When I was growing up, I didn't eat many chips. My mother would always make dinner and breakfast on weekends. She has raised many children and many at the same time, so I don't blame her anymore for not letting us snack a lot. Money was also always scarce so we appreciated what food we had, and made the most of it. Country cooking or southern homestyle cooking is what I grew up on always, so it was no surprise that by eighth grade, I was four foot nine inches and almost two hundred pounds. I also had braces and glasses simultaneously, but my weight was my biggest insecurity. I was fat shamed by my parents, stricken with negative comments about my body or the way I was made and even laughed at. Kids at school also made fun of me, but also bullied me in ways that made me uncomfortable, sexually. I was a child. A child with a growing body and the world is so terrible sometimes. I realize now as an adult, those bullies were heavily influenced by their parents and personal external circumstances. As an eight grader though, anticipating a new start at high school, I was not planning on being bullied to that level ever again.
School let out for the summer, and I basically stopped eating. My parents were neglectful and never had a good relationship with me, so I didn't bother going to them for help. I found out after a solid four days of zero food and water that if I didn't at least drink water, I would "pass out". I wasn't thinking clearly because I was so determined to be "pretty" and have lots of friends. New friends. Obviously, I didn't know what real friends were, but honestly, does any eighth grader? I was the only one out of my many siblings that was over weight, and my mind was the biggest bully of all.
I can remember I would drink over a gallon of water each day. I would have days where I would only eat a banana. Some days I would only consume a major amount of cough drops because they work well as laxatives. I, to this day, love dry roasted peanuts, but a whole container could last me over a month with me only consuming up to five per day. I worked out on an elliptical for hours each day, and spent a lot of time with Billy Blanks locked in the back of the house away from everyone. I still hated my body and thought I wasn't pretty enough after losing over 50 pounds and learning how to apply eyeliner.
My point is, the world will always judge us for our appearances. Whether we are adults or children, people will continue to be bullies. Although, if you have any interest in true self care, you cannot be a bully to yourself. If you got up this morning, I need you to know you are worthy of self care and confidence without denying yourself food. I must admit, later into my teenage years and into my adulthood I gained weight, shocker! It shouldn't be shameful for our bodies to change. Though, on days when I feel like I don't measure up, or maybe I won't succeed in my goals, I will shame myself for the food I consume. Chips and salsa. Salsa (or at least the kind I like) is ten calories every two tablespoons, and the chips are made of corn! I don't know about you, but I feel like my negative thought patterns about myself outweigh the risk of what I'm consuming. I need to look at it as a healthy snack, which it is (in moderation, like everything else). I come from a line of ancestors who had diabetes and I am so grateful that I have the privilege to eat anything, anytime. Be kind to yourself and know that there are for more things to focus on, than your brain trying to knock your chips and salsa. Sending love and peace of mind to all.