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Body Confidence: The Most Honest and Transparent Post I've Ever Written

Body Confidence: The Most Honest and Transparent Post I've Ever Written is a way for you to get to know me better!

I'm about to get more honest and transparent than I have on any other post I've written before, in the past and now.  Just call me Casper.

I have made the decision to talk about some very personal things in my life because not only do I want to be honest with myself but, I want to open these topics up for discussion.

I'd really like for you to get to know me better and what better way to do that than to wear my heart on my sleeve.  I guess what I'm saying is, I don't just want to be some imaginary women behind a computer screen.  I want you to know the "real" me.

I think you'll be able to relate to a lot of struggles I've had with self-esteem, body confidence, and setting realistic health goals that I can achieve.

It's important you know that I'm a real person.  I'm not perfect by any means and would never want you to think I am.

It's important for me to know that I'm on this journey with you, not ahead of you!  I'm starting from the ground up too.  I want to walk beside you in this and root for you, just as you root for me.

It doesn't matter that we might be seemingly strangers on the surface.  It doesn't matter that I haven't met you and maybe never will.  What matters is that we are in this together!

Struggles With Eating Disorders and Feeling "Fat"

I feel like in order to move forward positively into the future, I must address my past, and that includes talking about some uncomfortable topics.  One of those topics is my struggles with eating disorders and feeling "fat."

Nowadays, it's taboo to even mention the word "fat" for fear of offending someone or coming across as judgmental.

On this blog, I'm going to be using that word a lot.  The reason being, I don't want to give this word power anymore.  By saying we hate that word or are afraid to use it in general, we give it more power than what it really has.

Also, in regards to the word "fat," I think sometimes we don't want to admit to ourselves that we have those feelings or negative thoughts about ourselves.

I do sometimes feel "fat" and that's my reality.  I feel like a lot of women can relate to that.

Muscular Little Legs

My struggles with eating disorders began back in middle school.  I remember the first time a boy told me that I had fat legs now, whereas the year before my legs were skinny.

He said it in front of a lot of people too and I was really embarrassed and thought maybe I did indeed, have fat legs.

Of course, now I have the good sense to realize that my legs were just muscular.  I have muscular little legs and calves.

I started working out when I was thirteen and it was around this time period, the boy from school made his rude comment.  Try as I might, I couldn't shrink my legs!

After middle school and even into my twenties, I had heard that comment again, a few more times.  Once, a guy at work told me I had big legs.

I remember practically liquefying in my mind, resolving to do something about it.  It wasn't until much later that I realized that it was genetics and that all I could do was accept that I had muscular calves and that maybe that wasn't such a bad thing.

In fact, later on, I started getting a lot of compliments on my legs.  Apparently, real men like nice, muscular legs that are shapely!

Having a Stomach Complex After Having Babies

Because I was tiny, at 5'2 and no more than a hundred pounds throughout my growing years and beyond, my stomach was flat and toned.  I actually liked my stomach and it wasn't until I had kids that my view on my stomach would change.

After my first daughter, Angeleah was born, I was still okay with my stomach.  My shape seemed to bounce back pretty quickly.

When my daughter Veronica was born, I gained a lot more weight and it took a few months to lose the weight, rather than a quick bounce back.  After all, she was my second child.

That was when I noticed a difference in the tone of my stomach.  There was a little extra stretch to the skin, almost like a little pocket of fat there.

Nothing major but definitely noticeable to me.  I also had stretchmarks this time but compared to other women, it really wasn't that bad.

Then came my little Chloe, the baby of the family.  She was by far my healthiest pregnancy.  I was determined not to gain any extra weight this time and I didn't.  I walked every single day of my pregnancy with her.  By walk, I mean I never missed a day!

We lived in Tallahassee at the time, which is in North Florida, near the Georgia border.  This area happens to be a lot more hilly and tends to get a little more weather than the rest of the state.

I remember one Christmas, we actually had snow flurries!  They just didn't stick to the ground.

Anyway, after Chloe was born, I weighed a 110 pounds and I started walking with her and rollerblading on the trail with her stroller.  I lost the last bit of weight within a couple weeks and looked amazing for just having a baby!

My stomach, though again, not that bad, bothered me.  The skin pocket or whatever you want to call it was stretchy.

To this day I still have it.  The only time I ever came close to getting rid of it was when I was in my late twenties, a few years after having Chloe.

I was working out a lot, doing a lot of core and strength training.  I actually had flat abs and a 6-pack, which was a great achievement!

Today, I still hate my stomach.  If it weren't for that pocket of stretchy skin and fat, I'd have an almost perfect body.

The good thing about it is that it reminds me of something more important than a perfect body.  It reminds me that I've had three beautiful daughters.  It reminds me of what a trooper I am and how going through labor, two times completely natural, how amazing the childbirth experience is!

Feeling Comfortable In My Own Skin

I'm still a work in progress when it comes to feeling comfortable in my own skin and that's okay.  I'm not going to lie to you or sugar coat it.

There are times when I've allowed myself to slack off on my health-conscious lifestyle. Those are the times when I "feel" fat and unhealthy.  I'm sure we have almost all experienced that feeling a time or two in life.

When I'm not working out or I'm binge eating on a bunch of crap that's not healthy for me, it takes me back to that place where I feel like I have no control over my body.  To be honest with you, that's kind of where I've been lately.

I have made some huge changes for the better in doing things to feel better about myself in the last couple years.  For one thing, I stopped weighing myself obsessively.  It was an addiction that was hard to give up.

I also stopped taking laxatives.  I got hooked on laxatives at one point, to where I was taking them almost every single day because I wanted to feel empty and lighter.  I liked the feeling that I got from it afterward and I think that's what I was addicted to.

I also allowed myself to gain a little weight past what my happy weight is.  My happy weight is 96 pounds and that's the perfect, ideal weight for me.  Over the last few years, I've allowed myself to get up to a 102 pounds without freaking out.

In reality, I do plan to get back to my happy weight.  I just plan on doing it in a healthy way.  You can read my weight loss story here.  After that, if doing strength training puts me right back up to a 102 then I will know that it's because of muscle weight, instead of muscle loss.

Maybe I'll find a new happy weight by getting in the best shape of my entire life!  You never know.  In the meantime, I'm just going to keep working on myself.

Another bad habit I've broken is counting calories.  I was constantly worried that I was taking in too many calories and I was obsessed with it.  I even had an app on my phone but when I realized it was impacting my life in a negative way, I took it off for good.

I'm growing my body confidence every single day, inch by inch.  I know I'll never be perfect in my own eyes but I can at least try to be health conscious and happy!

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