Tuesday, March 13, 2012

I remember. And I learn.

It turns out to be perfect that I missed my Sunday post this week with my weekly health and fitness update. I decided to hold off and figured I would post something on Tuesday (writing this on Sunday night) as I have scheduled a book review to go live on Monday, and just wasn't up for back-to-back-to-back posts.

Anyway, here I am, trying to precisely word where I am at this week (post-last week) and I'm lost. I'm stuck. I don't have that much to say. I don't know if it's because this morning (Sunday) I weighed in and dropped .2 lbs. Or because yesterday I ate just around 1/3 of my calories before noon. Oops.

So I'm honestly OK and happy enough with the .2 lbs. Seriously satisfied that the digits didn't go up at all.

And then as I sit here thinking, and deciding what to write about my first and second experiences with my new Zumba for Wii workout.

And I check Write on Edge. The prompt is as follows:

This week we’d like you to write about a time you found yourself comparing yourself, unfavorably, with someone else.  Focus on how the comparison affected you, negatively or positively.

Well, thank you very much.

I've always been the chunky girl. Even when I was at what I now can look at and define as "my skinniest," I was the chunky one.

Pictures of myself from a trip with friends to Puerto Rico. South Beach. Cancun.

I was happy. But was I?

I was never the one in the two-piece suit. Always in the matronly one-piece.

Yes, in my early twenties I hung out with friends who flashed more skin than I'd ever dare.

And I loved these friends.

But I'd be lying if I said I didn't compare myself to them sometimes.

I'd be lying if I said that when I got to college and looked at the friends of mine who were able to get dressed in pretty much anything without an inch or more of flab or fat showing because they barely had any to spare.

We'd go out, I'd feel like I was dressed to the nines - as much as one could be in college in the '90s - and I'd look in the mirror and feel that I was ready to go. The music was blaring. The wristbands were on (acquired under the radar, I was definitely not 21 yet) and there I was. And then I'd get in. Everyone was dancing. I was, too. I had fun. I felt free. I felt friendships. I'm honest, they were and are legitimate. I'm still friends with these people. Friendship and a sisterhood before so much else.

It wasn't them. It wasn't their fault. They never looked at me as anyone but me. They never took an inch of their bare skin and intentionally made me feel like shit.

I did it to myself. 100%. Completely me.

I put myself in a corner at mixers and crush parties. Not always - mind you - but sometimes. Sometimes my mind got the better of me and won.

Was I depressed? No - not exactly. But I probably had a mild state of it. Between that and the generalized anxiety that would go undiagnosed for years to come, I'm sure my world felt to me as lame as it could. And I did it all to myself.

Have I been there again as an adult? Yes. As a mom? Yes. Do I want my daughter to EVER feel that way? NO. N-to the -O. Will she? Sadly, sure. I'm sure she will. I hope that I give her the independence and strong will to fight it and avoid it. All girls feel it now and then. I felt it in my childhood. My junior high years. High school. College. And beyond.

But now I'm fighting it. It flashes back to me now and again. That girl who lives somewhere inside. She's not gone. I know she'll never truly disappear. But that's okay. I'm supposed to live with her. I'm supposed to teach her. Guide her.

And with the effort I am putting in these days for myself. For my health. My mindset. My fitspiration. I hope all of that combined with being a mother to an amazing young girl will help me keep my own little girl inside, locked away and feeling secure enough to never have to come out and play again. Because she's not fun. She's sad. She's lonely. And she doesn't belong here.

Because the stronger me wins out. She stands tall. Well, as tall as my 5' 2-1/2" frame can stand these days.

I think I might have to start wearing heels again ...


  1. You've been doing great, Andrea. Of course there will be hard days, but let them go and refocus the following day and you'll be just fine :-) And remember a bikini can't give you an amazing personality and heart.

  2. I appreciate the honesty and raw emotion in this post. And I feel like your words are in my story too. Still learning how to be me, comfortably.

  3. I have felt as you have felt. Never pretty enough. Always sucking in and covering up.

    And in those rare moments of release, I hate that I can't feel that way all the time.

