Tearing Down or Building Up

~Happy Father’s Day weekend! What are you all doing to show appreciation for your Fathers? I pray, whatever you decide to do, it’s received with love and appreciation. As for me, this Father’s Day is different. I’m so used to spending Father’s Day in a bitter slumped depression. This year, I’m overjoyed! I did do something special for my Dad. I pray he enjoys it!

Anywho, I’m not ready to open up and share my relationship with my Father with everyone just yet. I mean, I love everything about it, however, it’s still so new to me. I’m choosing to be very selfish when it comes to letting people into our blossoming relationship, and that’s perfectly fine! So, this week, I found a piece I wrote back in 2011 about body image. ( Specifically, how I felt about my body.) I wanted to share it with you all. Ready to journey? Awesome! Indulge & Enjoy.~

Look at me. Do you see me, or do you see me? Can you even tell the difference? Honestly, at this point, I can’t. I walk with pride, my head held high, pressed to the sky so that no one can see my lie. Yeah, I’m beautiful, smart, and talented, but in reality, I’m also dumb. Why? Because I’ve been living the same lie my whole life. How the hell did I forget who I really am…? It all started about 13 years ago. I was six. I thought I had the whole world ahead of me, I thought this was the start of my “real world,” the only problem was I didn’t know how real it would be.

I was in kindergarten, shorter than I am now of course but still chunky, and we as a class were doing the “What I want to be when I grow up” game. As we thought and told the lunch-lady what we wanted to be I noticed it was getting closer and closer to my turn. “Alyshia, what do you want to be when you grow up,” she asked with a friendly joyful smile on her face.

After giving it some thought I said, “I want to be a beautiful ballerina!” The lunch-lady responded with, “Well, you’re going to have to lose a lot of weight to make that dream come true.” This was my much too soon reality check. I never thought of myself as “fat” before. I mean, yeah I was chubby but chubby at my age was cute right?

That was the question on my mind that day that I went home. In the car, I asked my mother several questions trying to beat around the bush but my mom didn’t want to play my games.

“Yes Alyshia-Mae you are fat, but so is every woman in our family. It’s in our genes there is nothing you can do to change that.” But, every woman in my family also seemed angry. They are single with at least two children and I didn’t want to be like them. I couldn’t be like them I wanted to be happy. I wanted a family one day.

But maybe fat people aren’t allowed to have a happy family like skinny people. Maybe God made us be alone and,to be the angry people in the world. I knew no matter what I wanted I couldn’t go against what God already had planned for me.

Throughout the next day, I was pretty self-conscious about my size. I was confused because everywhere I went people would tell me how pretty I was, I wondered if they could see my fat like the lunch lady did. If they saw it they would know I couldn’t be pretty because fat people can’t be pretty and pretty people can’t be fat. For weeks I battled with myself on if I was really fat and then I went to the doctors and it was time to face the overweight truth.

“Boy, are you growing,” said my doctor. “Now only if we could get you to grow up instead of out.” I knew exactly what he was talking about. But it wasn’t like I wasn’t active; I played and ran around all the time, but my body never changed. That day, I walked out of my doctor’s office with a smile and a hand full of stickers but behind my smile was a million pounds of tears because I now had confirmation.

My fears were now my reality. And to this day those fears still remain… Will I ever get married? Will I ever have a child without the fear of getting larger? Are fat people supposed to be happy beautiful and talented?

I may never know the answer to any of my questions, but, I don’t want to carry this mask any longer. I’m tired of pretending to be happy. I’m tired of imagining myself as skinny. I want to be happy as I am. IN MY OWN SKIN. I want to love who I am, ALL OF ME. I want to enjoy life however I choose, without the pressure of conforming to the world image of what I should be. I want to be ME.

I mean wow…it’s fearful for me to realize how long I stayed in this awful place. I mean, I was still there up until last year. I hated what I saw when I looked in the mirror and it reflected in everything I did, in every aspect of life. I wasn’t living because I was too busy trying to hide my body from the world…

I know I’ve shared the Ballerina Story with you all before, and it probably won’t be the last time. I want the world to understand how impactful words are to children. One criticism of my body carried me from 5, or 6, all the way to 26 years old! No, that wasn’t the only criticism and maybe all the criticism I received was true, however, it’s all about how that criticism is delivered!! Is it constructive or destructive? Only someone insecure with themselves would provide destructive criticism to a child. With that being said…


As always, feel free to ask questions and/or leave feedback in the comments section.

(All new post will be uploaded Saturdays by 12:30 EST)


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