A Commitment to Change

Evaluate a significant experience, achievement, or risk you have taken and its impact on you.

For most of my adolescent life, I had always hidden behind the somewhat comforting excuses for my weight: "You're just big boned," "You just have a slow metabolism," "Someday you'll grow into your body." But there was no denying the obvious truth: I was fat, plain and simple. Since the beginning of the third grade, I was always known as just another one of the "fat kids" in the grade, and it was a reputation that stuck. No matter what I did, no matter what I accomplished, I was just seen as a very big kid and nothing else. From the endless stream of insults to the constant snickering behind my back, I never heard the end of it. I could almost never go a day without having someone poke me in the stomach, expecting to hear the Pillsbury Doughboy's "Whoo-hoo."

I took the insults and harassment throughout the years, accepting that that was all that I would ever be--one of the fat kids. But the summer before my freshman year in high school, I took a long look at myself and how I had shaped myself throughout my life. I knew that if I wanted things to change, I would have to change myself. This was the time in my life to reinvent not only my physical being and reputation,...

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