The Shape of a Mother The Shape of a Mother The Shape of a Mother The Shape of a Mother The Shape of a Mother

« | Home | »

It has been a rough road, but I’m not ashamed of it. (L)

April 15, 2011

I don’t remember exactly what age or when I developed negative body issues. I almost feels as if I have had those issues all of my life… but if I were to be completely honest, I know that’s not true.

I remember when I started to develop in middle school I would wear two pairs of jeans to school because I thought I was too skinny — “00” jeans wouldn’t fit me, and every time I went to get a physical from my doctor I would always pray that I would finally make it into the triple digits so that I could be like everyone else. I was asked by classmates if I was anorexic, but at that time I didn’t even know what anorexia meant. Looking back, even then I never felt like I fit in or was “acceptable” or pretty. I didn’t even grow boobs until I was a freshman in high school!

Freshman year was rough! I still feel sick to my stomach just thinking about that time in my life. I developed really quickly out of nowhere and it took me completely by surprise. You would think that I would have been ecstatic, finally filling out my clothes with some curves, but I wasn’t at all. You see, at that time I was in a relationship with a boy from my youth group who was young and stupid and would say he loved me but then tell all of my close girl friends that he loved them too. He would tease kisses from all of them, spend hours on the phone with them at night, but then run and ask me for forgiveness because of course we were meant to be together, get married, and get lost in our dreams. That relationship did a lot of damage — as innocent and naive as it was at 15.

I think one of the worst memories I have of him — and I believe it’s one of the main events that kind of ‘knocked me off the edge’ — was when this boy and I were at the beach with a group of friends. I randomly asked him how I looked in my bikini, since I was a little insecure, and he said that I needed to lose some weight in my legs. To add emphasis, he even pointed out my thick ankles, cellulite, and stretch marks. I was devastated. To this day I haven’t had the courage to put on a bikini, much less go to the beach.

Over the course of three years there was a lot more mental abuse. I didn’t know better to run from him. I guess I stayed because he was the guy every girl wanted to date at church — it felt good to be the girl he liked.

After the beach episode, my obsession how I looked got even more intense. I was too naive to not take his words with a grain of salt; what he said mattered to me. I believed that if he saw me as unattractive and fat, then everyone else must have the same thoughts, too! Mentally I began to pick people’s bodies apart; if I saw a girl with amazing legs or a flat chest I would obsess over it and beat myself up because I didn’t look like her. I started to despise my body. The body I initially wanted curvy. I began to really hate my chest, my “flabby” arms, my face, and especially my legs.

Innocently, I started to exercise more in my P.E. classes to lose the weight. But then, ever so slowly, it turned into me skipping lunch at school and exercising more. I lost a lot of weight that I couldn’t afford to lose. I honestly didn’t know that I was depressed then. And I certainly didn’t know that I was also dealing with anorexia. All I knew was that my mind felt as if it were completely taken over by angry, vicious thoughts telling me horrible, horrible things about myself. Anyone who has been through the depths of anorexia knows what I am talking about.

It wasn’t until I was kicked out of high school for a suicide attempt and put into a psych ward that I knew I needed help…

I wish I could write everything that I went through to get from that point to now, but it would be a novel. Trust me.

All I have to say though is: Praise Jesus that He didn’t give up on me when I gave up on Him! His mercy and love and eagerness to reach into my past, my hate, and heal me from the depression and destructive habits just astounds me! I tear up when I think about my loving family, my husband, and friends who knew how to go to war for me! I honestly don’t think I would have survived those 8 years without their love, support, and strength when I didn’t have anything.

It truly hasn’t been an easy road. But I am not ashamed of what I went through. I’ve gone through a lot of counseling over the past 10 years. And I have been antidepressant-free for two of those 10 years! I no longer struggle with anorexia or depression!

I wish I could say that I completely love how I look now, but honestly, I still struggle to like my body — most days are better than others though.

Each day I am choosing to like myself. One day soon… I will love myself.

-Photos: For context purposes, I am 5’5″ and 106lbs (which is a weight I’ve been stable at for roughly 6 years). All photos are of me currently.

-Age: 25

Post to Twitter Post to Facebook

19 Responses to “It has been a rough road, but I’m not ashamed of it. (L)”

  1. Anonymous Says:
    April 15th, 2011 at 5:44 pm

    What an amazing story of the power of Jesus! Praise God you can now see your worth. You are His precious child and he will always see you like that no matter what the number on the scale says. You look so beautiful and healthy! It’s wonderful to hear that you are happy now! Keep letting your family and friends support you and love you because it sounds like they are very amazing people who care deeply about you! Blessings!

  2. Jamie Says:
    April 16th, 2011 at 6:23 am

    I definitely think that a girl’s first boyfriend can play a big part in her development of a positive or negative body image. We all want to be attractive to the opposite sex and if she gets loving feedback then it can be very helpful. If she gets rejection, it can be devastating. I’m sorry that foolish boy was in your life at a critical time.

  3. theinvisible Says:
    April 16th, 2011 at 2:55 pm

    You are beautiful! I’m so sorry that happened to you. You are not alone it that unfortunately but you have overcome and will inspire in telling your story.

  4. Anonymous Says:
    April 18th, 2011 at 8:32 pm

    the last picture looks a lot like me, that could be my body. you are beautiful and i’m so glad you pulled through all those years with the strength of your family and true friends. i used to think i had fat ankles and fat legs too because of things people said! turns out it was muscle. screw them. you look strong, and healthy. we are all different, skinny and fat are phases we go through, each phase brings out beauty in us in a different way. i love how i feel when i’m chubby, and love that i can wear cute shirts and show off my boobs, but hate that i get fat in the face. it’s such a downward spiral when you get into picking yourself apart…enjoy life, enjoy the people around you! they sound wonderful! thank you for sharing your story.

