Most of my life, I have battled with my weight. The conscious thoughts of how I look or don’t look haunted me for years. Honestly, writing this is very difficult for me, but I thought I’d share because after all, I write to heal and to help enlighten and heal others.
I was a skinny child, but then the big bad wolf or as it is called today, bullying became a very real part of my life. At the age of 10, I began to be bullied. I was more developed and shapely than a lot of the little girls in my class. I mean what can I say? Curves run in my family. Now, jealousy breeds insecurity and what did those insecure little people decide to do? They decided to bully me. I was very quiet and studious. I wanted nothing more than to have great girlfriends I could pass notes to in class or hang out with at the playground, but unfortunately, that is not how my story goes. I lived no childhood fantasy, my days in 4th and 5th grade were filled with daily torture and of course, it began with me being called “FAT”. I was taller than the boys and more developed than the girls and that constituted being fat apparently. Well, although I wasn’t fat, it wasn’t long before my waist began to expand and my clothes sizes began to increase. I was becoming what they had called me. I ate my feelings trying to mask the hurt and torment. I became depressed and honestly by 13 thoughts of death invaded my head. If this was life, I just didn’t want to live it anymore. My wardrobe even reflected depression. Not a bright color in sight; only black, blue, and gray.
Fast forward to adulthood because this would be 15 pages long if I didn’t. I am now 34 years of age and my weight is still a looming issue. I have never had any other issue with my appearance in my mind or the mind of others except my weight. If an immature grown person wants to be cruel, they only reference one thing, which is my weight. Now, I do my best to avoid negativity or feeding into it. Hell, they’ve even built an entire movement in society around loving your curves and being a BBW (Big Beautiful Woman). No offense to the movement, really I applaud them, but the fact that there has to be one in the first place is beyond me. No terminology makes me feel more uncomfortable in my skin that has been given to the plus size community whether it be plush pals, fluffy, fat or BBW. Honestly, I just want to be seen for who I am. There is so much more to me than my weight.
The truth of the matter is, I use to want to lose weight for other people because I wanted to meet the standard of beauty that has been set forth by society, but now I am putting fitness first because I want to do this for me. Here are three of my main reasons for finally beginning a journey of faith and fitness.
1. Health is Wealth
We have all heard the saying you are what you eat and that is so true. As an African American woman, there are plenty of odds against me in the arena of health with the number 1 being heart disease. Then there are the things that run in my families such as hypertension and diabetes. Although I do not have any of these at the moment, I also do not want them in my future at any point. It is my desire to live a long healthy and successful life and in order to do that, I have to get fit. Being fit will allow me to travel comfortably, do things that have certain weight requirements, and simply live life without stipulations based upon my weight. My goal is gain more energy, speed my metabolism, eat healthier, and exercise at least 5 times a week.
2. My Body is a Temple and I Must Honor It
God gave me this Earth suit and he expects me to take good care of it because he is not issuing any new ones. Believe me, if it was as easy as making an exchange, I would have done that a long time ago. In 1 Corinthians 6: 19 – 20 NLT it reads, “Don’t you realize that your body is the temple of the Holy Spirit, who lives in you and was given to you by God? You do not belong to yourself for God bought you with a high price. So you must honor God with your body”. Now, this verse means honoring God with our bodies in so many ways, but I am going to focus on the health portion. God gives us purpose, but in order to fulfill our purpose, we need to be in great health. I began to see this fitness journey as a way to honor God and not just simply for me. I now cringe when I don’t make it to the gym because I stayed up too late and no longer have the time or energy by the day’s end to make it there. However, I am no longer allowing that to be an excuse for me to fall off for weeks and months at a time. I just get up the next day and get right back to it. I’m also learning to make healthier decisions with my eating. It’s not perfect, but I do meal prep and will soon be purchasing a customized meal plan full of things that are good and good for me. I’ve found that when I have a plan, I thrive. It’s already set and all I have to do is follow through. Developing consistency is the hardest part, but this year I will do it and I will not stop. I will give back to God even this small portion of what he has given me.
3. Bound for Butt Naked Fine
Let’s face it, we all want to look good naked and I am no different. When these clothes come off, I want to dance in the mirror naked with no jiggle in the middle. I want to wear a swimsuit and not care about my midsection, arms or thighs. I want to shop anywhere I want to instead of having to pick select stores with plus size attire. I just want to live free of this burden that has held me, hostage, since I was 10 years old. I want to be appreciated for ME!
Don’t get me wrong, I love me. I get compliments every single day. I am constantly reminded of how beautiful and desirable I am, but this is not about that. Beauty and worth are not determined by what size pants you wear.
This is not for fame or glory. This is for the little girl that never got the opportunity to live in a world not filled with being bullied. This for every woman who has suffered from bulimia or anorexia trying to fit a mold. This is for every person who struggles with knowing that they can if they try. This is the shut the hell up to all the people who ever tried to make me feel like my size determined my worth. Whether I lose 20 pounds or 85 pounds, I will shed weight, but not just physical weight. The weight of false judgment, cruelty, blame, guilt, and bullying. I love me just the way I am, but being FIT is just another achievement that I want for me and my future.
Shoutout to all the voluptuous beauties making it happen every day and kicking society’s ass by saying I am beautiful and I will be appreciated just the way I am. You are loved and you are appreciated, but do not neglect your health!
Until next time…cheers to being bold and beautiful because our beauty is the only thing that makes us bigger than life!