I’m 16 years old and this is my life struggle. I decided to lose weight one year ago, and I am NOT saying being fat is not okay. I personally was pushed to the point that it was impossible to be okay with how I looked. I’m ashamed to even admit that any of these pictures were me but as much as I’ve changed myself physically, I will emotionally always be this girl at heart. This fat girl. For the majority of my life I have struggled with my self esteem and being overweight, I was always considered obese, the only stores I could ever shop in were plus sized, I never fit into anything I wanted, and I’ve first handedly witness how terrible people can treat you when you’re not attractive. I was bullied for a huge part of my life, no one ever bothered to look twice at me and when they did, it was to laugh at me. I was spit at and had garbage thrown at me and to this day it is implanted in my mind the inhumane treatment I was given for being “fat.” I envied people with beautiful bodies, that could shop in stores and feel confident with the way that they looked. I was always given the “if you were skinny you could..” line so many times that there was nothing I desired more than to look at myself and feel skinny. I kept eating because as much as I was laughed at, I could go home and pick up something greasy or fattening and not be disappointed. I continued eating to fill a void in myself that had been there for so long, this loneliness that had consumed me from never being accepted by anyone. I had no friends, I sat by myself every single day and for so long sat on the sidelines and was invisible. I wanted to know how it felt for a boy to look at me, to feel my pants zip in the size I was content in, to hear someone say to me, “I love you, and I’m proud of you” I was forced to grow up with the belief that the way that I looked was not socially acceptable. One morning I woke up with the strength to change the amount of hate I had formed towards myself, to better my health, my self esteem and my emotional stability. It’s taken me an extremely long time to realize that every morning you must do things for yourself, not to feel socially accepted or loved by anyone else, not to fit into a size smaller, and not to impress anyone else. I have completely earned what I’ve done on my own. I do not have the most beautiful body, I’m extremely far from content with myself but I have recognized the amount of pain that I’ve put into losing weight. Losing weight has helped me become this person that I’ve always been deep down, but was always too ashamed to be to everyone else. I was trapped under so many layers of fat and embarrassment that I was always too scared to be who I was, in fear of the humiliation I already faced everyday. I can promise anyone that’s dealt with what I’ve dealt with that the people who laugh at you now, will be wishing you would give them the time of day. Love those who love you regardless of if you’re an 80 pound stick or 600 pounds and can’t see your feet! I am not what I have done, I am what I have overcome.