Guide of Surviving ‘Down-Sizing’
I wish I could tell you guys that it gets over. The struggle ends, looking “thin”, “beautiful”, “hot” is the solution. All dreams come true after that and even if they don’t, the rejection doesn’t hurt as bad. Well, that is far from the truth. Things hurt as bad. I wish I could tell you that once you fit into the conventional size 26 low cut denim with crisp tone lines all over your body, that you can finally believe your worth is more than your body, I am sorry but it is not true.
My name is Nikita Kotecha and I once used to weigh 90 kilograms. I was massively obese. I was bullied, made fun of, laughed at and even rejected because of this. For the longest time, the idea of me started and ended at my body. Studying in a boarding school didn’t make life any easier. Not only was I miserable, but I was also lonely. I didn’t think anyone would understand because they didn’t carry the weight of my problems. All my friends were perfect, thin, gorgeous, not a molecule of fat out of place. After my 10th, I came to Mumbai to study. I was so scared. What if people didn’t like me, what if they thought I was too fat to be a friend? I got lucky. I made the best set of friends who loved me when I was 90 and loved me when I dropped down to 50 and love me even today, at 58.9 to be precise.
After this journey that lasted 7 years and 40 kilos, did all my struggles magically disappear? Did I finally manage to not care about my body and learn to make choices that did not affect my body in any manner? NEGATIVE. In fact, I am so obsessed with my body, I do not know how to let go. If I have to make a plan to meet a friend over dinner, I will look at the menu days before to figure out what can I eat that doesn’t affect my diet. If my day looks packed without an opening to work out, I will wake up at 4 am to get my workout in. If I am at a work event and the food isn’t part of the “allowed foods”, I will simply not eat. I will cancel plans to go to the gym. And if just if, I ate that one piece of chocolate I was craving, the next day was punishment day comprising of 3 hours of workout, fasting, and the worst of all, negative self-talk. I didn’t cut cakes on my birthday, didn’t eat them on my friends’ birthdays, while all my friends partied and drank alcohol, I drank green tea and made sure I danced extra just to burn those calories.
My Instagram changed to just pictures of me working out and sucked in belly pictures of a defined core. I participated in every fad and diet. I even wanted to create a career revolving fitness because at least I would be working out for a living. But in truth, I forgot how to live. This article isn’t to glorify weight loss journeys or to tell you that’s the perfect way to get your life back on track. It’s to tell you, in this burning pot of “Fuck why I can’t I just be happy”, you’re not alone. This series is aimed at the not so glorified struggles of achieving your dream body, the sacrifices I’ve made, the relationships I’ve ended and the consequences they have had on my body. If I was given a time machine with the choice of doing it over and doing it right, I would take it. My hope from this series is that you, the one beating yourself up for eating that one extra chip, knows you aren’t alone and can hopefully learn to eat that chip without the negative talk.