My Journey


“I always wanted to be the best. So, I was impatient and always restless. Comparing myself with others became my daily life.”

I reflect upon my actions, and my thoughts, and truthfully told, I certainly don’t love myself. Loving oneself isn’t an easy thing to do, and I don’t think it was intended to be easy. We witness our ideal body types on a daily basis, and the first thing we do is compare ourselves to that person. It doesn’t always have to be physical features, it could be someone else’s success, or feeling left out of a friend group. But, here’s one thing we should know: we are our own person, and we need to look after ourselves instead of hurting ourselves to be someone’s hero. It’s tough love but, trust me, I’ve been there before and it’s not easy to move on and see the brighter things around you.

March 23rd, 2020
After years of struggling with my weight and body insecurities, I’ve decided to exercise and set goals for myself. Through my mini adventure, I’ve learned a few things: you always have to be patient, and do not let other people discourage you or set you off track, not mattering who it is, even if it’s your own family member. I exercised five times a week for six months. By the end of those six months, my body felt great. I finally felt that desirable feeling that the people I looked up to talked about. I was confident in my own skin, and I felt like I loved myself, and I also felt unstoppable.

Let’s call this person Laila. Laila is someone who is very dear to me and someone who I love. She’s seen me both in my worst and my best times. We grew up together. My mother has always warned me to not be brought down. She’s taught me how to defend myself, and take care of myself, since she herself, has been betrayed by people whom she used to call family.
You could see the fire and jealousy spark in Laila’s eyes once I started to detail my success and tell her how excited I had been that now I’m finally taking care of myself and how proud I am that I finally had the motivation to even start exercising. I am not a person to brag about my successes, but imagine, finally feeling on cloud nine because you finally see yourself as a beautiful person. I simply couldn’t help myself.
Soon after, Laila started spreading rumors to my parents that I was starving myself and that I need to stop exercising. They automatically assumed that the second I stepped out of my chair to use the bathroom I was going to throw up the food. I do have many insecurities, but if had been in any severe situations like that, I would go to my mom and talk to her. She was spreading lies and it only made me want to keep pushing myself forward. But there’s always limits to one’s heart. I didn’t restrict any food I liked because I wanted to have the best of both worlds (and it is possible!). I wanted to eat what I wanted without worrying about how many calories I consumed, so I let it be. Yet overtime I’ve gotten so tired with the rumors, so tired with people looking down upon me, that I binged as a way to cope with all. Until to this day, I regret doing that.

Present time

(Valerie Fuentes)

During the time I exercised, I lost three inches on my waist, a few inches on my thighs, arms, and legs. I lost over 40 pounds and all of that while eating what I wanted and enjoying every second of it. I was actually mentally stable, and I even questioned myself, “Why did I ever hate myself?”
Laila pressured me to eat more, and she pressured me to eat an excessive amount of junk foods. Overtime I got so addicted to it that I couldn’t stop. I gained all that I have lost, and someone close to me passed away at around the same time due to Covid-19, and my expectations that I had for myself had never been reached. My mental health had been the worst at that time. I beat myself up for letting her get in control, and for not standing up for myself. I let her rumors and her lies get the best of me. I felt devastated. All those months of hard work and motivation was all gone.
I started exercising a few weeks ago after a slight surge of motivation. I’m learning how to be patient with my results, and to not give up if they’re not showing quickly. I’m not saying loving yourself must be about losing weight, but I’m saying loving yourself is about taking care of yourself, and knowing what’s the best for you. I’m starting to do things that seemed hard to me before. I’m slowly starting to see the light at the end of the tunnel. So, stay with me, while I take you through the journey of loving myself and finally accepting me for who I am.