I've pretty much always been an insecure person...at different stages of life a little more so than others, but I definitely qualify. For some reason, or another, I felt like I was not as good as the next person. That is, less attractive, less intelligent, and, generally, less of a person.
It's unfortunate to feel that way so early in life, but even as a child, I often felt like that. I was a very shy child to start off with. No, not just shy, painfully shy. I had a hard time connecting with other children my age and I often felt lonely and sad. What I really wanted during those early years in school was friendship with other kids, but, unfortunately, that wasn't such an easy thing for me to achieve. Being that shy made things pretty difficult. Not to mention that I also was on the chubby side. I felt awkward in my own skin and that affected how I dealt with others too.
As time progressed, I moved from a chubby, shy, and awkward child to a chubby, shy, and awkward adolescent. This point in my life was probably the hardest. The kids at school could be pretty cruel. When I was teased in elementary school, I would often break down and cry, but as I got older, instead of becoming visibly upset, I would internalize everything that was said to me. I had little to no self-esteem, no self-confidence, and very little self-worth. I don't know how I got through that period in my life, b/c it was just that hard.
High school wasn't as bad as my earlier school days...but there were still some difficult moments I did manage to establish some friendships and by junior year I had turned a lot of things around, in part by setting goals for myself and following through on them. I brought my grades up, I lost weight (which is a whole different story), and, most importantly, I started feeling better about myself. Junior and senior years of high school probably were two of the better years of my life. I, honestly, felt like I was coming into my own and I was considerably more happy than in the past.
However, when I was dx'ed with Type 1 Diabetes, things took a turn for the worst. Not only did I have this miserable disease, but I started having doubts about myself and my future. My self-image also took a nose dive. I started gaining weight back, and not just what I lost before my dx. No, I gained what I lost and kept gaining additional weight from there. I didn't feel good about myself and it showed.
Sometimes when I went out with friends, I felt like people were looking at me in disgust or laughing at me . It sounds paranoid, but I think it did happen. People can tell when someone feels insecure or isn't confident in oneself and sometimes they play on that weakness. Sadly, those familiar negative emotions from my past school days came flooding back.
When I see myself in pictures or even in the mirror, I wonder if I see what other people see. Many times I'll see my image and think I look ok, but then something happens, and that opinion of myself changes. I know I can't let what other people say or think dictate how I feel about myself, but I guess it's just that I care too much what others think.
So the thing I am contemplating is plastic surgery...more specifically a nose job and possibly work on my chin (since I don't seem to have one). It's a drastic move, I know, but I think it will improve how I feel about myself and, for that reason, I think it's worth it.
Thursday, I actually met with a surgeon. Honestly, I wasn't impressed with her or her practice. She spoke to me for a total of maybe 10-15 minutes and she made everything seem so simple and casual. Yeah, maybe that's b/c this is her job and she does it everyday, but surgery is surgery... it shouldn't be made out to be so easy. Plus, she didn't take enough time to talk to me about it, what it involves, the risks, etc. I felt rushed and, in my opinion, that's not a sign of a good surgeon. When I asked her when she could do it...she said as early as next week(!)...with?! Not to mention, that she said it's going to cost me something like $10,000 dollars. I expected it to be a lot of money, but I guess this was even more than my highest guess.
Needless to say, I won't be choosing her as my surgeon, but I have some other appointments set up at the end of the month. One of which is with a doctor that my Mom heard of from someone she knows at work. She is still deadset against it and we even got into a minor argument about it tonight, but I think she knows it's my decision to make. I told her I know she doesn't agree with it, but we're not always going to agree on everything. I can't do everything she wants me to do to make her happy, I have to think of what's going to make me happy too. I don't know, does that sound selfish? I hope not, but maybe I need to be a little selfish...it is my life after all.
Admittedly, I'm a little scared of proceeding with this too, but I have to do what I think is best for me and if this is it, so be it. I know some might say... look, you don't need surgery, you need counseling. I know this. But I'm certain that I still wouldn't be happy with my appearance and I think, sometimes, that no amount of counseling would change that. I'm not sure even surgery would change how I really feel about myself, but I tend to believe that it would be something that could make a positive impact on my life. We'll see, I'm still debating this myself and nothing is set in stone...