Crying about it, but not necessarily in that “I should’ve seen that coming” kind of way but in a way where I finally felt free from trying to be someone that I wasn’t. About a year after that, I cut off the majority of my friends, which was one of the hardest things that I ever had to do. I genuinely cared about two of them so much. But the truth of the matter is that keeping people around that made me think negatively about every aspect of my life or disturbed my peace even in an infinitesimal way were not really the same people that I should keep around. Which brings me to my sophomore year of college.
It was a quiet year, I wrote much more journal entries, wrote more poems, focused on my major, which ironically was creative writing. In the beginning, I regretted my decision. I always wondered how my old friends were, they posted how much fun they were having without me, so I stayed off social media for a little bit. I continued to tell myself over and over that I made the decision of letting people go because I was finally putting myself first. Without the distractions, I did exactly that, and I got the chance to learn something that I would have never learned had I stayed the same. I experienced my first love: self-love. I ate all of my meals, gained some weight and felt beautiful. I slept better, my bones no longer ached, my grades were going up, I started a job and made new friends. I began to use some teeth whitening products until I found a natural one that was right for me without hurting my tooth enamel. My teeth still have some discoloration, but they have come a pretty long way from where they were when I was younger. Even my dentist was surprised. I don’t know if it is possible for one’s feet to shrink, but I think mine did because a size 10 in women fits me comfortably. I’m still big foot no matter what, though.
Why am I sharing this story? Because this little girl growing in my belly might eventually confront the same body image issues that I did as a teenager. Because my fifteen-year-old sister is confronting them now and I don’t want her to be afraid to talk about it. Because there are still some people who haven’t learned the true meaning of happiness. And because there may be someone who stumbles upon this post and has a similar story to share. I’m not saying that I might have handled things in the most perfect way, but had I not decided to invest in myself, I would have never known how to share my happiness with the people that I have met instead of looking for happiness from them. As a teenager, I thought I needed people to fill a void or that a boy would bring me happiness because it’s what I was made to believe. Happiness is not something that is given, it’s something you should already have and it’s what you do with that happiness that determines how you feel.
I learned that being content with what I have, especially when I was at my lowest, is why I am so grateful for all that I have now. Sometimes, I look at my boyfriend still in disbelief that after all this time, I’m blessed to have him in my life. He would ask me, “Why are you looking at me like that?” But how do you explain to someone this gratifying feeling of knowing that you have made good decisions for yourself, the greatest one being him? Had I held on too long to anger and pain, I would have missed ,an amazing opportunity of welcoming him into my life, and I wouldn’t be here preparing for the day when our daughter enters this world. I wish more people understood that no matter how many times they get hurt, it is their loss for holding on to their past instead of letting it go.