Confessions of a Bikini Competitor
Posted on January 09 2016
I’ve been sitting here for like twenty minutes trying to conjure up a way to start this post, but I got nothin’. This is probably going to be the hardest and most rambly sdfsdjfsfgd post I’ve written. So maybe grab yourself a cup of tea and some snacks, the whole fridge, a blanket and some hot cocoa, whatever. First and foremost I need to express my gratitude for you reading all of my sometimes nonsensical thoughts and feelings, because I know when I write, I tremendously help myself and my mindset and I certainly hope to help someone else out there who may be going through some of the same/similar things I have. Last week I expressed some feelings of mine that desperately needed to be set free, and I’m here today to set free the last of my confessions, per say. Anyone else think of Usher when they think of confessions? Just me? Oh. Anyways…maybe you’re more along the lines of Jerry Springer or Judge Judy. Whatever.
"Not really sure where to begin with this post. Drum roll please! Just kidding. Honestly, looking back at some of the pictures I’ve posted and I’ve got saved on my phone makes me cringe, literally. How irresponsible of me. I was the definition of mental anxiety and hidden struggles manifested in the shape of a human body. I was a walking contradiction. I shelled out advice like I was heathy, I was not. Maybe it filled a void for me? Maybe it made me feel like I was truly doing ok. But I wasn’t. Instead of sharing how much I was struggling, I kept it inside for the most part and continued down a path of self destruction and self hatred because the life that I was attempting to lead was not my own, it was a facade of what I thought others wanted for me. Ultimately, I was self destructing from the inside out. I despised my job, I carried no passion with what I did and was serving absolutely no one worthy of my time and energy. I had a couple bad experiences with men and was seeking approval and validation from the wrong places. I was taking out my frustrations in an unhealthy manner and keeping them bottled up instead of releasing them, cleansing my life and making the changes I truly needed to make. Here I stand, almost a year later about 10-15 pounds heavier, and with a heart full of optimism and gratitude, and a belly that’s full and a brain that doesn’t do the dumb as much as it used to lol. A new job, a new mindset and a body that serves me so graciously. I no longer pretend I’m a special unicorn and that my life is perfect while rendering others advice, I share my struggles in hopes of helping someone help themselves and realize their worth. I’m only human. But I am not my mistakes, I’ve made them, but they do not define me. I owe so many thank you’s to so many people who’ve not only inspired me, but have helped me save my own life. You do not have to live a life trapped, you are a human being and you are allowed to feel, you are allowed to have shit days, great days, struggles and triumphs. I was wrecking my body in hopes for peace of mind that I never got. At my leanest I was my most miserable and literally a walking contradiction. Don’t dig your hole any deeper. You are the only one who can change your life. Do it now, it’s too precious not to. And I can whole heartedly promise you that you are worth it, life is worth it. Getting here wasn’t easy, it wasn’t comfortable, but you have to get the hell out of your own head and just bite the effing bullet. Seriously, tough love but you’re not going to get your shit together by waiting for someone else’s permission to do so. You KNOW what you have to do, and yes, so did I and I waited far too long to act. I am a stronger person today though – mentally and physically. God has provided me with so much. I’m proud of the woman I’ve become because I’ve fought to become her.”
So, there’s more to that if you can believe it or not, ha. I haven’t expressed everything that I allowed myself to delve into, but I want to, I’m ready to. We all go through times in our lives where we literally feel like we’re at rock bottom – this was mine. I know I’m super lucky to have a roof over my head, money and necessities, but my life is far from perfect and although I know I should put these things into perspective more often, the fact of the matter is that I struggled to do so and attempted to destroy myself in the process instead of getting help or making the changes I needed to so badly, but was too fearful to do so. I was so trapped inside of my life that I literally could not cognitively function and make wise decisions. I can’t really accurately describe how anxiety feels other than being under waves that are constantly crashing over you as you struggle to catch your breath. Each moment is precious that you’re able to breath and collect yourself, but as you do so, you know the next wave is coming. I prayed so hard that God would lift those waves, stop the current and give me the strength to swim to the shore. Typing this out from the shore, I can finally say that I am set free from my fear.
