Sunday, May 15, 2011

this is me

I guess if this blog is going to be credible, I am going to have to tell you a little more about my story.  Something I do not enjoy doing.  But, how does that saying go?  The truth will set you free?

We’ll see. 

It’s a pretty typical story if you ask me.  All throughout high school, I stood at a tall 5’2” and weighed a constant 115.  I was an athlete.  A basketball player, to be specific.  A state champion basketball player, to be more specific.  I practiced three hours a day and ate whatever my heart desired.  Chocolate was my weakness.  I told my parents often, “Gotta eat what I want while I still can.”  Boy, was I right.

I never thought I’d have a problem with my weight.  My mom has never weighed over 110, and she’s two inches taller than me.  My dad was definitely not overweight, either.  Between my genes and my love of sports, I thought I’d be fine.

This is me at my senior prom.  I am pretty sure my dress was a size 0.

The summer after graduation, I was determined to keep off the weight.  I started working out and training with my best friend who was going to play basketball for Arkansas Tech.  I even lost weight for the first time in my life, coming in at a lean 110.  My eating habits never changed that summer, and I knew the freshman 15 was no match for me.

Yeah, right.

I gained all 15 pounds my first semester of college.  Despite running miles every day and continuing my workout routine, the extra weight still came.  Looking back on it now, I know it had a lot to do with my diet, which was heavy in chocolate and ice cream.  However, I did not understand why it was happening now.

The second semester of my freshman year, I hit the gym hard and started watching my diet.  I still gained five more pounds. 

For the first time in my life, I hated myself.  At 130, I would wear only elastic-wasted skirts because I hated squeezing myself into jeans and shorts.  Shopping, once a beloved activity, was more of a nightmare.  And the mirror was my worst enemy.  I would cry to God often to take this burden from me, to help me lose weight.

And, that summer I did.  I started P90X, ran often, and ate rarely.  My job at a convenience store kept me busy and on my feet.  I lost ten pounds.  But, I was still unhappy.  Not only had the weight affected my body, but my mind.  I was now constantly comparing myself to the women around me.  The way I looked consumed my thoughts, and I never thought I looked good enough.

The fall semester of my sophomore year, I gained all my weight back plus some.  Twenty-five pounds this time.  Saying I was frustrated would be an understatement.  I worked out hours every day.  I ate way healthier than usual, splurging only on the weekends and special occasions.  What was wrong with me?  Why couldn’t I control this? 

Those around me had several theories.  Maybe I was “getting my woman figure.”  Or, I could have a thyroid disease.  But after several tests, doctors determined it was stress.

This is me fall semester of my sophomore year, elastic waist dress and all. BUT a great picture by my friend Katlyn.
So, I lightened my load for the second semester and didn’t gain or lose any more weight.  And, here I am, the summer between my sophomore and junior years.  This time around I know that any transformation cannot be solely physical.  If I am ever going to be happy with the way I look, I have got to change the way I see myself.

All I know is I cannot do it alone. 

For we are God’s masterpiece. He has created us anew in Christ Jesus, so we can do the good things he planned for us long ago.

~Ephesians 2:10

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