Body Love


Ever since I was a child, I have been categorized as “the fat one”. I was always the object of relentless body shaming and bullying, whether it was from classmates, parents, or even random people wherever I went. I always tried not to let it bother me. Whether I was picked last for a sport in gym class or not invited to a birthday party, I kept a smile plastered on my face. When going for yearly checkups, doctors would try to push weight-loss programs and diets on me, and sometimes my mom would give in. At the age of eleven, I was counting my points and doing Weight Watchers. I was given a personal trainer and went to the gym about four times a week. In middle school, my self-esteem was practically nonexistent. I would wear baggy clothing and t-shirts so that people wouldn’t pay attention to me. I would dress like a mess as to not draw much attention to myself. I hated myself at this point, and I honestly believed my size defined my worth. After eighth grade, I realized this wasn’t true.

When I entered high school, I thought it was going to be terrible for me. I was afraid everyone would stare at how my fat body looked in our uniform, and that they would pay attention to every single flaw that I had. I was always worried about not having boys like me or having friends due to the size of my body. But then, I discovered that my body was beautiful and that I was lucky to have it. I realized I wasn’t unhealthy; I was just big. My health was great. I never ate unhealthily, and my size was genetic. I have exercised almost every day since I was young. I realized I didn’t need to hide behind my clothing, but I needed to express myself with it. I didn’t want to blend in anymore. I wanted to stand out.

I have never felt more comfortable in my own skin. I've realized that all of what I thought was being said about me behind my back wasn’t true and that my weight didn’t define me. My weight isn’t a burden to me, and I can do pretty much everything my peers can do. I began to love myself, and I love myself more and more every day. I will forever stand up for myself and for other people who identify with my weight because no one deserves to be talked down on due to their physical size.

By Bridget Fitzpatrick