When I was a teenager I was the ‘fat one’. I had crushes just like any other teen girl, but not one of my crushes gave me the time of day. I doubt they would even remember my name today. Most of my friends had boyfriends. I never got any attention. I was almost 19 when I had my first kiss. Even just being friends with ‘that guy’ would have been enough. I have since learned that if they didn’t like me for me then they were not worth it. At the time though it was heartbreaking.
I started going to the gym a few years ago and have since made so many great friends there. This one guy caught my eye early on – he was tall, dark and friendly to all the people around him (and yes, handsome in my eyes – I’m happily married, but nothing wrong with eye candy, right?!).
I’m pretty shy and was feeling quite out-of-place at the gym. I wouldn’t dream of starting a conversation with this guy – he would have been the last guy I approached if at all! One day he smiled, I smiled and then he just started talking to me. I don’t think he will ever realize the impact of that first conversation. I turned into a schoolgirl again. I was so happy that the cute guy had taken time out of his day to talk to me. In part of our conversation he gave me encouragement, and told me that he’s always around if I need advice on the equipment. I walked away on cloud 9 and more determined than ever.
He is just a genuinely good guy. He’s friendly with everyone – and he treated me just the same as the next person at the gym. He didn’t discard me because I was (and am) fat. He took an interest in me and immediately saw past the fat. When I’m feeling down it helps me to remember that he, a stranger, saw that I was more than just a ‘fat person’. I do not see him very often anymore, but we are still in touch and his smile from across gym gives me the same encouragement it did as when we had our first chat.
I always try to at least smile and acknowledge people. I have no idea what is going through their minds and even just a smile can go a long way. Don’t underestimate the impact, the power, of a smile. 😀