This isn’t something that concerns me a lot, but I was thinking about it last night. I’m about 5‘6” and 100 pounds, that’s really thin. I’ve always been in good health, I don’t get faint or anything, and I’m actually pretty tough despite my size. My hair grows really long and thick, same with my nails, so I don’t worry that my body is suffering because of my weight. But sometimes my mind does.
I’ve always been really small. I was raised by a single mother who was going back to college while I was in school. She didn’t really have the time or money to cook us three square meals a day, but the food she gave us was always the healthy and natural option. My brother and I got free school lunches, but I was a really picky eater and would only eat lunch a few times a week. Basically, I got used to not eating a lot. I was still really active and energetic as a kid, just small.
People called me skinny a lot. I’ve grown to hate that word. Sometimes people would seem concerned, but most of the time it was a compliment. Even now I hear it more. It made me uncomfortable.
I strive to be as neutral as I can be. I don’t want to be ugly and I don’t want to be pretty. I don’t want to stand out, especially for my appearance. So when people would call out my size it made me self-conscious, even if it was a compliment.
In middle school, I started wearing a hoodie over my shirt every day, whether it was hot or not. I didn’t like looking at my arms or torso and I didn’t want anyone else to. I wanted the option to hide away.
In high school, I got a little taller but stayed really lanky. I started attending an online school and barely saw anyone for a couple years. When I started working at 16, I would always wear a long sleeve shirt under my work t-shirt even though it is always really hot.
There are days when I make myself proper meals packed with calories, protein, and fat to try and be health an maybe put on weight. And there are days where I completely forget to eat. Food doesn’t really do anything for me so it’s easy to ignore. And my body is so used to not eating a lot anyway, so sometimes too much food will make me feel ill. Lately, I’ve been enjoying making food for my brother and me, knowing that he won’t cook for himself. Maybe I’m not consistent enough, but I can’t seem to put on weight. Everything seems to go right through me.
And when I get anxious or depressed, I lose more weight. I forget to eat more and my body just feels like it wants to shut down. I thought I was thin a year ago, but I’ve lost an inch off my waist since then. I had to take in most of my pants that used to fit just fine. And when I lose weight I can’t seem to gain it back at all.
At this point, I just try to take care of myself. I don’t like thinking too much; I don’t want to develop an unhealthy relationship with food. I’m in a comfort zone and I worry that if I change people will notice and ask me about it. I get anxious eating in public, a worry that started in middle school, but I don’t want people to think I have an eating disorder either. I’m out of the house a lot too and can only manage so much.
Basically, I’m stuck. But I’m going to make myself breakfast and try to forget about all this.