Throwback Thursday: French Toast & Self-Loathing

Every Thursday, I dig out an old diary and share an entry sans editing (in hopes we’ll all see my grammar and apostrophe use improve) with a short commentary. If you like laughing with/at Young Ashley, feel free to use the handy search bar to the right and simply type “Throwback Thursday” and you’ll find the whole archive. Thanks for reading!

Sunday January 24, 1999

Dear Genna,

I’m so fat. I weight 100 pounds. Corey, my older brother weighs 80! I wish I had his body more boys would like me. He’s really skinny. Funny thing is I could never imagine myself skinny. I think I’d look ALOT better. I want to wear a bikini this summer without having to suck in my belly. I’ll keep a record of what I had to eat almost every day and try to be healthy. Wait no. I WILL eat healthy. 

Breakfast: 2 peices of french toast & syrup. milk butter

Lunch: none

Dinner:

Snacks: lots of chocolate :[ Dang-it!

I have to cut down on my sweets, drink LOTS of water, more than 8 glasses. And workout Every Day! Must!

Bye, 

Ashley

I didn’t really want Thursday features to be me making fun of myself, but I don’t know how I can’t with this one. Where do I begin?

Diary

Oh, young Ashley. Why do you hate yourself so much? Who should we blame? Television? Movies? Magazines? Society in general? Carbs? I like carbs, let’s blame carbs.

Maybe under different circumstances, I would have become an anorexic. If my mom had been more critical. If my dad had been less caring. If my brother weighed 70lbs. On that note, I’d just like to state that I no longer want my brother’s body. He might still weigh less than me, but I’ve learned to accept that boobs weigh a few pounds, and I’d like to keep them.

Clearly, I had no idea what nutrition was. French toast? It’s just processed whiteness fried in an egg drizzled with sugar liquid. Seems legit. Chocolate? Fuck yeah, antioxidants! (I don’t think anyone was talking about antioxidants in 1999.) I had one thing right though – lunch and dinner are pretty unimportant and relatively unappetizing meals. Breakfast is where it’s at. And exercising – how the hell do 10 year olds exercise? At that time, I considered running around the block once to be sufficient exercise. As long as my breathing quickened for more than 2 minutes, I was set. Also, I think it’s sufficiently weird that I’m still addressing this to my cousin. What was I going to do? Deliver this to her on Christmas? Sorry, Genna, I guess I owe you a 15-year old Christmas gift. You probably don’t want it.

Needless to say, I didn’t lose weight. I grew breasts and developed a waist smaller than my hips. That came with a few extra pounds. Like most girls, I struggled with my body image while growing up. I was never skinny enough. My skin always had too many pimples. My hair never looked good. My mom would never buy me white eyeliner and black mascara (could you think of a worse makeup trend?). I was always a little chubby and a little awkward, even through high school. While my peers were at their prime at 17 and 18, I was still figuring out how to conceal my pimples and pretend I didn’t have a muffin top. Seven years later, I still haven’t quite figured those things out, but I’ve got better makeup and accepted I don’t look good in jeans whose waistline hovers just below my hipbones. Structure: some of my clothes has it.

I didn’t grow into myself until my freshman year of college when I discovered I could wear cardigans and adorable flats while looking down at the skinny girls in their $30 Abercrombie shirts, because seriously, who wears those clothes after high school anyway?

I’m proud to say that my self-loathing has taken a backseat to my “BITCH, I DO WHAT I WANT” attitude. It’s not quite that violent, but we’ll just say I’ve accepted that I’m probably never going to weigh 100 pounds, I’ll probably always suck in my belly when I wear a bikini, and I will always enjoy french toast with syrup and butter.