I’ve never been under-confident. I’ve always been someone who can ‘hold their own’. It probably can come across as cocky but there are very few social situations that I can think of where I feel like I would be shy, I think I’m quite a people person and I enjoy chatting to almost anyone – it’s not always that thrilling if they aren’t much of a talker however!Despite confidence in my ability to make friends/cope in new environments, I do have a fair share of body confidence issues. Feeling bad about my body isn’t so odd now that I’m a mum of two – one of those children being fairly new – and I still have a way to go before I’ve lost the weight I gained in pregnancy, but I can’t really remember NOT having these feelings towards my body.
I was constantly called fat in primary school (I wasn’t), I would cry and beg them not to say it – two boys who I will never quite fully forgive – but you know how it is, once you give a reaction, why would they stop?
By secondary school someone just had to mention the word ‘fat’ in context to me and it felt like my stomach was doing somersaults and my heart would pound and I’d fight back tears.
I wasn’t fiercely unpopular but I would often have disagreements with others and obviously the generic words thrown around in a pubescent school argument are along the lines of ‘fat’, ‘ugly’, ‘slag’, ‘your mum’, etc. It wouldn’t matter how many times someone told me or I told myself they were only saying it because they knew it would upset me, it still cut deep.
As I got older and after I had Noah, my body confidence grew. A friend of my mum’s once said ‘if people don’t like what they see, they won’t look’ and although I know it’s a load of rubbish it made me feel a bit better. I had new battles with my body in the form of stretch marks and overhang in the first few months which as a 17 year old were a bit upsetting as it wasn’t something others had in common but they soon faded and I found other ways of dressing that didn’t mean my stomach was on show (bye bye cropped and bodycon)
My weight gain in my pregnancy with Romey was far bigger than it was with No. The broken leg meant I wasn’t burning off anything that I ate, and due to my partner working long hours, there wasn’t someone to do a food shop or prep the dinner beforehand and a take away would sometimes be the easiest option.
In the later months all I could think about was cake. Red velvet, lemon, chocolate, carrot, angel. My kitchen became Patisserie Calorie pretty quickly. Noah had also developed a keen interest in baking so the need for cake and the home economics lessons tied in well together.
It’s all good and well when you are pregnant as not many midwives (although I know there are a few cold hearted sizeist midwives in existence) particularly want to make a pregnant lady feel shit about how much they weigh but it wasn’t long after I had Roman that I realised just how far I had to go to get back to anything near what I weighed 5 years ago.
It’s quite humiliating writing this and it’s not information I readily offer up but I DO eat healthily, making sure my children eat well really is paramount to me but I do have these couple of hours once they’re in bed and I’m alone watching Made in Chelsea/Towie/Love Island/insert name of an another trashy programme here, that I start to snack. I struggle with self control at times. I don’t enjoy it either. I can eat a whole Cadbury’s Oreo bar and be so disappointed with myself after because I’ve made myself feel sick and set myself back even further in terms of health.
It all came to a head the other week when I won a pair of Vintage Tommy Hilfiger jeans on eBay the other day for pennies. I was SO excited about them arriving and had planned all my cool, effortless outfits around this one staple pair of jeans. When they arrived I could get them on but the zip was a no go. If I had really tried to pull the zip up maybe I could have worn them but if I sat down they would’ve combusted immediately.
I cried hysterically. My partner came to my rescue and said all the right things that you would want someone to say in that situation but really and truly it’s crunch time. I’m not a stupid girl, I know what has to be done for me to be happier and more confident in myself. The amount of excuses I make to avoid doing anything about it is silly now. I’m 21 and should be at my peak – I don’t want to look back and think I wish I had done it then.
I am trying to start off quite realistic. Only lose a pound a week, drink lots of water, 10,000 steps a day etc. So we will see. It’s all good and well blaming my metabolism (thanks Grandma) and feeling jealous that my friends can eat whatever and still look fab, it’s just time to do something about it and have an achievement that I can be proud of.
So watch this space, it might just get a little bit smaller over the next few months 😶