“I wish I could go back and tell scared, self conscious little 14 year old me that it’s all worth it. You’re going to be okay and turn out to be so, so strong and have so many amazing, beautiful people in your life who truely do love you. You’ll have people come and go and there will be people who you allow to treat you like shit. You’ll make mistakes and there’ll be days where you won’t want to get out of bed. You’ll look in the mirror and hate the person looking back at you. Just know this, it all works out to be okay, you just gotta learn some things along the way.”

This is what I wrote for the 2009/2019 Challenge. And it has some stuff happened since then! I’ve been diagnosed with borderline personality disorder, spent months in a psych ward for the first time and got back in touch with myself and started learning to love me again. Having mental health issues AND body image issues is harrrrd! There are still days where I don’t want to look in the mirror. I see advertisements for “plus size clothing” with beautiful women no bigger than a size 16. I don’t feel represented in mainstream media or society. So I joined body positive groups. Support groups designed for women to celebrate themselves and lift each other up. A platform for people to embrace themselves and LOVE themselves exactly how they are. There are times where my mental health is particularly bad, so I put reminders on my mirrors and force myself to look at my reflection and do two things. 1. Find one thing I like about myself physically, not matter how small. And 2. Say something nice to myself out loud. The things that my inner voice says about myself, I’d never say to my worst enemy. So I think it’s important I train myself to be nice to me. Surround myself with positive people, both in reality and online.

Mental health, self love and body positivity is a tough journey, but as Mumma Ru always says “If you can’t love yourself, how the hell you gonna love somebody else?” ❤️

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