We were sitting in the living room, two of us on our laptops, another reading psychology, when one of the girls announced that she was looking at clothing online.
“These girls have perfect bodies; they make me so jealous.”
I glanced over to her laptop to see a page of denim advertisements, with girls my height modelling size two jeans. And, somehow, my thinking paused. I had to understand that she said she was jealous, that that meant that she felt inadequate in comparison. For some odd reason, it didn’t click in my mind that you should be jealous of the models, so I had to really look inside myself to see how I could empathise. Well, after looking back through the years, I was able to understand a little about what she was talking about.
It wasn’t too many years ago when I was a very insecure person. The span of middle school and early high school were filled with self-loathing. My too fuzzy of red hair; my curvy frame; my freckles; my acne; my big feet and height. I would try to copy what models in all of the silly teen magazines would wear, but I would only look clownish in my hand-me-down clothes and size nine jeans. And when I began to gain more weight, until I was at a size thirteen, I remember being incredibly upset. But, the thing that separates me from her was that she said she was jealous of the models because they made her feel bad. I, on the other hand, was only angry at myself for not being who I wanted to be.
Of course, time passes, and to fully grow, you must develop your personality to all that it can be. It’s these changes and personal growth that allow you to become the person you’re meant to be. It’s what separates people that I know who still act like they did in eighth grade and those who are now adults. Well, I practically became an adult during my junior year. It was a year when I threw away a lot of my old self that I was unhappy with and began to adopt a newer version of myself, which allowed me to mature up pretty fast. Now, during this time, I learned to fully appreciate myself. I was able to accept that this was who I was–a tall, curvy girl with giant, red hair. And, acceptance leads to love, now doesn’t it?
Over the past summer and beginning months of university, it has become even easier to love myself (except for the acne I’ve suddenly gotten during university; still trying to figure out how that happened). I’m slowly stepping into a new style that I’m more comfortable with, and I’ve begun to feel even more mature and ready to face my future. The anger that I once felt towards myself and my image are nearly gone. Sure, they may never leave, but I have become much happier with myself, and that must count for something.
So, having kept away from any self-loathing for the past couple of years, it seemed like a distant memory of not being satisfied with myself. And it seemed even more odd that someone should be jealous of the models. Yes, they do have the “perfect” body by today’s standards, but I’m okay with being their height but a size 12 rather than a 2. And I’m definitely okay with my now giant red hair (though it’s still shorter than I like it to be, but it will grow).
Everything equalled up to an interesting realisation, though. Even when you think that you are inadequate, let me assure you that your thought process can change on that. Perhaps you need only be persistent–not in removing those thoughts, but replacing them.