Growing up, I had never been very comfortable with my body, specifically in terms of my weight. Throughout high school I was never the most girly or skinny but I was generally okay with that. Uncomfortable at times yes, but I had friends, I played sports and did generally well in school academically so I didn’t have a very unpleasant high school experience. I enjoyed it a lot actually. It wasn’t until after l left my home town and would come back to visit friends and family that I started questioning the way I viewed myself as well as how others viewed me then and now. Without a doubt every time I go home and see someone from high school, close friends, and sometimes even parents of friends, that I haven’t seen in a while, one of the first things that they comment on is my weight. Usually things like, oh my god, you’ve lost so much weight or you look so good now, have you been working out a lot? What’s your secret? And every once in a while someone will add to the end of the comment “not that you ever looked bad or big, you just look really good now.” I tell myself to just take the compliment, but it’s hard to just take it when there is an underlying negative aspect that I can’t help but to associate with it. These comments really have me self-reflecting a lot because I weigh maybe five to ten pounds lighter than I did in high school, do I really look that different?
Most of the weight loss is not a healthy weight loss. Which took me a long time to realize. More so result of not taking time to eat properly because of stress and anxiety and a general lack of appetite because of it. But everyone responds to my body like I have lost a drastic amount of weight. This has caused me to think excessively about a time in my life that has long since passed. Was I just the funny fat girl who happened to have pretty friends, and that’s why people hung around me? Or were people friends with me because they genuinely enjoyed my company? Even my mother has made the comment of “she just doesn’t eat anymore” when people comment on my weight loss around her. To everyone else, I have lost weight and that’s such a good thing, but for me the weight loss and comments serve as a constant reminder that I have become temporarily incapable of taking care of myself and body because of the stress, anxiety, and depression that I deal with every day. The past couple years have been the most trying for me mentally so having this constant reminder of that adds another layer to the hardship. Work, school, and other obligations are always put first over making sure that my body is healthy and well taken care of, both physically and mentally.