    This speaks to me. So many of us have felt exactly this way.

  4. Andrea,

    You are not alone in these feelings. I still compare myself to other women both in physical ways and others. My post for this prompt was a different kind of comparison, but still same feelings of inadequacy.


  5. Isn't it so frustrating to know that our daughters might some day go through the same BS just because they are women, and we tend to give ourselves such a hard time?

    I hear you babe. I feel inadequate ALL.THE.TIME. Trying to handle that.

    Good luck to us both! Love ya girl.

  6. I think every woman tall, short, thin or heavy- can relate to this post. Is it society drilling it into our head? Or just being a woman? I try my hardest to build a strong self-esteem in my girls- but I still worry as we quickly approach the preteen years. The last thing I want (or any mother wants) is for them to feel inadequate in any way.

  7. The crazy thing is that those girls likely felt (still do) the exact same way. I'm sure we all do at some point... We are human. To say otherwise is a great fairytale. We compare our beginnings to someone else's middle or end. We compare our inside to the polished outward perfection someone else displays.... Apples and oranges.

    It's not great or even fair to be the one compared to lol like with my healthy eating stuff. THE most important is just being a healthy you!! That looks a thousand different ways on a thousand different people... If you know what I mean. I'm rambling.... I'll step away :) before I do, your heart and spirit shine so very bright. Have no doubt that others compare themselves to your light! I also know how important it is to feel good about you <3

    Ok. I'm done

  8. I so understand this. I wrote about body image, too, and I can identify with what you're saying here.

    It's terrifying, as mothers of daughters, to look back at those thoughts and think forward to the times they will be faced with them as well.

  9. I'm glad you can fight it now.

    I was so incredibly insecure when I was younger. I'd love to go back and shake myself and change how I behaved back then.

    Every now and then, I get flashes of it, too- but I can shake it off. And you can, too!

  10. .2 is .2.... Be proud! I can relate to so much of this... because it's all about perception... I always THOUGHT I was the chunky one... hiding in pictures... I did wear two-peices for a few years in my early 20's but still hid... a few weekends ago, I came across a picture of me in a bikini on Spring Break. I remember exactly when the photo was taken. I purposely stood in the middle, trying to pull the other girls around me... I thought they looked so much better than me. NOW I can see I was DAMN Hot... I was the one with the classic figure... yes, my boobs were smaller and my hips bigger, but I'm the one closest to the hourglass... and I never thought I measured up... Still don't! It was huge for me to wear a swimsuit with no skirt last year!

  11. You are so right. It really is an inside issue. I always thought I was too short and too skinny. I had to learn to enjoy how I am built or not built.

  12. Here's something funny... as I've gotten older I've become more insecure about the way I look. Crazy right! I think a lot of is that I've gained weight and it just doesn't go away.
    I think that as women we just naturally compare ourselves to others. I'm not sure why... maybe it's just the way we are.

  13. Hi Andrea,
    I found your blog via JDaniel4s Mom... i love it. you are so honest.
    your post over at JDaniel4s Mom inspired me to list the little things i want to take note of.
    so thanks


  14. May your stronger you keep forging ahead!

  15. I know that girl... the one on the inside... although for me, I wasn't the "chunky" one, I was always the "stick-thin, flat-chested, frizzy-haired" one... I was never dressed in the "hip" clothes (mostly because my mom said "no way in hell am I spending that much money on clothes!" and I can't blame her - she also wouldn't buy half the stuff my friends wore, as it was often too revealing. *side note, accidentally typed "whore" instead of wore... it fit my mindset though! ;) oops!) and even now, at 31 with an awesome hubs, an amazing daughter, and another on the way? I still feel insecure quite often about my lack of boobs, that my tummy isn't flat & toned, that my hair is STILL often a frizzy mess... and I remind myself that it DOESN'T MATTER, but some days, that girl starts whispering in my ear, and it's hard to shake her.

    I'm so glad that you're telling that girl to take a hike when needed, and doing things for YOU to make you feel better about yourself. so happy for you. kick some ass!! :) xo


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