Take Care
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Health and Wellness

Take Care

Mentally & Physically

Take Care

My body is something I've learned to love and appreciate over the past few years. I've learned to love my pale white skin, the freckles splattered across my nose, the broadness of my shoulders, and even the way my flat butt looks in jeans.

I've been lucky enough that until recently I've never really had to worry about what I eat, or that I've never consciously struggled with my weight. But I'd like to take a minute to talk about what it means to struggle with your weight, at least what it means in my life to struggle with weight.

During high school I developed an anxiety disorder, that at the time I didn't realize was anxiety, that would leave me with stomachaches that felt bad enough that I wouldn't be able to stand up and go out sometimes. I would choose to miss out on being able to go out and do things because I didn't understand how to deal with what was making me anxious at the time (turns out a bad boyfriend can do that to ya). I would cope with the anxiousness and stomachaches by not eating much, and by the end of my senior year of highschool I had, not purposefully, lost around ten pounds. That doesn't really seem like a big deal, but for someone my height and weight (I'm around 5'4 and normally weigh between 125-127 pounds depending on the day) so weighing in at 118 pounds was a big deal.

The messed up part about it is that I never thought anything of it, I never thought there was something wrong with what I was doing or how I was handling the stressors in my life. I was bothered more than anything when people would tell me how thin I was, or when they would ask if I was trying to lose weight or when my mom would tell me how baggy my pants looked on my body. It never occurred to me that not eating as an answer to my problems, wasn't even an answer to my problems, it was just a way to healthily cope until I felt better until the cycle started over again.

Eventually I found out that what I was feeling was from anxiety, and I've learned how to handle it and cope with it better than ever, but the time in between then and now has been a bit shaky.

Here's the thing: not eating is not the answer to anyone's problems. Being anxious and stressed and worried about things completely out of our control is okay and normal, but taking it too far and not giving your body the food, the fuel, the vitamins and protein, the love it needs to keep going is seriously not. Giving your body what it needs will make you feel better in ways you won't even realize until you do.

It's been about five years or so, and I've finally got that idea stuck in my head, and I've been trying harder than ever to really take care of myself in all of the ways I possibly can. I'm eating right, taking care of my skin and hair, I stopped *actively* biting my cuticles, I'm checking in and making sure I'm doing alright mentally, too, and I'm even making working out less of a weekly drag, by making it something I look forward to during my less busy school days.

Although exercise and working out are a drag and sometimes I really dread going to the gym, the feeling I get post workout is one of the best, and knowing that I'm taking care of myself, and actively being mindful of the parts of my body that I never usually think of, feels amazing.

So, today, take care of yourself. One step at a time, start doing the things that make you feel good or that you know are going to make you feel good. Do it for you.

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This article has not been reviewed by Odyssey HQ and solely reflects the ideas and opinions of the creator.
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