An Open Letter To My Negativity

An Open Letter To My Negativity

You have gotten the best of me.
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"You're fat."

I take one look in the mirror and I grab my hips. Where did all of this come from? Is this the freshman fifteen? More like the freshman fifty. I read a magazine. It tells me how I can lose weight, and fast. I want to do that. I need to go to the gym. I need to look like her. Why can't I look like her? Why can't I wear that? Why don't I look like I did when I was 16? She's so beautiful. She must have so many people that love her. She's so lucky. Why can't I be lucky? I pull at my thighs. These things don't fit into anything. I want a thigh gap. I'll do whatever it takes to get that. Whatever it takes.

"You're ugly."

I look in the mirror again. I need makeup on my face. I can't go out looking like this. What if people see me? What if people see what I naturally look like? I wasn't made pretty enough. I look at my friends. They're all so beautiful. They're all so confident. Why can't I be as pretty as her? Why can't I look like that?

"You aren't good enough."

I got a bad grade. I should have studied more. I should have applied myself better. Why am I so stupid? I look to the girl next to me, she got a better grade. Why can't I be as smart as her? I'm not going to make anyone proud. I'm going to fail. Everyone is going to be disappointed in me. Why can't I be smart?

Dear My Negativity,

You have gotten the best of me. I won't let this happen again. The amount of effort that I put in to everything I do will not let you win. Not again. I know what I need to do. I know how I need to improve. I will take you and mold you into an experience. This is not the end.

You have not destroyed me. This feeling is not permanent. You made me feel low, but I'm finding myself. I'm figuring these things out. I'm growing stronger. That's all you've made me do. Day by day, I'm turning into the person that I'm meant to be. I'm learning to love myself.

All of these bad days are going to be worth it. All of the bad will make the good taste so much sweeter. All of the bad thoughts are going to fade and I'm going to be able to say I made it far away from that bad place. One day it'll be worth it. One day.

I will learn how to look in the mirror and love the reflection I see, even when I didn't have time to go to the gym or eat a healthy meal. I will learn to love how I look without concealing it with my artwork. I will learn that each failure is a stepping stone. Failing is a learning experience.

I am beautiful.

I am smart.

I love myself.

You have not won.

Cover Image Credit: storify

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To The Parent Who Chose Addiction

Thank you for giving me a stronger bond with our family.

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When I was younger I resented you, I hated every ounce of you, and I used to question why God would give me a parent like you. Not now. Now I see the beauty and the blessings behind having an addict for a parent. If you're reading this, it isn't meant to hurt you, but rather to thank you.

Thank you for choosing your addiction over me.

Throughout my life, you have always chosen the addiction over my programs, my swim meets or even a simple movie night. You joke about it now or act as if I never questioned if you would wake up the next morning from your pill and alcohol-induced sleep, but I thank you for this. I thank you because I gained a relationship with God. The amount of time I spent praying for you strengthened our relationship in ways I could never explain.

SEE ALSO: They're Not Junkies, You're Just Uneducated

Thank you for giving me a stronger bond with our family.

The amount of hurt and disappointment our family has gone through has brought us closer together. I have a relationship with Nanny and Pop that would never be as strong as it is today if you had been in the picture from day one. That in itself is a blessing.

Thank you for showing me how to love.

From your absence, I have learned how to love unconditionally. I want you to know that even though you weren't here, I love you most of all. No matter the amount of heartbreak, tears, and pain I've felt, you will always be my greatest love.

Thank you for making me strong.

Thank you for leaving and for showing me how to be independent. From you, I have learned that I do not need anyone else to prove to me that I am worthy of being loved. From you, I have learned that life is always hard, but you shouldn't give into the things that make you feel good for a short while, but should search for the real happiness in life.

Most of all, thank you for showing me how to turn my hurt into motivation.

I have learned that the cycle of addiction is not something that will continue into my life. You have hurt me more than anyone, but through that hurt, I have pushed myself to become the best version of myself.

Thank you for choosing the addiction over me because you've made me stronger, wiser, and loving than I ever could've been before.

Cover Image Credit: http://crashingintolove.tumblr.com/post/62246881826/pieffysessanta-tumblr-com

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The Only Difference Between A Summer Body And Your Winter Body Is Your Attitude

Your love handles need love, too.

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Summer is coming and for most, this is a very exciting time. The weather is warm, school is out, and the beaches are packed. Although summer is great most of the time, it can also be super stressful for people who aren't confident in their bodies. There is a body ideal that is set on media sharing sites such as Instagram, Facebook, and VSCO that makes people feel like they need to fit that image to be considered attractive.

My first problem is, well, these images are unrealistic in the first place. Most of the time, people posting photos of them in their bikinis or swim trunks have edited the photo in some way. Whether they've edited it to appear skinnier, more muscular, or tanner, odds are they've doctored the photo in some way. Even if they haven't, who cares!

I know I've personally struggled when it comes time to buy a bathing suit. Honestly, it's the worst thing ever. Looking in the mirror and seeing what you look like after the holidays and 4 months without the sun can be shocking. It's time to embrace this! I've seen so many people posting "working on my summer body," or "getting ready for bikini season," and it's honestly just sad.

A person shouldn't have to change their everyday lifestyle to want to "look good" in their bathing suit. What's wrong with a little extra weight on the thighs or some cellulite on your butt? As long as you feel confident with your body, you should want to embrace it and show it off!

Feeling confident in today's world is harder than ever for women. The media is pushing body positivity, but it doesn't seem like it applies to everyone. If a celebrity is a little thicker, everyone applauds them and talks about how beautiful they are, "even though they're bigger," and that is exactly where the problem lies. Shifting the standard of beauty because someone is bigger totally discredits whatever compliments they receive. It's a backhanded compliment and it's not fair to include a comment about their weight while trying to compliment them. Someone's beauty should not be defined by how big or small they are and saying people are an exception to the rule probably hurts them more than you think.

I don't know about you but I won't be doing anything to prepare my body for this summer because these people are going to take what I give them! All in all, love yourself first and it'll give others the opportunity to do the same!

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