Hi guys, a personal one from me today. I wanted to write about my experiences growing up with what’s mentioned above, as I’ve noticed they are becoming more and more common. I have always struggled with my weight and in this day and age when everyone is under so much pressure to look perfect, it’s a hard one to crack. If eating disorders, honesty or personal experiences offend you, then please click off my blog and back onto whatever you were doing before, thank you 🙂
So, when I was younger I was thin. I saw photos of me when I was three years old and my torso is skinny, my stomach is flat but my thighs and legs are a bit bigger. This photo shocked me, because I would have loved to of stayed that size. For years I battled with myself because I wanted to be thin, it was enforced into me that thin was in and that was the end of it. Talking to family members it’s apparent why I was so thin- I didn’t eat.
Apparently until I was seven (when my weight packed on, even as a kid) all I ate was cold food. Sugar free jellies, cold plain pasta and chicken was all I would touch. With none of that being enough to live on, my parents tried me with new food and hot food, but eating proper portions for a child and increasing my calorie content after so long meant that even though I was eating healthier and a little more, I was packing on weight. And with us living in a tiny flat with no where to run or play, instead of it becoming growing muscle it became fat. As an eight year old girl I was bullied for my weight and I thought I was ugly and hideous. I should have been thinking about which barbie doll to play with, but instead I was obsessing over the tiny belly roll I had when I sat down.
So time went on and I remained the same, I got taller (even though I’m still 5’2 now, *sigh*) and when I started high school, I was teased and tortured repeatedly because of my weight. Looking back at photos, I looked uncomfortable all the time like I was too scared to go outside because of the way I looked. I had no friends and I was miserable, because I was a bit bigger than other girls.
From the age of thirteen, I wouldn’t eat breakfast or lunch, I wouldn’t snack and I would only eat a small amount at dinner. I would control my hunger with pints of water and the occasional sugary drink which was probably damaging my insides. I would exercise like a maniac when I was home, doing leg ups and push ups and all other kind of ups that there are. The weight started to drop off, but in my face I still look miserable and malnourished. I was constantly controlling what I was eating, I wouldn’t eat something if it didn’t fit into one palm. I would chew gum to make me feel satisfied.
It’s weird because at this time, I started to lose a huge amount of weight but I still had a small tummy that just wouldn’t budge. No matter how much I exercised, it would not tone. It was irritating and I missed eating, but I was so, so terrified of it. I would skip PE because I hated getting dressed infront of the other girls, it felt like the worst thing in the world and everybody just thought I was lazy. But having lost two stone, I felt like I could now finally join in.
And you know what? I loved it. I loved my hour long sessions in the fitness suite and playing hockey in the cold on a Thursday morning. I was good at it, but I started to gain muscle and that meant my weight on the scales was heavier- I started to stop eating again.
I would allow myself one day in the week where I could eat two meals, that was my favourite day. I liked eating, I was just terrified too incase it became fat on the outside of my body. Now I realise that we need fat in our bodies and being on the curvier side isn’t a bad thing, but we have more people in the headlines showing us that than there we’re back then. Iska Lawrence and Aliss Bonython are amazing ambassadors for curvier, healthy bodies. Honestly this year their instagrams have been a life saver as I’ve tackled body image issues.
I started to eat properly and I started to work out properly too, which meant I was back to a healthy weight but I went on the pill. Now the pill caused me to gain a stone, which really made me plummet. I couldn’t starve myself because it made me have no energy, so I would eat and then purge it. When my parents would ask me what happened, I would tell them I was scared of having food poisoning. I hated the fact I was back to being ‘the fat girl’. I despised looking in the mirror or catching a glimpse of myself in a shop window. I would avoid anything that meant I would see myself for what I am.
Eventually, I realised how unhealthy these issues were with food and I stopped. I decided I was going to eat what I wanted for a few weeks and just chill. I lost six pounds from doing that, my metabolism loved it. But I wasn’t eating healthy food, I was eating Pizza and Pasta, anything carby that made me feel comforted and cosy. I noticed I didn’t have the best of diets and I was bloating massively, I can’t digest certain foods which is why I have a ‘little belly’. I have irritable bowel syndrome, which affects many in many ways, but for me I swell like I’m nine months pregnant about to drop. My gut doesn’t digest certain foods and doesn’t take the nutrients from them properly, which means I get ill from it. I can’t eat some meat because my body just stores it, I can’t eat a lot of fruit and veg at once as it causes sharp, shooting pains.
A year ago, I decided to educate myself on nutrients and just nourish my body a little bit. I felt amazing and honestly my confidence has soared since realising a balanced diet is the worlds best mental and physical medicine. I’m not afraid to eat, I’m not jealous of skinnier girls and I don’t compare myself to others.
Ideally, I would like to be a size smaller so my BMI is more healthy for my height, but I’ll get there. It’s easy for us to be blinded to what we think we should be, but we should never suffer to conform to anybody else’s ideals. Every body type is beautiful, doesn’t matter if you’re skinny, curvy, muscular or burly. What matters is how you feel on the inside.