I see courage

I wanted to write a story about each of our Featured Guests for this Thursday’s GNO and realized that I don’t have a picture with Theresa.  She had to scoot out of our little brunch get-together before I was able to grab a pic with her.   I was so bummed and  searched her Facebook for a fun picture to tell her story.  I was instantly drawn to this beautiful image.

Then I read the story . . . and the tears fell.

Now I know why we didn’t get a picture together.  You needed to hear this story in her words, not mine.  I want you to meet Theresa, to get to know her story and her heart.  I can tell you all the things I know and love about her, like her obvious wisdom, kindness, courage, resiliency, generosity, and her fierce belief in supporting other women.  But I can’t even get near the tip of the iceberg on this kind of good stuff.  It comes from so much deeper.

Some stories are like works of art.

They shouldn’t be touched or edited by anyone except the artist.  They should simply be passed along exactly as they are.  This is one of those.  So with her permission, here’s a little bit of Theresa’s story in her words.

Soak it in. . .

“Growing up, people would tease me and call me fat.

I’m so fat.

I was a 6th grader and 80 pounds.

When I turned 14, I joined a gym and I worked out for two hours straight almost every day.

But they still called me fat. I cared too much what people thought of me. I sought approval, to feel and “look normal”. But all it did was made me feel small.

I tried eating steamed rice, broccoli and soy sauce for all of my meals.

They called me thunder thighs. I wanted to look like the other skinny Asian girls. I didn’t want to love my uniqueness and my own beauty.

I found the results I was looking for by becoming a bulimic.

They called me skinny. They called me pretty. They said my face looks slimmer. You could see my cheekbones now.

It was my little secret.

I was so ashamed. I knew I was hurting myself and my body, but I just wanted to be skinny so that I could be pretty. It was worth it. And now I was “normal” and now I was deserving.

I didn’t understand what self-love was or what it meant. I thought to love yourself meant you were conceited.

Don’t shine too bright or people will start judging you.

When I started nursing school, I realized physically what I was doing to my body and sought help. I couldn’t begin to even care and help others heal if I couldn’t do the same for myself!

Today, I am totally recovered. I think back to that time and wish that little girl had the confidence she needed to repel those words and enough respect for herself that she could love the vessel by which her soul was housed. I wish she knew how to expand that light inside her heart instead of hiding it in the dark.

How often did I shrink because I cared too much about what others thought of me? Too many.

How often do you dim your shine because you don’t want others to judge you?

I look at this picture and I see me. I see my past that created my present beauty. I see my truth. I see courage. I see love. I see my soul. I am so comfortable in my own skin and ready to put my high beams on.

Are you still playing in the shadows?

Know that this is your time to shine. The world needs you to play big. Be big, be bold and be YOU. It’s way more fun.

You are unique my friend, and that’s the TRUTH.

~ Theresa Nguyen

Nurse, Mindset Mentor & Business Coach at More Time More You

{📸 Katherine Gail Co.}

 Come meet Theresa this Thursday at “Let’s Get Together” GNO, where she’ll be sharing more of her behind the scenes story about beauty and more real-life encouragement for you to be comfortable shining in your own skin.  Get registered today.

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