  5. amber h Says:
    April 19th, 2011 at 7:51 am

    You look amazing. what i would give to ever have been in a 0 again since grade school… lol… keep your head up high and know that you are a beautiful woman

  6. BobKat Says:
    April 28th, 2011 at 5:14 pm

    A man’s perspective… a sensitive one. Very Difficult Years! I was the next to the shortest kid in MS and HS gym class. I developed pubic hair late, while other guys were hairy as apes. I had a “Big Henry” – still do, hated it – asked my father around age 9 why was it so big? I didn’t want it! My mother’s habit was to compare me to her friend’s son’s, how much better they were. I wasn’t taught/encouraged how/to to love myself, rather, at least a year and a 1/2 into college I still thought of myself as too short and skinny, a freak of sorts. That all changed… age 19, long story.

    I want to add one experience, around age 23 I worked at a college and had good relationships, was popular. I sat one day across from a very attractive women in the college cafe. 1977 I didn’t panic when she opened up and told me how awkward and strange her body was. She hated herself and suggested suicide. Which she did do around six months later.

    You are very attractive and have a very nice body. Love yourself!

  7. Momma Bird Says:
    April 29th, 2011 at 10:18 pm

    I wish I looked remotely half as good as you do! Keep on rocking on girl…

  8. Tiffany Says:
    May 4th, 2011 at 5:08 am

    Oh, honey, our stories are almost identical. I am also 25, and I struggled with anorexia longer than I want to admit. I believe I am just now beginning to love my body. The biggest problem was my obsession with numbers on the scale. Every woman is beautiful and health truly comes from all sizes. I am 5’5″ and 160 lbs. I am curvy, not fat, but I didn’t understand that for a long time. BMI calculators always placed me at the high end of normal, and that’s because they don’t correct for muscle mass. It’s taken me too long to accept that my husband loves my curves and would really have it no other way. I applaud your strength and your recovery. You are beautiful :)

  9. Mia Says:
    May 11th, 2011 at 3:31 pm

    You are beautiful! You put on that bikiniand flaunt your yourself. Do it for you and everyone who fought that war with/for you, God Bless!!

  10. Allie McArthur Says:
    May 11th, 2011 at 6:13 pm

    I want to thank you from the bottom of my heart for sharing your story. I’m a year younger than you and this reached out to me so much, I’m 5’2, 106lbs (depending on the good months & their occurances) and have struggled with an extremely similar history as yours early on, mine, barring the crazy guy (who I’d like to yell at for having no tact, sensitivity or kindness towards you), I feel the struggle you’ve gone through and I am SO PROUD OF YOU FOR CONQUORING IT!!!! YOU ROCK GIRL!

    Your story reaches out to me because I have had a continual struggle with body image, even though I firmly believe and know that God created me as He sees beautiful, and it nearly mirrors your story. Only recently have I begun fighting this head on with self-acceptance first, but your story is forever-bookmarked on here because it gives me hope and energy for this issue when I have none. Thank you, for sharing. So, so much. You and your story are such blessings and I know that ever-pressing idea of ‘do i look acceptable?’ is possibly still lurking in that cavern of ominous thoughts we w/body image issues all try to repress, girl- you are beautiful, and have a great lean surfer-woman build, ROCK IT AND BE PROUD! IT’S GORGEOUS!

    Thank you again for sharing. God bless you!!!!

  11. ken Says:
    May 13th, 2011 at 8:28 am

    I’m always amazed when I see such a beautiful physique and there is insecurity attached to it. As a man I have had to deal with rejection and negative self image issues due to my height, but it has taught me to see the beauty in all things. You have beauty in abundance, embrace it. :)

  12. Abigail Says:
    May 17th, 2011 at 6:28 am

    Your story is truly an inspiration to me. Thank you for sharing it.

  13. jim Says:
    May 19th, 2011 at 6:32 am

    be positive 1 day at a time your beautiful

  14. Stacy Says:
    June 9th, 2011 at 11:37 am

    You are such a beautiful young lady, seriously. If I had your body I would run around in a bikini every day! Stay strong and love yourself!

  15. Snuze Says:
    June 9th, 2011 at 9:13 pm

    I wish I have your waistline! *grin*

    We will never be perfect in the eye of others, but we can be perfect in our own eyes. Know that God never look at your physique, but rather your worth lies in who you are and what you do.

    Take care!

  16. Chelsea Says:
    January 26th, 2012 at 2:24 pm

    CUTE butt!!! Beautiful breasts! And what an awesome midsection! You’re gorgeous sweetie! Believe it!

  17. krisharay Says:
    May 11th, 2012 at 12:38 am

    Thank you so much for sharing your story, it could have been mine. I struggle with tearing myself apart. In all honesty, I saw your pictures and was thinking of how beautiful you look & I showed my husband. His response was, “you have the EXACT same body.” We never really see the beauty in ourselves, but so quickly find it in others and wonder why we can’t look like them. You are perfect as you are.

  18. Elena Says:
    November 2nd, 2012 at 2:04 am

    Honestly,you look good!Your body is good,is not so bad as you said.Be pround of yourself,everything that gliter is not a gold;)

  19. Deb Says:
    December 2nd, 2012 at 7:47 am

    I completely sympathise with your journey and I have to tell you that you are very beautiful. Your images show an amazing figure that you should be proud of.

    I know that despite the truth of that, it’s what you feel inside that matters. It sounds like you’re on your way to believing the truth about yourself finally. You have an exceptionally beautiful body. That is the truth.

Next | Previous

Support This Site