- 14 years old
- Katy, Texas
- 18 years old
- Volunteer at Sarre University
Growing up in the US had made me a bigger girl. I was at my highest weight ever and although I wasn’t overweight and my doctors often reassured that I was the picture of health, I was absolutely miserable. My weight, I felt, defined me much more than my personality or my intelligence, and it made me crawl into myself. I was shy and only spoke to answer questions in class or to a few peers and close friends. It didn’t help that I had just gotten braces, and I decided not to smile, not really. I avoided photography in general. The funny thing was… I don’t remember being openly bullied. I am sure now that people talked about me behind my back, but I wasn’t really aware of that. I was my own bully.
Moving away to Europe really made a change. At first, I gained weight and sunk into a deep depression, but after a year or so, I decided that my view on life had to change. I don’t know what the turning point was, but I ate healthier and I lost 10 kg. Then, it meant more confidence for me, and I became more social. I smiled a lot brighter.
After graduating, I wondered what to do in my life. Since I was clueless, I decided to take a year off, and applied for a volunteer year at the Sarre University in Germany. Now I’m body positive and a feminist, and I believe in a better world. It’s odd how much can change in four years… Isn’t it?