I have thought about this a lot, what would I say to "me", if I could go back in time. So here it goes...
Dear Little Chubby Lori,
I want you to know that no matter how hard things get in your life, don't ever doubt your worth. The world can be a very cruel place at times, especially for an overweight child. People are going to say some pretty mean things that will hurt you, more than you ever thought possible. When you walk in to kindergarten class for the first time and kiss your mommy good-bye, this will unfortunately start the end of your innocence. You will start to see that no matter how hard you try, people will still be mean. You will walk in that class with your pretty little head held high, but as the days go by, your sweet little face will start to droop. When things get hard, just remember that you have the most amazing parents that love you more than life itself. And when you ask them why people make fun of you, they will hug you and tell you, "because they are jealous". They will always try and keep things positive. They will tell you how pretty you are and how sweet and smart, you are. They are the two people in the whole world, that love you and think you are perfect, NO MATTER WHAT. You will be a mama's girl and a daddy's girl. You will ALWAYS feel safe at home. It will be a place for you to really be "you". You will feel free here. You will act silly and have the time of your life. This is your safe place. Your mom will go on all kinds of diets with you, even though she doesn't need to lose weight. She will cheer you on and offer you some fun rewards, if you hit your goals. Your daddy will even put on some sweats and do Jane Fonda workouts with you. At home, you won't feel like some disgusting pig. You know the pig that people in the real world, make you feel like you are. Your sisters and you might fight and call each other names, but know this....they love you more than anything in this world. They will NEVER let anyone hurt you. You may not realize it, but they love you no matter what your size is. They love you because you are funny and sweet and goofy. They will be your true best friends. The kind of friends that will NEVER EVER hurt you. Sometimes you won't even know this, but they are your biggest cheerleaders. Just because they are naturally thin and beautiful, doesn't mean they can't relate to your struggles. No one is perfect, they too have things they struggle with. When you all grow up and become mommy's you will learn to appreciate each other even more. You will have fun girl's weekends together and see just what real friendship is.
When you are in school and the kids make fun of you, just remember, they too have things they struggle with. If they didn't, they wouldn't bother trying to put all the negative attention on you. And when you meet that boy that you think likes you....he does, he just can't let his buddies see it. I know this will break your heart, but you WILL get over it. You will stand at the kitchen sink with the best guy in the whole world, your daddy. He will tell you, "honey, guys are assholes". This will stick with you. If the most perfect and loving man says this, it must be true. He will hug you and tell you that it will all be OK. And guess what, it will. It just takes you years to figure this out. And when you get married to that horrible man that hurts you physically and mentally, your daddy will about lose it. He will have to be asked to not go to divorce court with you, in fear of what he might do. He will tell you and your sisters, "No one hurts my girls". This too, will stick with you. And when you go to court that day, your mom will be by your side and you will hold your head up high. THIS...is a good day, it's the first day of the rest of your life. From that point on, you will start to change. And we are talking BIG changes. You will start to get your weight in control and start living your life. You will reconnect with some amazing friends and start having the time of your life. You will still get made fun of, at times. BUT....you are learning to handle it better. You are seeing that it's not you that has a problem, it's them. They are even more miserable that you thought you were.
The one thing you will take away from ALL that you have been through, is this. DON'T EVER JUDGE A BOOK BY IT'S COVER....EVER. You will see a super skinny girl and learn that her life is NOT perfect. She just might be one of the most unhappy people you will ever meet. She could have an eating disorder and an awful home life where she is made to feel ugly. You will also meet "big" girls that are 100% happy and healthy. You will see that just because someone has some extra weight on them, does not mean they aren't happy. Too many people think that overweight people are miserable. THEY ARE NOT! When someone approaches you and is automatically judging you, remember, they are just judging your "book" by its "cover". Just smile and kill them with kindness. They will realize, you really are a great person.
You will get to a place where you are 100% content. You will be a mommy, a wife a friend, sister, aunt and daughter. And you will be good at it. It might takes some years to perfect, but you will be GREAT! And one thing you never saw coming, you will share your story with others and you will meet some AMAZING women. Women that you will connect with on such a wonderful level. Women that will inspire you! And...you will inspire them. You will touch their lives. You will show them that no matter how hard life gets, you can get through it.
In closing, I just want you to know that every single thing that happens to you in life, happens for a reason. There is a plan for you so don't EVER regret a thing. Life is short, so please live, love and laugh...especially laugh at yourself. And remember, it's OK to fail, just get back up on that horse as many times as you need to. One day, you will stop falling....