I came across this old school picture of me from 6th grade and it brought back a flood of memories….I think it’s easy to get caught up in “you’ve always” when people see where you are rather than where you started. Reminders are good. Two years ago from this weekend I was working the Isolatorfitness booth at the Arnold with another girl who was also going through prep. I was about 4 weeks out from my show. “It’s easier for you though”, she said, “you’ve always been thin.” I stared at her, “I have?”…she stuttered…”well you look like you have an athletic build and…” her voice trailed off.
I collected my thoughts and calmly said, “I’ve never been always anything except really wanting to be more because I felt I wasn’t enough. Not for anyone else, but to me.” Her words stung because I had worked hard to create this physique and it wasn’t a gift I was given. And not the being pretty or fit is super important, but learning to find peace, and strength, and balance and acceptance is. So I told her about my journey, and how I had been struggling since age 12 with my appearance and as a result my self esteem. It’s a vicious cycle. I told her how I’d been consistently inconsistent by being overweight, too skinny, a smoker and everything unhealthy in between…including a nerdy 6th grader WANTING to rock those nerd glasses and not feel like an actual nerd. It’s taken almost 40 years to fall for this girl. It has never been “me always”….until now.