Yesterday, my husband, Jed and I celebrated our 15th wedding anniversary. In thinking back to when I was a little girl, I never imagined I would find someone who loved me enough to marry, never mind feeling deserving as someone as wonderful as Jed is. Not only is he physically attractive, he is fun, kind, and probably the best genuine human being I have ever met. There are times I honestly have to pinch myself wondering if he is too good to be true.
Many of these dark feelings stem from my early elementary school years, because I had many painful experiences around the fact that I was an overweight child. Some of my earlier blogs detailed my experiences with rejection, noting I was the last person picked for any team, many of my peers called me names, I was left out of many groups, not invited to most parties, and many of my classmates laughed at me. I did not look good in any clothing that was “in-style” because the “plus-departments” did not have much of a selection. Boys rarely wanted to dance with me at school dances.
Thankfully, my social experiences at school improved greatly once I hit the 7th grade because I attended weight loss camp during the last 2 summers of elementary school, I played on the school soccer team in the 8th grade, and competed in color guard during all 4 years of high school and my first 2 years of college. Through high school and college, I rarely dated, and I certainly never had a longterm relationship as many of my friends did. Actually, the longest relationship I ever had (before Jed) lasted for a total of 4 months.
When I was about to complete my graduate degree at the age of 24, I met Jed. He was so different from anyone I had met because he never equated beauty with thinness as I had perceived was the standard among most men. I always felt comfortable around Jed. We fell in love quickly, and the weight gradually started to come on during our engagement years. On our wedding day, I was pushing 240 pounds. I was not sure if I gained this weight subconsciously as a way to test Jed’s commitment to me. Not only did he marry me, but he stuck with me through several cycles of weight loss and weight gain.
As stated in many of my blogs, I made a lifelong commitment to myself in 2008 to eat healthy and exercise regularly and have kept up with it since then. Due to this commitment, I have been at a healthier weight for the past 5 years. Most recently, I am finally starting to slowly inch within 10 pounds of my goal weight, which I can’t believe.
The amazing aspect about my husband is that he has always looked at me as if I was the most beautiful woman in the world – even during the obese years. To be honest, I struggle in seeing myself the way he sees me because of these inner demons who continue to send me the message that I am not good enough to be loved. This negativity within me has unfortunately held me back from feeling true happiness and satisfaction with myself, despite the fact I have achieved so many goals in my life.
I have focused so much energy on the outside of my body, it is now time for me to start paying attention to the inside. With the help of my support system, I made a plan to start healing my inner self. While going through this process is a challenge for me, I am hopeful this will make me and my family stronger than we already are.
July, 2015 (Photo credit: JMS Art & Photo)
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