My name is Avirat Parekh and am all of 20 years old. I must clarify this before you get reading any more that this is an absolutely true account of my journey, do take some inspiration if you would like.
I was a very lanky child attributing to the crazy amount of physical activity that I was doing. Having played cricket, football and other sports I was quiet competitive but always did these things to validate my existence in society, which is of course something I can say now. I did a lot of theatre too and found myself immersed in characters that were often validating societal norms in more than just a few ways. Being a textbook adolescent I’ve always thought I wasn’t good enough. However, succumbing to academic pressure I stopped playing, started binge eating and putting on a lot of weight. I wasn’t in a very healthy relationship and things weren’t the best at home. My parents also decided to part ways after a 12 year marriage, I was foolish enough to blame myself for it. Long story short I started to eat away my problems and came to weigh about 106 Kg and nothing fit, I was looked down upon socially whilst things were very different around me. Everyone seemed to be having an opinion on my weight which I understand sometimes came from a place of concern but often times left me conscious and part worried for myself. Lucky for me that it didn’t drive me crazy scared for myself but the world can do that to you. It’s not a great rosy world out there and very few people will tell you otherwise.
However, I started to out down the weight and as I did begin and saw myself shrinking public perception of me started to change. People apparently started getting a cooler vibe from me etc. It was really scary that the same is testament to how cruel the world can be. Well, I don’t wish to make that point in isolation but this one is for everyone out there. If you look a certain way and are happy with it whatever be it, don’t change. After a rigorous work out routine and intermittent fasting I now weigh 75 Kg and feel so much better because I wasn’t happy with how I looked. Well, that’s my story and yours doesn’t have to be the same. I would love for to hear more about people who are happy with how they look.
What I am trying to say here is that I did this for me and no body else and I feel good about it. However, I would like to tell people to start doing things for themselves because changing for this and for anyone isn’t worth it.
I also, shared this on my Instagram account, Here’s something that has been in the works, although I am always going to be a work in progress. It’s been 91 days since I have eaten like I used to, felt like I used to, breathe like I used to and lived like I used to. I’ve lost 26kgs because I was at my worst weighing in at 106kgs and decided I wanted to take things in my hand, not because it’s better to look a certain way as per societal standards but I rather looked at it as more of challenge that I was determined to accomplish.
I pledge to never fat shame anyone on the basis of me having been on the other side because of how immoral the act is in its essence. My reason to put this out is to not make those dealing with obesity feel worse about themselves or even motivate them because I feel I’m too small a person to do either so treat this more like a personal achievement for someone who had forgotten that he could prove people wrong if he wanted to and made him realise the importance of discipline and continuous effort in yielding goals and aspirations. I have a few people to thank my roommate and colleague Shayak Gupta for showing me the way, @karinahimatsingani for constantly reminding that I don’t have to change as a person in proportion with my physical change and like always loving me for who I am, @geetanjalirajparekh for seeing this through with me and taking inspiration from me. P.S. – Stop making people feel like shit for how they look. Live and let live
I mean every word of what I wrote here and absolutely stand for self love. Feel free to reach out to me if you have anything to talk about, anything at all.
B.A (Hons.) Global Affairs
O.P Jindal Global University