"I've been heavy for as long as I can remember..."
I’ve been heavy for as long as I can remember...
I couldn’t give you an age in which I noticed the change; no one really knows what age one goes from being the adorable chubby child to the fat girl. I’ve always been jovial, seemingly confident & outgoing, but also naïve & insecure; still am, occasionally.
Young me participated in activities like girl scouts, ballet, t-ball and, gymnastics paired with hobbies ranging from pretending to be a mermaid for hours in a pool (or, bath), camping or anything outside to any creative endeavors (filming "Soaps" with Barbies, performing skits for no one, playing piano while singing Disney classics at full volume, etc.) or checking out every book the library had about dogs in attempts to form an argument as to why we NEEDED one. Typical cool kid stuff, ya know? Then, into my adolescent years, with years of volleyball and cheer leading (&, about a week of track, ha!), paired with more dramatic ventures (who would have guessed?) like music (chorus & band), theater (musicals and not), & attempting to socialize (dances, friends, boys,...AIM had just come out (AOL Instant Messenger), need I say more?).
My first recollections of realizing I was different or bigger than other girls was in 3rd grade. After moving, being the "new girl", I was told that a boy wanted to ask me to be his “girlfriend.” (Ridiculous, 3rd grade?) It turned out to be a joke, at my expense, with some snarky remark like, “I’d never like someone as fat as you”, ending with an explosion of laughter from his cafeteria table.
Food has always been comforting; delicious & so f*cking joyful from mounds of macaroni to sweet dessert treats & crispy French fries to French toast breakfasts. A perfect food for every occasion. My favorite memories were made around food! Going out to eat with friends or food with family always brought about happiness and good times. Holidays surrounded by loved ones & the feast which accompanied were guaranteed memories in the making... Food has been a constant staple of happiness & was always there for me; after every disappointment (bad day, self doubt, failed test, been ghosted, bombed interview, stupid dudes) and after every victory (ice cream after baseball, killing it at school, dominated work, that cute boy texted me, it tastes good).., until I realized, that food was perpetuating these cycles. It was making me "fat". No, it had made me "fat".
I was the fat funny friend through high school; band geek and Superintendent's daughter with no true clique floating through the halls overcompensating insecurities with jokes, quips, and sarcasm, using humor as my outlet. Getting older, boys seemed to only pay attention to my much thinner friends and I was repeatedly the third wheel. Or, I was the "best friend" left with more than friends feelings. This trend felt like it continued into college. I started throwing myself at any sign of attention, just wanting to be loved. I didn’t understand why I was always overlooked for things of the romantic nature.. while being the "life of the party", the fun and "funny" one, semi cool, a little wild, was always told I "had a pretty face", and smart like a fox...like?? Being used more often than not or hearing "You're the marrying type"... but, not the dating type? Okay. Wtf, how confusing? Was it me? Am I not lovable?
In my weakest moments, I even sunk to lows of "catfishing" online; I wanted to connect or, at least, let my personality get a chance, albeit through a lie. Was it solely my image that was repulsive? Would people get to know "me" and love me? The repercussions of such sad childish games were probably more traumatic than helpful, on behalf of both parties (I'm sorry). However, I knew it was no longer my personality. It was my image, my body. I hated it. I was lovable when I looked like someone else. I started thinking I had to change in order to live the life I had always envisioned. I would no longer let my body dictate my life or who I could be (or, be with). It was time to be "thin". (Or, so I thought.... I didn't understand the spiral I was about to send myself on).