This will be the most personal blog post I’ve done. I’ve decided to take a turn with my blog coming from being professional to semi-personal. This may also be the longest post you’re about to read from my blog. What is it about? It’s me, my body, and I.
I was born with lighter skin and my hair wasn’t exactly your typical black Asian hair. I grew up to be darker, skinny, thick hair, two big front teeth, and I was totally insecure about my knees. Throughout my childhood I was a small and skinny little person. My parents’ friends were always trying to feed me thinking I didn’t eat enough. I ate enough. I played with my mother’s makeup all the time, especially lipstick. She used to put me in dresses and tutus, curl my hair, and applied makeup on me. I loved it. I loved being a girly girl. I loved being a princess (still do). I developed at the age of 11 and I wasn’t sure if I liked that. My mom wouldn’t even let me shave my legs! It wasn’t happening to my friends and I was embarrassed. I decided to dress less girly, wore looser clothing and my hair in a ponytail. If you know me now, you’ll notice that I almost never wear my hair up unless I’m at the gym, cooking or cleaning. I can be hotter than the sun outside and I would probably still keep my hair down.
Then middle school happened. I became a girly girl again. I became more comfortable with my body. Physically I developed into a woman, mentally I was still a child. I had Barbies and Tamagotchis for goodness sake! It’s totally different in this day and age now. I no longer shop in the children’s department, now I was getting my clothes from stores like Rave and Kat Man Du. I don’t know if those stores are still around, but they sold clothes that high school/college girls would wear. You guys…I was only 12. At this age I was wearing department store or high-end brands of makeup.
I entered high school and my self-esteem went down…way down. I had a lot of Asian friends and I hated I mean HATED that I didn’t look like them. They were light skin, thin hair, slanted to slightly slanted eyes, smaller breasts…why do I look so different? Why don’t I look “Asian?” At this time I was about 15 and I was a size 0. Zero. *Never again* My eating behavior changed. I think I was depressed and didn’t realize it. I was 15 what did I know about depression? I went up 5 dress sizes in a year. Listen, I may have went up 5 dress sizes, but I could whoop some butt in badminton. Is that a nerd sport?
Then I turned 18. After gaining all this weight, family began to tease me and made me feel awful about myself. It didn’t make me feel any better. It made feel worse and I believe I got some sort of eating disorder. I ate like there was no tomorrow. I was hiding Little Debbies in my dresser drawers. How sad is that? I continued to gain weight. Pants weren’t fitting right. I hated all my clothes. I hated my body. It didn’t help that I had a grandma who always called me fat, an uncle who always teased me every time I picked up a spoon, and family friends judging my body. I remember my father was in the CCU and I was in the waiting room with a couple of family friends. One of them decided to compare how “fat” I was to her daughter. How dare you? How DARE YOU? I was worried if I will ever see my father conscious again and you’re there to judge my body? Shame. I cried myself to sleep that night hurting for two reasons.
In my early 20s I wasn’t quite the size I wanted to be. Makeup always made me feel better, but it was just hiding what I was ashamed of. I wondered, “How could my boyfriend love me?” I wanted to hide, I didn’t want friends to see me. Then “depression” came. My body was feeling ill and weak and I couldn’t figure out why. I was afraid to see the doctor, but I did. I didn’t like her very much for she barely looked at me at all and I swear she was typing my symptoms into WebMD.com. She finally said I had depression. She subscribed me all kinds of anti-depressants. I never wanted to take them. What did it do? All it did was numb my feelings and I was just a breathing body. Oh, and the cherry on top of this? I was told that I was on the borderline of having diabetes and my heart is at risk. I was 22! It took one day and one person to reverse this “depression.” I haven’t thanked her yet, but I’ve been planning on doing something nice for her. I didn’t want diabetes and I didn’t want to die of heart disease in my 20s so I dropped 40 pounds in less than a year. It can be done. First step, quit the soda. Next step, divorce Little Debbie. Apparently I look like a different person now. People I used to work with would congratulate me on my new body. My boyfriend’s (at the time) friend whom I met plenty of times thought I was a whole new girlfriend.
Twenty-four years old, just started working on my bachelors, and just found out that I got type 2 diabetes. I think my doctor was expecting me to cry and all I said was, “okay.” I had to take oral medication to control it. The first few weeks of taking it was awful. If you’re a woman and just started taking these you would think you’re pregnant. I can’t even begin to explain how it made me feel.
Twenty-seven…I am so much more active. I’ve never felt so healthy in my life! I think I am more happier, confident, and motivated than ever. However, I still see some of my imperfections. These darn stretch marks! What’s with this stupid muffin top? Can’t I just cut you off? I still wear makeup, but less of it now compared to 3 or more years ago. I will probably always wear it, but I’ll have my days when I run errands in my sweats, hair up, and no make-up. Who am I trying to pick up at Publix? Nobody. *insert laughter*
So, why did I decide to blog about this? I don’t watch a lot of television, but when I do I watch The Today Show. I woke up this morning and they were doing something called, “No make-up Monday” and “#LoveYourSelfie.” The anchors went bare on their face including Dr. Oz. I looked up on Twitter and Instagram #LoveYourSelfie and saw all these natural beauties. How inspiring. I don’t know these people, but it amazed me. It lifted me up a some.
I took that this morning. I will tell you the Samsung Galaxy Note 3 does not have the best front facing camera. Anyways I’m not trying to bash a phone, I’m just taking a step into becoming more confident about my natural body. Sure I don’t have the tummy (or height) of Adriana Lima, but I will be the best that I can be.
Her. She posed for Glamour Magazine in the September 2009 issue found on page 194. She’s not a model or anybody famous, she’s a person like you and I. If I could write a personal letter to thank her for inspiring me then I would. Read the story here: Glamour.com
So what do you do when you wake up and have that “ugly” or “fat” day? Take a deep breath. Keep yourself occupied. Pick up a hobby. Hug somebody. Compliment a stranger. Set a goal that you can reach that you know will make you proud of yourself. STOP complaining about your body parts because nobody wants to hear it. And my gosh if that guy doesn’t like your physical appearance than boo-hoo, screw him. You are you. You are beautiful.
This is my story. A story I was once ashamed to speak of. I hope it has inspired someone to not feel alone or ashamed. I hope it has made someone smile. If I can be a tough cookie (or cupcake) through all this then I am so sure YOU can be too.
Smile, I hope you have a gorgeous day.