Self Love Series Part 1: Hitting Rock Bottom
Part of the reason I love to do what I do, is to help women get back their mojo, or maybe even find it for the first time. Not for anyone else, but for THEMSELVES. Falling in love with yourself is the best thing that will ever happen to you – trust me on this, I know from experience. Leading life in fear, for other people, or with regret & insecurity is no way to live. And I found that out the hard way.
I have always considered myself to be a tough, independent woman. But really, that’s just who I WANTED to be. Not until now, that I actually live my life according to that description, do I realize just how wrong I was.
As a teenager, I was always a perfectionist. Striving to ace what I could control. And at that age, it was school. Straight A’s, in any club I could get my hands on, and always, always had a boyfriend. I lived my life for the approval of other people, and that started at a really young age. College only amplified things.
I got a scholarship to University of Central Florida (aka HUGE, crowded party school). My freshman year, I did my best, kept my 4.0, worked at the library (nerd alert), and spent time with my boyfriend. But I cried everyday and begged my parents to let me move home.
My solution to this: join a sorority. Take an insecure girl, and let her be judged for approval by hundreds of other girls.
Fast forward, my then boyfriend started cheating, my insecurities went through the roof, and my control issues were at an all time high.
I partied with my friends to seek approval from them and from the guys we went out with. I maintained my 4.0 by popping Adderall and spending the night in the library.
The other area in my life I felt I needed to control: my appearance.
Seeing the number go down on the scale felt like a game to me. I was ‘winning’ at weight loss. I would not eat all day, save my calories to go out at night, most of the time get sick, and then munch just enough to get rid of the shakes the next day. The Adderall, of course, didn’t help either.
I was torturing myself. I hated myself. My relationships suffered because, well, you can’t really invest in other people when you spend so much energy picking yourself apart. I began to distance myself from my sorority, stopped going out as much, and turned my focus on finishing school.
This is when I met and fell in love with Tyler (my husband) while I was still in school. Something about him brought back a spark in me. He made me happy! (I didn’t realize at the time though, that I needed to make ME happy). I just felt good and thought “this is it.”
We got married super young and I spent the majority of that first year or so just trying to figure out how to be a wife. Become who I thought a “wife” should be, or what I figured Tyler wanted. Even though he really just wanted me to be ME.
In the mean time, I had fallen so far off track with my health, that I couldn’t even remember the last time I had a period. I wasn’t sleeping, I was always tired, and mostly, unhappy.
We moved around a lot those first few years of marriage and went through so many things that most people won’t ever experience even in 20 years together. It made us stronger and it made me understand the value in figuring out what made me happy and what made me come alive, no matter where we lived.
So, I wanted to get myself back on track. I wanted to feel strong. I wanted to feel like a woman. I figured the first place to start was by seeing doctors to figure out these hormonal issues.
5/5 specialists said this “We’re not sure what’s wrong, maybe try to go on birth control.”
Me: “What? How is that ever going to balance me? The point here is to get pregnant one day.”
Drs: “Well, I’m sorry but you’re showing no signs of producing any hormones related to conceiving.”
That’s it. That’s all they offered. Well, that and testosterone treatments. No thanks.
I finally saw one doctor who knew his stuff, but had to take care of all of my digestive issues that I caused from my eating disorder before even diving into the hormonal issues. This was done with a fast.
I dropped even more weight, and still no period. Still no sign of ever becoming a mother.
It was time to take matters into my own hands. Time to heal myself. Time to invest in myself. Time to start loving myself. This wouldn’t become my story.
Find the second part to the series here: PART II: It Starts with Acceptance