...to everyone who ridiculed me, made fun of me, called me fat, ugly, strange, different and a pig. you showed me how much words can scar you.
thank you...to the "friend" who asked me how much i weighed and was horrified when she found out we weighed the same, immediately saying she MUST go on a diet. you showed me the type of friend i never, ever wanted to be.
thank you...to the individuals who participated in the laughter against me, and still believe they are innocent. you weren't. your laughter hurt just as much as their words.
thank you...to the girl who made fun of my "big lips" all the time...funny thing, women pay money to have amazing lips like mine now. and mine were free :)
thank you...to those who hurt my feelings so much. you showed me how to have thicker skin.
thank you...to all the boys who would ridicule me publicly but hit on me privately.
thank you...to all the parents of my friends who didn't want me around their kids because i was adopted. that were always skeptical because they didn't know what i "came from". they were convinced i would be a bad influence. your ignorance still baffles me.
thank you...to the woman at church that was so. so. so. so. horribly mean to me my entire life.
thank you...to all the people that led me to once believe that being anything other than a size 6 was unattractive.
thank you...to all the girls that were horribly mean to me in school but now want to pretend we are besties on facebook.
thank you...to the boyfriend that constantly reminded me that he would never date a fat girl. i really enjoyed all the nights i was only allowed to sit and watch you eat. i also was a fan of you pointing out and poking (always in front of others) my fat thighs and stomach. you are now bald. karma?
thank you...for never sharing a single, kind word. it's made me realize the significance of sharing just one kind word.
thank you...to all the skinny girls that feel the need to complain about how bad their body image is. you have no clue. none.
thank you...to the man at work that told me, while i was pregnant, that i needed a wide load sign for my butt. as a grown man, your ignorance is inexcusable.
...because of you, each one of you, this is who i am today. i've chosen not to let your words, actions, ignorance, intolerance and name calling define me anymore. i am a beautiful, smart, loving, and kind. i'm a wife, mother, daughter, sister and friend. and most importantly, i'm a daughter of God. His love, His acceptance, His approval and His grace is all i need to lead a fulfilling life.
there is no excuse for being unkind to another person. Jesus tells us in Matthew 22:39 that the second greatest commandment is to love your neighbor as yourself. and yes, that means even the people you don't like. everything you hope for, dream for, wish for and provide for yourself - turn all of that outward and shine it onto everyone around you.
out for now