These are from my sister’s wedding in November 2007. I can’t believe how HUGE I look. I just see these want to curl up and die. No wonder my cousin told me I looked pregnant. I really did. It amazes me that even though this was almost 5 years ago just seeing these picture brings tears to my eyes.
Believe me, I know I have come along way. The girl in these pictures was a very broken girl. She was drowning in a pool of depression and self hatred. She felt suffocated in her life. Constantly struggled to find out who she was or who she would become.
It took a move of almost 400 miles and an emotionally abusive relationship to find the woman I have become now. I had to fight for myself to become myself. Sometimes I think I should thank my ex boyfriend for making me the fighter I am now. It would have been easy to become passive and stay where I was in that relationship.
A little background would probably help.
In June 2008, I graduated from Big Bend Community College with my transfer degree. On that same day I moved to Corvallis, Oregon to move in with a boyfriend. A guy that I went to high school with, we had been long distance “dating” since September 2007. We barely talked on the phone and actually spent a handful of real days together. He needed me because he was depressed and suicidal and I needed a way out.
I knew from the start that this wasn’t really wanted I wanted. I spend the days before the move drinking and spending every moments with my friends even an old “flame”. I felt like if I didn’t go I would never do anything. So I packed every thing that would fit in my car and headed to Oregon. It took all my might to stop myself from packing up all my stuff and taking off to Mexico. I seriously contemplated it for weeks even months.
A few weeks after I moved I got a job at Staples. I hated it. Even my manager would tell you that I was miserable. I had no friends, had trouble keeping in contact with my friends from Washington. I literally slept all day. Luckily, I started school at OSU a few weeks later. Unfortunately my depression controlled me and eventually I failed all my classes.
It wasn’t until November of that year that I met my lifesaver. A friend. I was slowly starting to make friends with my coworkers. But we never talked or hung out outside of work. Any time they would ask me out I’d find any and every excuse possible to get out of it, even lying. To be honest, I desperately wanted to hang out. Anytime I had suggested that I wanted to have friends my boyfriend would freak out. He’d give me the worst guilt trip. I would hear hours of him telling me how I was ruining his life, or how he had to work to pay my bills. How I wasn’t capable of being responsible. At first, I agreed. I believed him.
I was desperate for someone to want me. I was desperate for someone to care about me.
I’m not sure when exactly it happened sometime in the winter but back home my best friend and her boyfriend broke up. And I started texting with her ex boyfriend. At first it was about their relationship, he wanted me to tell him what she was doing and find out information on her. But eventually we became friends, in that friendship I was able to build up enough courage and strength to make real friendship with my coworkers. I also went to the doctor and got help with my depression.
At the same time I started building a friendship with one of my coworkers, my best friend in the whole world, Kate. I know she knows how much she means to me and how much I need her now, but I don’t think she knew how much I needed her then. As our friendship was blossoming, my relationship was smoldering.
He was continuously threatening to kill himself if I left, I had no doubt that he would follow through. He had already slit his writs on my birthday. I was terrified but I new I couldn’t do it anymore. On a rainy night in May, I left.
I was terrified and didn’t know how I would make it on my own. For a few weeks I even contemplated going back. Luckily, Kate was there for me, even though we didn’t know each other that well yet. She was my rock when I didn’t realize I had one. I could not have survived with her.
Starting that next day I picked myself up and just did my best. I continued to work at Staples, I continued to make friends. Friends that are now my family. Friends that I couldn’t get rid of if I tried. I am so thankful for them. I struggled to make it on my own. I didn’t have a boyfriend or mom to fall back on. All I had were some really good friends and a decent job.
From there I worked. I worked to heal myself. I worked to improve my life. I worked to become a better person. To become healthy.
I’m still working on the last one. But I am no longer a broken girl. I’m no longer weak.
I AM STRONG. I AM A FIGHTER. I AM A BEAUTIFUL WOMAN WHO DESERVES THE AMAZING LIFE I’VE BUILT FOR MYSELF.
So yes I was huge at my sister’s wedding, I weight around 230 lbs. And today, I weigh 206 lbs. Not that much difference.
Later I will tell you about how I met my husband and how he’s helped me become who I am today, but that’s a special story that gets its own post.