My name is Sarah Clanton (@bpdbodyandme), and I am 32 years old. I currently live in Nashville, Tennessee, I am a full-time middle school teacher. After years of struggling with my mental health and relationship with food, I decided to start making small changes to my diet and exercise. By staying in a calorie deficit and working out with Team Body Project videos, I lost 75 pounds.
Ever since puberty, I struggled with my weight. I filled out thicker than all of my friends. I began using food for comfort at a young age. Added to that was the issue of food scarcity in my home for many years. The combination of these two factors and the way I was raised deeply damaged my relationship with food and led me to develop binge eating disorder in later years.
During the pregnancy of my second child, I was diagnosed with gestational diabetes. After his birth, my doctor informed me that I would likely develop type 2 diabetes if I did not make changes to my diet and activity levels. At the same time, the constant hormone fluctuations from my two pregnancies and deliveries in two years had triggered the symptoms of my borderline personality disorder to be more unmanageable than ever before.
I wasn’t ready to commit to making any changes until I was 30 around March 2020. That’s when I decided enough was enough. I remember my granddaddy coming to visit for Christmas a few months before, and my mom taking lots and lots of photos. I remember wanting to hide behind the couch for the pictures. And I remember seeing the photos at a later date and crying my eyes out. I didn’t recognize myself. I saw my dead, empty, forced smile and how my posture tried to shrink my body into its smallest form and failed.
It took me over another year after that to crawl out from the depression and start making the necessary changes to take care of myself once again. My body was in constant pain. Even the simplest physical activities seemed impossible for me, and I was eating fast food multiple times a day as a punishment to myself for not being willing to do the work yet. Even though I had known and understood I was only hurting myself by prolonging the process.