This is my STORY.

Monday, August 20, 2012

Last night I saw the replay of Cheche Lazaro's documentary on obesity in If I was only holding a score board and gained points whenever I shared the same sentiments and experiences with Iza Calzado and the other guests, I would've garnered a nearly perfect score.

I was born a big baby at 9 lbs but I wasn't at all an overweight kid until I reached fifth grade in elementary. I remember having to change my school uniforms because the ones I had the previous year didn't fit anymore. Back then, I didn't know it was the start of my lifelong battle against obesity.

It dawned on me that I was indeed overweight when I reached high school. Everyone else in my class wore fad clothes while I was wearing my older brother's denim pants and shirts. At first, it didn't bother me that I couldn't fit in the clothes worn by people my age. I was okay with being comfortable and thankful I had relatives from abroad who sent me clothes that fit. Ayway, I wasn't going out often so my school uniforms were the ones I wore most of the time. I guess I was also in denial that I was indeed overweight. I was thinking that I was okay as long as other girls in my school were bigger than me.

Then came college. I was dreading the day when I had to wear white uniform but when I got to my school, there were still others bigger than me only this time they were less. Not being the biggest in class gave me a little security.

When I reached med school, I was the biggest girl in my class. My comfort zone was the idea that I may be the biggest among the girls but there were still guys bigger than me. I don't remember trying to lose weight. My lame excuse was that I didn't have to stress myself about being overweight because I had my studies to worry about. I needed all the comfort I could get to cope up with my stressful life in medicine. Finally during my junior internship, I lost a lot of weight unintentionally. I was suddenly in a stressful and tiring situation that my body was gradually getting smaller as the months passed. I really trimmed down to the point when my mom had to resize my uniforms. When I reached senoir internship I gradually regained the pounds I lost. Needless to say that it was very frustrating for me. I was mad at myself for letting it happen. Since I wasn't getting any younger and losing weight was getting more difficult for me, I decided to use weight loss pills. The very first I tried made me feel full the entire day so I ate less but it didn't give me the results I was expecting. I gave up entirely and accepted my fate of being over sized my entire life.

When I reached residency training, I wasn't at all trying to lose weight. I guess I totally gave up on it. I was thinking, people will have to accept me for who I really am. I felt like I didn't have to please anyone so I wasn't at all too conscious with my weight. During my ER rotation, I was again subjected to a lot of stress and physical exertion that I felt my clothes loosening and got my friends noticing. Again without any effort at all I was losing weight. That time, I went out of my way to get this burden of being overweight off my back and started to join boxing and eventually signed up in a gym.

Up to this day I still struggle with my weight. I may not be as big as I was before but my ideal weight is still very far from my reach. I dream of the day when I can finally wear everything I missed wearing, like sleeveless tops and skinny jeans. Watching Cheche Lazaro's documentary and hearing Iza Calzado's  story suddenly made me feel more hopeful. Maybe someday I can be as successful as she is. If and when that happens, I will definitely look back on this day, maybe even write another blog about it. Who knows, my story might encourage others who share my struggles to do the same.

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