Over the last several years my confidence has definitely grown and improved. I remember being a young teenager, looking in the mirror and hating everything about myself. My weight, my skin color, hair, teeth, even eye color. There was nothing about myself that I loved but I became very good at hiding this pain. My smile was my greatest mask. I realized that if I had a smile on my face, people would believe I was confident. Now as I have gone up, I know I was not alone in hating myself as a teenager but honestly I don’t remember any of my friends ever talking about that so I just assumed they liked themselves and that was it. I have always been the chubby friend honestly and now I am okay with that. Back then, damn it was hard. Going shopping with my friends was the worst because they would want to go to all these stores that only had sizes 0-12 and I was a size 16 back time which now I would honestly love to be size 16! Either way, going shopping with them always made me very uncomfortable and depressed because I knew I wouldn’t be able to find something that fit me and I would just have to stand there while they enjoyed themselves and found cute outfits. My friends never teased me about my weight or my appearance if anything they always told me how pretty I was or that I looked nice. When they would compliment me, my anxiety and own issues made me think that they were just lying to me to be nice. Taking pictures with my friends was something that didn’t happen often. I have a lot of pictures that I took of my friends but very few pictures have me in them. I would avoid a camera like the plague or I would volunteer to be the one to take the pictures. I hated my picture being taken and even today, I have a problem with it. All of my insecurities come out when I see myself in a picture. “Oh my god, why am I so fat? Ugh, my smile looks stupid, my hair looks bad.” All of this and more would go through my head so I just avoided those situations. I regret this behavior now. I wish I had more pictures of myself from junior high, high school. I do have a lot of fun and amazing memories from that time in my life but unfortunately because of my low self-confidence and hatred of myself I don’t have many pictures to look back on. That will always be one of my greatest regrets from my adolescent years. Don’t let that negative voice in your head stop you from living your life to the fullest. Don’t let insecurities ruin your present but you might regret in the future that you did this.