“I am not my stomach”

Project Description:

Fashion has always been a huge part of my life. My hobby, pass time, and my career. But my insecurity of feeling that I was too big had always left a void for my passion. I only loved to dress other people because I was too insecure about the way I looked myself.

I was bullied often as a high school student. Not so much for how heavy I was, or because I was ‘fat’, but because I was bold. But I was oddly proportioned and people noticed that the way I dressed didn’t exactly fit me. I often picked out clothing that was a size too big to cloak my stomach. But people still commented on the way I looked.

It was at age sixteen that I came to the conclusion of facing my insecurity, and I began to realize that others were commenting on my clothes because they were too big or not fitting for myself, not because they thought I looked wrong in the it. I realized that I met the worst bully of my high school many years before that,
it was myself.

Every time someone said something about my clothing they were hinting I just wear a smaller size.

Every time someone asked if I was feeling all right from my heavy breathing I took it as an internalization of “You’re being too loud”

I was my worst enemy, and I knew that I hated the way my stomach looked.

After realizing that I was internalizing most of the comments made I began to take chances and challenge myself to step out of my comfort zone. I didn’t want my stomach to get the best of me any longer and stop me from enjoying what I loved most.

I was tired of contemplating skipping meals to lose my stomach, or exercising more than I should, or not enjoying the food I ate to diet. I guess I could say I was tired of caring what I thought of my stomach.

My weight still gets the best of me, and I believe that insecurities don’t completely disappear once you face them. You just become more aware of them. At times I’ll talk myself out of buying a shirt because I think it could look off, but other times I take the chance of making a purchase I’m hesitant about, and it often pays off in a positive way.

I’ve learned that I am not my stomach, and it is just a part of me.