Trigger Warning - talk about an accident, scale numbers & stretch marks.
Two years ago, I fit into both the bra and panties perfectly. In fact, this was my FAVORITE bra. And today, my boobs are falling out of the bra and my underwear covers half of my ass. Around 120lbs, I thought I was perfect. I loved my body, I loved my friends, and I honestly loved life. After high school graduation, the guy I had been involved with for 5 years, through long distance, ended things with me. Though we fought on and off the entire 5 years, even to the point where we dated people in between, I always had thought he’d be the one. He was the one I would eventually fly to Florida from Michigan to be with, or wherever else he ended up. Around the same time, my sister and her new born moved back home, where I was still living. I took on the role of babysitting full-time, to the point where people think I am his mother. It was exhausting, and due to lack of time between babysitting, family events, and college, I lost all my friends. I lost every single one of them, including the girl I had been best friends with since 8th grade, and thought I would grow old with. I literally thought we would be friends forever. As I walked through this last year of my life, I noticed a huge change - not just in my body, though I am now weighing in at 170lb. I was friends with people I hated in high school, I put more emphasis on school but never followed through. I even continued talking to guys, but became less picky and more racy; sending nudes & talking to multiple guys. I lost values and my life spiraled down into hate, dishonesty, and honestly, just pure craziness. I would have days where I’d be friends with everyone, including old friends, then I’d have days where I wouldn’t even hear my phone go off. I lost sight of who I was, and even confessed to a friend that I would I was having an identity crisis. The pressure on me of measuring up to my older sisters, raising my nephew, getting good grades, etc was drowning me. And the pain of losing not just all of my friends, but the two most valued people in my life nearly killed me. A month ago, one of my good friends from high school – who I had lost contact with – was killed by a drunk driver, along with a friend of his. Getting that text that said “it was Dakota in the accident” ripped my heart apart. I cried for days, and am even crying writing this. Dakota called me mom in high school because I was so protective of him. I loved him as if he were my child, having met him his freshman year & being a year older. He always had a smile on his face and always found a way to make people laugh. I could go on for days about the happiness I found in him, but back to my main point – Dakota LOVED God. When he died, I was angry. I attended his viewing & his funeral, his candlelight vigil and I’ll be attending a softball game and 5k race in his honor later this month. But through all of the support, I was angry. I blamed God and screamed and cried and lost sight of everything else bad in my life. This last month of my life has been about Dakota. However, he and God had a plan. They have been working God into my life through this experience. I started attending church again. Last week, I bought my first adult bible. I pray almost daily now. I have found God and my heart is finally healing – when I have been missing something for 2 years now and kept thinking it was my ex & ex friend. All along, it was God. I am feeling healed and it’s all because I have God in my life again.
I am submitting this photo because I was recently made aware of my stretch marks, as if it’s anyone else’s business. Though you can hardly see in this photo, they are red & dark purple lines on the inside of my legs and on my waist. I was at church, wearing a dress, and my dad pointed to the ones on my legs and said “Be careful you don’t get too big because these might not go away.” I am submitting this photo because I love myself now because God loved me first, not because a friend or boy loved me. I am submitting this to show you that I have had a hell of a life this last year or so, but I still know that loving myself is the only option I have. If you can’t love yourself – who will? I am submitting this to remind everyone who hates anything about their body that there are bigger things in life to worry about. It took losing a good friend of mine to remind myself who I am and how I should act. Please don’t wait that long to love yourself.
BE BRAVE! JOIN THE BODY PEACE REVOLUTION!