Honestly I’ve always had issues with the way I looked. When I was a teenager around 13/14 years of old, I always thought I was ugly, and that if I was skinny boys my own age would like me back, I can see myself in my head now clearly grabbing at my calves, or looking with despair at my nose, prodding and poking at it, as though it would magically turn to plastacine and I’d be able to just reshape it. See the thing is I was a tiny, athletic looking, but due to being bought up riding horses my legs were pretty muscular and I always thought they were fat, like I thought the rest of me was. That way of thinking has been with me throughout. It would become obsessional at certain points too, fixating on certain parts of myself, my nose, my muscular thighs, my arms, my eyes are too small, the freckles on my hands, my knees, being self conscious about various scars etc.
Then I changed my eating at the age of 16/17. An average weekday menu would like this.
Two cups of coffee and three cigarettes
Break at college
Hot chocolate, packet of monster munch and two cigarettes
Coffee and cigarettes
Coffee and more cigarettes throughout.
When I started working I went up to two meals a day and snacks and still remained a tiny size 6. To be fair looking back, I was unhealthily slim. You could see my ribs in places, I mean I could count them by running my finger over them gently. People always had a comment about how slim I was. I didn’t care though, because I ate when I was hungry, I had high cheek bones from my mother and I got a lot of male attention. I think one of the most hateful things anyone ever said to me in regards to my weight was that I looked like an anorexic heroin addict. It’s not just the fact that the dick head had had the audacity to comment about my weight during an argument but it’s the fact he used serious illnesses, an eating disorder and an addiction in a derogatory manner as an insult just to one up me. I mean for fucksake I was the junk food Queen! After my shift on Fridays and Saturdays I’d always make a pitstop at the Time Piece burger van for a hotdog or roll into Maccy-ds with the ladies from work for cheeky cheese free burger. I’d always take a packet of sweets or something to snack on and share with my friend and head doorman too. I had and still do have issues with certain food but that’s another story for another post but ultimately…I ate whatever I wanted when I was hungry. I took after my father.
This is me circa Exeter 2011 tiny tiny.
Moving to Exeter was magic for me, it did wonders for myself esteem truth be told, sure there was still plenty of days where I wished I looked different, where I didn’t feel good enough and like I just, well never quite measure up but those moments were few and far between compared to how my life was before the move. I was always the ugly best friend, or they always preferred my best friend. I was always comparing my lot to theirs. I just felt so worthless and ugly and unwanted compared to everyone else. It’s like they could see my cracks where I’d broken. I reinvented myself when I moved further south to Exeter. I became the person I always wanted to be. I stopped comparing myself, my looks anyway to other people’s. I became confident too. No longer did I walk down the street with my eyes cast to the floor even during a break down with mascara streaked down my face I walked with my head held high marching up Exeter high street haha. So even through the chaos I still had that. My self esteem wasn’t through the floor anymore. I still thought I was first class fuck up and full time crazy but hey at least I could look people in the eyes and look in the mirror without wanting to smash it every time I put my make-up on.
However all of that’s gone now. Four years ago I was a healthy size 8, when I got admitted to the psychiatric hospital for the first time and I ended up taking Olanzapine again.
Me a few months before the above hospital admission.
Fair play it is a wonder drug, it calmed me and soothed my anxiety and agitation, kept my paranoia at bay etcetera, the only draw back for me, was the fact I piled on weight with it and not because it gave me the munchies either, it didn’t. Sedatives/antipsychotics are notorious for weight gain and they slow your whole metabolic rate down. I genuinely barely eat. So as if I didn’t feel completely shit as it was about everything, my weight gain has made me even more miserable and self conscious. I feel embarrassed and ashamed of how I look now, I’m so self conscious, and feel so unattractive, not that I would want to pursue anything right now anyway but it’s how I perceive myself that’s the problem. I suppose thats why i’ve taken to dying my hair wild colours, because I feel that it detracts peoples attention from my chubby cheeks and the rest of my flaws.
And it doesn’t help matters when people ask me when I’m due thinking that I’m pregnant, because that’s where I carry my weight-on my stomach. Plus thanks to whatever the hell is going on inside of my body, making my stomach swell and go solid, it makes people presume I’m pregnant even more.
It’s not solely the aesthetics that are contributing to my low self esteem although that doesn’t help matters either. I just feel crappy about myself in general, that no one likes me, that I come across badly, that there’s nothing good or likeable about me what so ever, that i’m an annoying pain in the arse, I feel this overwhelming urge to apologize for being me constantly, for being so flawed.
I’m not on such a high dosage of Olanzapine anymore and only take it as a PRN alongside a sleeping tablet occasionally when I’ve had enough of my insomnia (I have to take the two together otherwise they don’t work) I built up a resistance to it and it just doesn’t do squat for any of my symptoms. I’ve lost a bit of weight since stopping it, but ultimately being slim isn’t going to miraculously change how I feel on the inside. Only therapy will do that. Self help. Learning to like myself so I stop apologising for being me. Any tips on how to improve myself esteem would be welcomed.
As is customary with each of my posts here is a song. I’ve gotten really into Larkin Poe at the moment and the soul in this broads voice is phenomenal. Plus the cat has enjoyed me singing it to the point she rubs up against my legs (ear worm) haha.
And an old favourite
Featured image by Aegis.