Such a weird thing to experience especially when you’re fatphobia !
This is probably the most personal post but what the hell, if you see this it means we are family, i have let you in completely.
growing up in a big family nobody really cared about nursing your feelings most of the time. what is self esteem and anxiety? where have you ever heard of such because nobody in this family has ever been through it. i went through it all but nobody really understood what was going on with me.
in a homestead with more than 13 children you’re taught the fundamentals of survival in the outside world as a group and you are told to go out there and make it. conversations with your parents are rare there’s just too many things to be wary of. Nobody really cares until you do something drastic like disappearing from home, trying to commit suicide or getting pregnant in your teen years, you will sure get a nice beating from your father or big brother and if both are unavailable your uncle who lives a gazillion kilometers away will sure show up to put you back on track. This was usually the worse time of your life but it gets better.
I grew up as a fat child or a chubby child however you want to put it but i was quiet big. I was that child that everybody had something to say about and never cared how it would affect me. Mangcobo (mom) “why is this child so fat, what does she eat? why does she always have a snot? shes so dark its like she doesn’t belong to this family oh but wait there is this one Aunt from the family that she looks like. Those questions where usually followed by giggles while they walk away with their arrogance it was more crazy when these were coming from someone from outside the family that’s when i really felt the isolation. Although i was young it would bother me why people thought it was okay to throw stuff like that in my face and walk away like they have just given me the best of compliments. i struggled to understand why people would be so mean to me or why i was different from everybody else around me.
I was brought up with a mentality that i was ugly and fat and that it was okay for people to throw any kind of insults to me. I remember this one time my father came home from Durban and found me playing house games with my neighbour friends. He called all of us to give us sweets and the first thing he said to me was “this thing is ugly, this thing has snot, this thing is too dark, where doe she belong to? i couldn’t believe what i was hearing. I was in tears never cared for the sweets he was handing to me i hated being there his words kept on playing in my head and i would die a little inside. My friends were having a blast my own father had just made their day by making fun of me. they kept on repeating those lines the whole day and would laugh out loud in my face.
It took me years to finally love my body with all the curves and the lines under my eyes. If this was twenty years ago i would give up anything to lose weight but now i have instilled a different kind of self confidence within myself. one that is unbreakable. When i think about my childhood there’s so many things i wish i knew about myself that i know now , the things i would do to my body thinking it would help me look better makes me sob, i was so vulnerable and shameful of how i looked.
when i get random private messages on my Instagram account asking me why do i share half naked pictures of myself on social media i often don’t know how to answer besides tell them that i am comfortable with my body and that i have absolutely no problem with sharing it. i have come to far to have someone who didn’t see me grow up tell me how to cover my body. i no longer care about what the next person would say about how i am or how i am dressed because i spent my whole childhood believing what people were saying about me was true.
if you see me acting overly confident or walking sky high; listen, i deserve to because i have been through hell and back in my past life because of people. if you have never had take insults from your family members because of your body type then you know nothing about body dysphoria. when you don’t know who to run to because suddenly your safe place has become the one place were you’re most vulnerable and sad.