(April 2012 & June 2017)
I used to be so ashamed and mortified for people to see my old photos. I didn’t want them to point out the fact I had gained weight. I didn’t want them to say ‘wow you’ve let yourself go’ because I cared so much about other people’s opinion on my own body and beauty.
I do catch myself saying ‘I looked good, I didn’t appreciate it at the time, I want that body back!’ And I would be lying if I said I wouldn’t like to have my old body back and to be that size again.
But the difference in saying I want my old body back now and 2 years ago is that I can say that without shaming my current body and not making myself feel crap about my body now.
I may have been more physically healthy in that old photo but mentally I was not in a good place, especially in terms of my body image. I constantly wanted to be skinny. I wanted to have my collar bones, hip bones and ribs all sticking out. I wanted the biggest thigh gap ever. I wanted skinny arms and a skinny face. I was never content or happy with the size I was and my body shape. I always wanted somebody else’s body. Anyone else’s body but not mine. Phone background was always a random models body. I would tweet at least once a day ‘body goals’ with a random woman’s body I had found on tumblr. I now understand how unhealthy and damaging that was to my confidence and the way i viewed myself.
(September 2011 *i remember the exact dates because I remember exactly how insecure I felt and how scared I was to wear a skirt to this house party*)
People have said to me My WHOLE ENTIRE F*CKING LIFE ‘you’re so pretty but you’d be a 10/10 if you lost some weight’ ‘if you went gym it’s game over’ even when I was at my smallest weight (about a size UK 12) I still needed to ‘lose weight’ to be deemed beautiful. And it really did stick with me. I’d tell myself ‘right gym time because XYZ said ill be a 10/10 if I lost some weight’ ‘don’t eat that because you need to lose weight and be pretty’.
I wanted people to want me. I wanted to be accepted. I wanted to be beautiful and sexy not realising I already was and the only persons opinion that ACTUALLY mattered was my own.
And I will admit, those thoughts still pop up when somebody says something along those lines to me now. But I have now learnt that I’m never going to be everyone’s cup of tea. Somebody may think I’m too fat, too tall, too dark, too light, hairs too curly, my laugh is too loud and that is totally okay! Because all that truly matters is who I am on the inside and if my soul is pure.
My weight gain has empowered me so much and taught me that my weight doesn’t define me or my quality of life. I shouldn’t hide away, be ashamed and not live my best life just because of my size. Being a good person, having fun, spreading love and happiness is all that truly matters in life, and if you are a good person people will ALWAYS love you, no matter what you look like because we are so much more than our exterior.
And if I do want to lose weight then it has to be for me and my own health, not for somebody’s approval because people should love you for who you currently are, not their fantasised idea of who they want you to be.
I am the most confident I have ever been in my whole entire life despite being at my heaviest because YOUR BODY DOES NOT DEFINE YOUR BEAUTY. Live your best life right now, love your body as it is right now, don’t wait until you’ve lost weight or toned up to enjoy yourself, grab life by the balls and enjoyyyyyy every moment.
Remember, you are perfectly you. There is not one single human being on this earth who is you or can ever be you, nor can you ever be someone else. So just embrace yourself!
Antonia Jade x