Hello everybody! I'm possibly too enthusiastic for my almost yearly journal update but lets roll with it.
So 2015, what a year, really I think I learnt more about myself and others in that space of time than I have in my lifetime. I'm writing this now with a much more positive state of mind, I may have seemed alright in the last journal post but in matter of fact I was mentally in a very bad place. What had began as a lifestyle change in order to have healthier habits and to exercise more turned into an eating disorder. Well ain't that fab (sarcasm intended).
But what I have realised is that self care is just as important as the care you give out, body image and weight isn't something that should define your worth and definitely should not be a place for critique by someone you have a relationship with. Don't get me wrong, it's a good thing to support healthy lifestyles and to do so together however when this becomes a way of controlling the other then that isn't a positive. Though out of all this I've realised how thankful I am for the people who love me and treated me seriously and those I have met recently who have been continuously supportive.
Basically I am here now at what I could consider to be far over the other side from where I was six months ago, when I decided that I didn't want to be defined by numbers whether it be the calories in food, the weight on the scale, my measurements etc. I have also been having counselling and I'm mentally in a much better place now than I've been in a long time. I can see it in the way I draw and the way I am with others. I look healthier and I'm content when people tell me I do as it shows I'm recovering well. When I hear healthy I don't feel the urge I had to fast or cut calories or to exercise like crazy but instead I am relieved. My love of exercise has come back too, I don't see it as something I need to do in order to lose weight but instead really enjoy the muscle gain that it has caused. Knowing that pilates and walking has been so beneficial for the muscles in my legs and arms and stomach etc. and that my body is actually able to build it is fantastic.
Also I don't believe that if I had the same mindset as I did I would have been able to finish my portfolio. I'm producing artwork now which I never felt I'd be so happy in creating, the passion I had for art before all this has returned with a bigger drive and ambition than previously. I don't feel like I'm being held back any more, I'm complimented and critiqued fairly on my work and I'm appreciated for what I do and for where I am. 2016 is probably my biggest year in the sense of progressing forwards in education, and this mental stability is something I greatly needed in order to do so.
Life is good, I'm living out my dreams surrounded by people I love and who love me. I have found a happy balance in life where I eat because I want to and have the right amount, yet also exercise a lot because I enjoy it and not because it's expected. I've also learnt a large amount about what caring really is, who you should and shouldn't trust and how you should love yourself. After rain comes a rainbow right? (packing out them cheesy quotes) There's been a lot of rain. Though through this amount of time I've spent hating myself and my body has progressed to a version of me that is more confident and content that I've ever been.
I like the artwork I produce and I'm proud of the portfolio I have created. That doesn't mean I don't have a long way to go as I know I do which is why I'm preparing for my future of going to university, but I've found that there's nothing wrong with being happy with the progress you've made so far. I've made a great amount of progress since when I started to now; not just in how I draw but also mentally and physically. So I'm glad I've experienced hardships as it's made me have a better acknowledgement of things.
All I have to say is surround yourself with people who love you for you, do what you feel passionate about, and stay healthy but don't be obsessed with appearance considering your body is what carries you about. Treat yourself well, treat your hands with care as they will get you to good places with what you draw, look after your brain as your mental health is so important, and take care of the body you have but keep in mind it's a vessel. Self care isn't eating 500 calories a day to be skinnier nor is it purposeful fasting, it's loving what you can do now and anticipating the future.
I'm dramatic af but okay, it's fine though as this is yearly so it's enough cheesiness to last the entire time.
Let's just say I'm excited for what the future holds.. ;D