I recently wrote on life after baby, but I decided that maybe I should share more about my struggle. I want to be more realistic about who I am and what I see. My body is completely different. I look in the mirror every morning, and I don't know the body that I see. I haven't known my body for the last 10 months. Carrying my daughter was one of the greatest honors I have ever had in my life. But as I watched my body change and continue to develop the beautiful baby inside me, I realized that my body would never be the same. There was no going back. I'm not sad about this, but I do struggle with what I look like now. I struggle with an image that I have set for myself. It's a challenge that I have faced since I can remember. [caption id="attachment_38576" align="alignright" width="191"] My High School Graduation[/caption] I have to share a little of my story for you to understand me. When I was in about 2nd grade, I was told by a family friend that I was fat, and that I should never wear a bikini. If you saw pictures of me, you would NOT think I was fat. I was a 2nd grade girl. By the time I was in 6th grade a young man came up to me and told me I was the fattest girl he had ever seen. Again, if you saw pictures of me you might think I was awkward, but not fat. Yes, I had my years of awkwardness, but I was always in the healthy range of weight. I went home and cried for days. Why these people felt that I was fat, I didn't know. By the time I was in 7th grade, I realized that I could go without food, and I would feel better about myself. I would look in the mirror and "think" I was skinnier. I can remember grabbing my stomach (skin) and wondering how I could get rid of it... **Now I want to make a disclaimer, my parents and family members were wonderful. My mom made dinner every night and we sat around the table. They honestly didn't know that I struggled as much as I did with the "idea" of my weight and what I thought I looked like. As I grew older and received more education, I realized what I was doing to my body. I realized that going without food, or even the idea of wanting to go without food was known as anorexia. [caption id="attachment_38578" align="alignright" width="271"] It's so worth it![/caption] It wasn't until I was around the age of 21 or 22 that I began to change. I allowed myself to enjoy food. Did I put on weight, no. I maintained working out, eating healthy and splurging some, but it took me years to get the predisposed idea of "I am fat," out of my mind. You can ask my husband. I still struggle from time to time. I come to him with questions of "am I beautiful or am I fat?" Although I look in the mirror and wonder who I am and where the former body has gone. I have now promised myself that I won't struggle with the image of what I should look like and probably can't attain. Although I don't know my body. I had the greatest honor any woman can have. I got to carry my daughter. She knows the sound of my heart. She knows my voice. She knows ME. Although I look in the mirror and it takes everything within me to not revert back to my former self of idea that "I am fat," I have promised myself that I would not do that. Although I haven promised myself to not revert back to my former self, I am going to work my butt off to get in shape and to be the healthiest person that I can be. Health doesn't just include what our body looks like, but includes mental health as well!