel beautiful on the inside and outside. I tried not to be bitter and angry, it wasn’t going to help anything. I embraced my qualities & forgave my flaws; I’m only human & this is who I am. It is what it is. I am me.
I began realizing what I’m worth and loving myself. I have a loving family and friends who adore me. I’m unique, intelligent, and talented – I deserved more than what the image in the mirror portrayed. The more I realized these things the happier I became. Of course, I don’t think my body is perfect, but I learned to appreciate it for what it does for me. It doesn’t just allow me to live by functioning; it allows me to really live by feeling & experiencing. My legs are strong and carry me through out my day, through Mexico! My heart is SO big and is not only my source of life, but enables me to love so strongly and feel so deeply. My arms allow me to comfort with hugs, regardless of their size. No matter how much crap I feed into my body,... it’s always there for me the next morning. It helps me experience life in all of my senses; smelling freshly cut grass or flowers and hearing the birds chirping and wind rushing through the trees. It can transport me through time with memories and emotions. It allows me to learn and grow. Our bodies are truly beautiful; inside and out. With out my body, I am nothing. I needed to love my body the way it loves me.
Third Times A Charm
I am now in a phase of loving myself and learning to be healthy, at the same time. I graduated with my Masters of Science in Media Influence & Law in December of 2016. I promptly left for Mexico the following month, January 2017. While exploring, I felt some of those familiar "less than" feelings, but also was learning that my health was of the upmost importance.
At 300+lbs, I realized something.. (coincidentally, as I climbed a mountainous hill in the 105° heat headed towards a beach full of thonged bronzed bodies)... I realized that my body was NOT cooperating with my wants, needs, nor daily itinerary. . All of the walking in the heat had worn me down (literally, chaffed everywhere, including my self esteem) & I was exhausted before we even got to where we were going, physically & mentally. Everything a chore, almost to the point of me not wanting to participate. Besides the daily challenge of completing physical tasks others weren’t even breaking a sweat over or worrying if I was too heavy for the 12 seat plane.. it was frustrating feeling like a massive presence, yet also, invisible; no clothes my size, treated as if I were “one of the guys” or like I wasn’t even there, feeling like I let myself go beyond repair with my daily life woes, toxic relationships, anxiety & depression, and feeling a little... well, hopeless. I wanted to change. If I wasn’t going to take care of me.. who would? If my body failed me, there’d be NO way I’d be traveling anywhere! (Or, accomplishing all of my other goals in life) I had to be healthier. I had to change. It was then, on a rooftop in Mexico, that I decided to show myself the love that I was seeking. Self care means more than just cardio, clean eating, staying hydrated, & moisturized. A very large part of this journey for myself is a mental one... It’s discovering your strength. It’s re-awaking your passions. It’s learning to love yourself. It's treating myself the way I deserved to be treated. It’s being you. Take care of you.
Today (188), I am happier than I have ever been. I have big plans and huge goals, but want to accomplish them while showing my body the love that it's shown me. I feel empowered... as a beautiful strong female who can hopefully be an example for others someday. I know I’m not perfect, but I also know that’s not what defines me. I've made myself a priority, not an option.
This time, I lost weight for me, for my health and future. I had a detailed plan that encourages frequent checkups and check-ins. I’ve also learned that talking about this issue to others helps tremendously, reaching out to online support groups and a handful of close friends. Their support and stories help me daily! I’ve recently started an IG about my journey (@MelissaMakesMoves). It is very therapeutic & I hope / believe it might bring comfort to those who have a similar story to mine. It's also a way to keep me on track and helps me stay motivated through accountability. It allows me an opportunity to not only gather my own thoughts, but also find inspiring content for others, as well as, myself. I plan on launching publicly in 2018.
This journey has made me embrace myself and empowered me to carry on. Anything is possible! I mentioned previously that I didn’t like the word "fat". I still don’t, because it’s typically used in a cruel fashion, but it doesn’t define who I am anymore. I’ve taken away its power and it doesn’t give me that sick feeling anymore. My weight does not dictate who I am and what I can do.
I feel empowered as a female with the knowledge that I don’t need anyone’s approval other than my own.
I feel empowered as a person, knowing how strong I truly am. I am incredible. Our bodies are amazing.
Although, I am all of these things, empowered, strong, and intelligent, I still have weak moments. I have to remind myself that I’m still the same person no matter what weight. I am still desirable. I'm still lovable. I am not my body, but my body is a part of me. It needs to be nourished, just as much as the soul. I love me and that can’t be taken away. I am a priority, not an option.