Everyone has a starting point. They are different for everyone, but we all have one.
My current “starting point” began in December 2019 and took several months to inch my way to that actual starting line.
After attending several get-togethers where my sole focus should have been the festivities of the holiday, I was having a difficult time being unselfish. Unselfish in the sense that my mind was always recirculating to myself. My body. My weight.
When I could have been busy finding gifts for my loved ones, I was busy trying to find clothes to buy for myself. I was so uncomfortable in my old closet that I felt I had to go out and buy a new piece to be worn to each holiday party.
When I could have been laughing and enjoying time spent with my loved ones, I was busy being self-conscious of my weight. Disappearing to remote rooms to not be seen. Stowing away when the cameras came out to document the memories others were making.
When I could have been treasuring every minute of my favorite season, witnessing the glittering lights, marveling at the beautiful decorations, feeling blessed for God’s greatest gift, I was busy comparing myself to every by-passer.
I had become so uncomfortable in my own body that that discomfort had turned to pure selfishness. It took me away from more important things in my life: my husband, my family, my friends, my community. I found myself no longer 100% committed to any other facet of my life due to the tiny whisper in the back of my head demanding notice. That subtle whisper drawing me back to a darker time in my life. That quietness saying, “You aren’t good enough.”
Yet, it was not until I couldn’t fasten the button of my self-deemed “fat pants” that things really took a turn in the right direction. A pair of jeans I had kept since my early-college days — the pair hidden deep in my closet because they had been too large for over six years — had become my go-to pair and were now too tight to button. I remember lying on my bed, arms above my head, sobbing in defeat.
And I realized that this woman was not who I am.
I have had a lot of dreams in life. I dreamed of marrying a man far too good for me. I dreamed of working for a place that made an impact on my community. I dreamed of becoming a mom, exploring the world, and living to a ripe, old age.
A few of my dreams have come to fruition, but I still have countless ones to chase. I realized that if I did not get control of my emotions, my mental state, and my physical health, some of those dreams were being tossed further and further from my grasp. I realized that poor choices and personal insecurities were costing me moments of happiness. My selfishness was taking a toll on my present, and my future.
And so I formulated a plan to change. A plan to become a better version of myself for the greater purpose of all those I may come in contact with — my family, friends, colleagues, etc.
This became my WHY: to re-establish who I am, internally, with kinder thoughts, more gratefulness, and greater contentment in order to become a better blessing to all externally. I decided to take my discomfort and produce a strong WHY.
I decided, as I wiped away my tears, that I was willing to walk up to the starting line and begin loving myself, flaws and all, for the woman I am, while also focusing on becoming a stronger, healthier version for my future.