“Is fat really the worst thing a human can be? Worse than vindictive, jealous, shallow, vain, boring or cruel?”
JK Rowling, she’s an author who writes and publishes, in 1997, the first book in her Harry Potter series (which as a book worm and magic filled heart, you’ll love) is quoted saying this in 2006. I wish you could read this now at 14. After years of body loathing, would it make a difference? Probably not with your strong willed, defiant mindset. However I’d like to have seen your reaction if you had read it?
Teenage years are a difficult period to have body confidence. Vanity, looks, appearance and your ‘brand’ are so important. You have a brain, a good one and you don’t see how much of a gift this is. Your mum is pushing you to stay part of the maths challenge group you think is geeky, embarassing and takes up your lunch breaks. Your dad is encouraging you to remove the beauty qualifications you are desperate to do from your head and go to university in another country. He wants you to travel the world and take every opportunity you are given.
At the moment you see them as blocking your dreams but all they are trying to do is ensure you actually live them using gifts you’ve been so luckily given.
I wonder how your face looks now reading this letter. In fact I know. Your eyes will roll and you’ll be determined to prove me wrong even if in your heart of hearts you know I’m right. You hate being dependant on anyone so taking advice is a last, if ever resort for you.
In a few short paragraphs I’ve shown you who you are – intelligent, determined, self reliant with a great imagination yet all you see is the body you hate.
You are about to embark on the first journey of teenage romance as well as prepare for your higher exams. You’ve just quit dancing which your teacher and mum saw coming and are hopeful it’s a phase. It’s not and you’ll regret this in 10-15 years but by telling you this I’m likely pushing you further away from the idea.
Who knows if by staying a dancer you’d have a better relationship with your body as you’d value fitness and nutrition or if, caught up in that world, you’d be constantly comparing yourself to other dancers body’s and be worse than you are now?
Your self loathing is causing you to be jealous and moody. You aren’t appreciating the amazing things you have.
I promise you happiness isn’t size specific. You won’t suddenly lose that moody streak if you lose 2 stones. At 9 or 10 stones you don’t have 2 stones to lose. Don’t start that weight watchers class, if you ignore everything else please listen to this. If you join it begins your journey of yo yo dieting and your mental health will suffer badly.
Every girl in your class is going through the same body confidence worries. Even if you think they are so thin and you are so fat, they will hate that their boobs haven’t grown like yours, they will hate that you somehow missed the spotty phase and have glowing skin and likely most of all they hate their permed damaged, bleached hair and constantly dream of the waist length shiny dark hair you have and don’t notice.
There is no one perfect girl in that school. There is no one perfect girl anywhere, they don’t exist. We all have flaws.
The next few years will be the best and worst of your life. In teenage terms. You’ll find this patronising but as I’m your older self and although I’ve matured slightly I still have that same determined streak so I will tell you anyway!
I don’t want you to change anything or live with regrets but a few tweaks would do;
1) try and do everything with kindness, realise the world doesn’t owe you anything
2) stay in the maths challenge, your good at it and it will give you so many more opportunities. It’s geeky but geeky is cool….. honestly 🤓
3) your stomach is not fat, like seriously!! But even if it was, it doesn’t define you. Your intelligence, friendships and your crazy sense of humour do. Focus on these. Make these your brand!
3) a smarmy red head is about to turn your world upside down. He’s not amazing and your world won’t collapse without him. Don’t erase this part from your life, just make sure you punch his face in rather than cry when it all ends 😂😂. I promise it will be worth it 💋💋