Underneath those waves was a world of self-abuse and manifestation of negativity, although I always tried to express positivity and optimism on the outside; that was probably one of the worst things about it all – here I was preaching to others about things that I, MYSELF, should have been doing. Why didn’t I do so? Maybe I was embarrassed or fearful of judgement. I should not have been. When I would walk into work every morning, I had to keep myself from tears, I distracted myself, tried to focus, and just went through the motions. Kind of like a robot. On my lunch break, instead of nourishing myself, I’d run (my coworkers probably thought I was a fucking nutcase, sorry yall I’m actually not if you can believe that), I’d run and run until I experienced a sort of trance, a “high” if you will, that would bring me through the rest of the day. My heart would race, my mind could only focus on very few things at a time and I just felt like some kind of alien. That’s the only way I can describe the feeling. I lost about 15-20 or so pounds during this time period and I’m still working on gaining some of it back. I literally could have died, but looking back, a lot of it is just a blur and I do faintly remember a few times sitting in a coworkers office talking, sobbing and just feeling like I had no where to turn. I remember he’d tell me “you look thinner than ever, are you doing okay?” Of course, I’d reassure him that I was, but I wasn’t and this was the perfect opportunity to seek help, but I didn’t. And he’d always follow up with “you HAVE to get out of here, Meg.” I really, really did. But I felt like I’d be a failure if I did so. I went through the motions each and everyday in the office and was constantly feeling ridiculed, looked down upon and just went through some pretty indescribable, yet self-destructive feelings. I was treated like garbage without going into further detail. But I felt like it was somehow my fault, I wasn’t good enough, so I let myself be walked all over – something I no longer do. I am a stronger woman because of these experiences and can now proudly stand up for myself in most situations, but I hate that I had to take so many hits before seeking action on my own part. I’d rest my head on my pillow at night and didn’t really sleep. Occasionally I would doze off for a few minutes out of sheer exhaustion, only to be woken up battered with thoughts and anxiety of going into work the next day. I was a little bit vocal to my Dad about my anxiety and he did offer me support, but I didn’t go into the depths of how horrific I was feeling, so I usually crawled back in bed and rested my head until my alarm went off at 5am. I looked forward to the wee hours of the morning that I spent with my friends in the gym – I honestly loved it, because I could be myself, I could have my “Megan time” before hiding in my shell at work. If that makes any sense; I owe a lot to the people that met me at the gym that early (most of them still go that early, too! I cannot anymore). My digestive system was so messed up from stress and anxiety that I’d literally marinate the gym with gas lol. I didn’t realize until now how anxiety can cause your gut to just go haywire. I still deeply apologize to those who had to smell me during those mornings. As comical as it is to me now, at the time I felt like I needed to be caged. I would drive to work soon after showering and grabbing a shake and contemplated many, many times crashing my car or “accidentally” driving off of the road. No, I didn’t want to die, I just want an excuse to stay home from work. Horrible, right? I never acted upon these thoughts because of the consequences and putting other people in danger. How selfish of me to have these thoughts to begin with. Eventually my days just became a blur.
In January, I faintly remember being brought into the HR office and swiftly being told, without warning, that I’d been laid off. To be honest, I didn’t know whether to a)cry b)jump for joy and buy myself a fking pinata or c)shit my pants. So I did all three!! Just kidding. I called my dad in tears and in quite a bit of shock. Yep, 25 years old and still a Daddy’s girl. Maybe that makes me weak in the eyes of some, but I don’t really care. I reached out to someone and I needed reassurance, love, support. I had fallen and needed a hand to help pick me back up in that moment of weakness. I’d worked so hard to please people in this job, so why me? I wasn’t good enough, just like I thought. My dad was my complete rock through this entire process and I cannot thank him enough to this day. I literally would not be where I am right now if God didn’t put him in my life. I mean that with all of my heart, words cannot even begin to describe how much I owe him. So here I was, unemployed, lost and struggling to find myself again.
I still held a part time positon with Whole Foods and although my typical store didn’t have enough hours for me to be full-time, or even part-time during that time frame, I got an email from Erin. One of the managers at Whole Foods in Baltimore. This call changed my life. I started working for Erin 4 days a week and she so graciously provided me with the hours, support and just some damn positivity that had been missing from my life for too long. I discovered that I could be vocal again, I could express myself without fear. I smiled. Genuinely. Although financially I was pretty much in the pits, I felt something that I hadn’t felt in so long – happiness. My confidence, my life, my strengths all resurfaced and it was only then had I realized that holy sh!t, as unsure as I am about my life right now, I’ve never been more sure that losing my job was the biggest blessing that could have ever happened to me. I worked on freelance work and had more time to do stuff for Slap Nutrition. (YO shameless plug if you need any graphic design work – hit me up http://www.meganmorat.com/) I soon got offered a position right down the street at Lululemon where I currently work and thrive full time. The people there value each other, we laugh, we talk. Something I am so grateful to be able to experience. It’s real! I still also work at Whole Foods part time because I cannot simply let go of that blessing and I truly enjoy my time and surroundings there. I hit the gym when time allows between my jobs and freelance work with a goal of competing in mind. I’ve discovered a sincere passion for it and it’s an awesome goal that keeps me motivated. Lifting for me has proven that I am not only strong outside, but inside as well. More and more I’ve been able to discover that money does not equal happiness. I’ve also discovered that I am worthy of love, laughter and LIFE. I have a boyfriend! I have substantial relationships! I can laugh again! My farts don’t threaten lives (unless you give me Splenda). I don’t need anyone else’s permission to be a human being. Looking back now, do I wish things had gone differently? No. God’s plans>my plans. I still have work to do, but that’s the beauty of life. It’s a constant journey – ups, downs, rights and lefts. One thing I do know now is that I want to share this journey, be an open mind, have an open heart. You are never alone, don’t be trapped in your own life, your own job, your own bubble of what you think is a life, but really is just an existence. Society has led us to believe that you should never be sad, never be angry. You know what? Fuck that. You need to feel, experience, strengthen and flourish from those times of darkness, because that’s how you appreciate the light. I have so much light in my life and cannot put into words how blessed I am, now and then. Make mistakes, learn from them, you aren’t perfect, get over it. Own your confidence, you do not need anyone else’s permission to do so.
If you have thoughts, please express! I feel like I have so much left to say but it’s just coming out in run on sentences and blubber. So I’m done for now Thank you so much for reading.
Megan's top 3 leg exercises: http://www.meganmorat.com/?p=5834