Wednesday, February 1, 2012

operation beautiful

I have to warn you--this has been a very hard post for me to write and I apologize in advance if it catches you off guard. However, I feel this part of me needs to be shared because it is yet another reason I want to make a difference in this world.

As a child, I can't remember worrying about my weight. As a middle schooler, I felt I was on the thicker side. By the time I got to high school, I was completely self conscious of my body and eventually developed an eating disorder. It was something I wasn't completely aware I was doing at first, and something I struggled with into my college years. Looking back, I'm not really sure how or when it started...but I knew why it started.

To start, I wasn't happy with the way I looked compared to most of my friends. I felt insecure next to them with their flat stomachs and thin legs. On top of that, my heart had been broken by a string of boys making me feel I wasn't good enough for them. I couldn't control what my friends looked like, or how the boys treated me, but I realized I could control how I looked by eating less and less. 

I got to the point where I would go entire days only drinking caffeine and not eating a full meal until dinner. I thought if I starved myself, and lost more weight, I'd feel better about the size I was. As I went off to college I became completely dependent on my way to lose weight. When everything in my life was changing, it was the only thing I felt I had control over. And the only thing I thought would make me feel better.  

Now, almost twenty-five years old, I can't believe the way I treated myself or how long I hid it for. The very few people who knew and tried to help, I couldn't hear. I've been better for a long time now, and happy to say I love my body and the shape I am in today. And I'm in this condition because I've been working my ass off at the gym, and eating right. But it makes my heart hurt to think of the girl I was during that time. And it hurts even worse to know that the statistics show anorexia is becoming common in girls starting as early as age 8 now. 

In my attempt to save the world, I want to do something to help young girls who feel the way I did. That's when I found Operation Beautiful. This blog was started by a woman named Caitlin who wants to end negative body image thinking (as she calls it, "Fat Talk") in girls, women and men. She began by leaving sticky note messages in bathrooms, grocery stores, gyms, etc. such as "You are beautiful!" in hopes to brighten a stranger's day. Her small act caught on, and her blog is now filled with stories of people finding the notes and how it changed them. 

So... I made some sticky notes :) And I have them in my purse and will be leaving them everywhere I can so that whoever finds them knows they are pretty. That they are beautiful just the way they are. I challenge you to leave some sticky notes too. You have no idea the way one comment or note can change someones may be just what they need at that time.

Be the change. Make the difference.  


  1. I love this Jessie . . . And loved that you shared your story.

    Sticky notes, I am "in.". Question, did you put her blog address on the note or email . Would love to have coffee with you, Barbie too, when she returns to visit more.

    BTW . . . You are beautiful and have such a Grace about you!

  2. Hi Lynne! Thanks for your kind words :) You are too sweet!

    I put the website address on the sticky notes. I would love it if you emailed me some of yours so I can post them on here too! Coffee date soon for sure--we will work something out!