Sunday, March 21, 2010

Age 21

When I look in the mirror, I see big thighs and a bit of a flabby tummy, but you know what - I think I’m beautiful the way I am!

Before I turned 17, I used to be a slim UK size 8…now I am a UK size 12. I may have been skinnier but when I look back, I was never happy. I never felt confident about the way I looked and I wasn’t the bubbly person I am today.

Up until recently, I’ve been obsessed with dieting and trying to lose weight - but even doing that made me miserable! Now I’ve decided to get over the way I look, and by doing so, I’ve started to notice what’s more important in life. I’ve focused more on my university studies and decided to take on voluntary work. I also take care of myself health-wise rather than obsessing about my weight. My weight is healthy so why bother.

I’ve also realized that I have a lot of good qualities that are much more important than any bit of cellulite or flab on my body. Life is so much better when you learn to love yourself!

Thursday, March 18, 2010

Age 19

I'm about to be 20, and I really hoped I would've stopped thinking about these things by now. I have never had an eating disorder, but two of my closest friends have suffered from anorexia and bulimia and I feel guilty sometimes for being naturally thin around them when I know that putting on weight stresses them out. But the thing is, it stresses me out too.

Recently I really dislike my body even though it's a healthy weight. I just feel like my hips are lumpy and unattractive, like I'm too short to carry any extra weight. I weigh 111 lbs now, and at my highest weight ever I was 118. I am petrified of someday weighing more than 120 lbs. I know I'm not fat, but I'm not in shape either. My thighs have cellulite and I have love handles. I almost went back on Prozac even though it made me suicidal because my appetite was gone when I took it - I weighed 104 lbs and felt so thin and people noticed and complimented me. Now I feel hungry all the time.

The only parts of my body I like are my wrists and my calves, but my calves are even kind-of ruined for me because I've inherited really poor circulation and I have spider veins and scars and blotches. I can't shake the idea that models in magazines are normal no matter how many times I read that it's not true…I just feel like that's the right way to look and then I feel terrible. I'm a lesbian and at one point with my ex I thought, "God, my body is so much uglier than hers" and then immediately hated myself because she's anorexic and she was being so unhealthy at the time. One part of my mind knew that I wanted her to eat healthy and be happy and yet, another part was saying "she looks good!" even though her bones were jutting out. Body image is so fucked up in our generation.

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Age 24

When I look in the mirror, sometimes I see my nice ankles, or my decent calves, or my pretty collarbone; but most of the time my eyes are focused on the cellulite on my butt, or the way my legs touch all the way down, or how I still have the pooch on my stomach that will never ever go away. I am 5'5" and weigh 130 lbs, but I still feel like I jiggle like jello when I try to run or jump onto a bed, and like my stomach is huge when I bend over to kiss my boyfriend or sit at a computer. My younger sister, who is about the same size as me, feels the same way. Our mother has always obsessed over her weight, going from 120 lbs up to 200 lbs and back again, and SHE has always felt fat because her sister was thin and beautiful. It is awful what we as women put ourselves through even though we know better. I am so scared that I will always worry about getting fat or not being pretty enough and that I will pass it on to my children. I would hate to make them feel like this, even unintentionally. I just read through the accounts on this site, and it made me cry to see the age range of women who aren't happy with themselves. I don't want to hate my body for my whole life.

Sunday, March 14, 2010

Age 23

What I see when I look in the mirror? I see a body that has been through a lot - sports, diets, eating disorders, injuries, ups, downs, love moments, hate moments. My whole life is written within my body. Each muscle, each fat inch, each scar is a trace of the way I've lived and the goals I've achieved so far. If I can be proud of my story, than I have to learn to be proud of my body. Even if it doesn't resemble to the general idea of the perfect body, even if I don't get complimented for it as much as I would like, still I have to learn to be proud of it. It's a daily struggle - it's not a thing you achieve overnight. Still it is something I want to achieve.

Friday, March 12, 2010

Age 23

I see something different every time I look in the mirror. It's a mind game. I see my body change in 5 minutes from before to after I throw up. I see something different if I eat or if I don't eat. I see someone who is not really me. I see secrets and lies and emptiness. Then I see Jesus. And I wonder why I choose to live in the empty when He has offered the fullness of life.