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Nofisat Shamsideen: I Had to Find Myself to Lose All My Weight

Nofisat Shamsideen

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The universe is full of a myriad of forces, most of them unknown. Humans are a small part of these forces, so we have little or no control over how they shape our lives.

My name is Shamsideen Nofisat. I’m 24 years old. I wear a size 8. Three years ago, I wore a size 20.

Recently when I posted a throwback picture from three years ago, most of the new friends I made while serving couldn’t believe that was me. I got a lot of how did you do it? What did you use? questions, and when I told them I basically did nothing I’d never tried in the past, most didn’t believe, and some accused me of keeping my weight-loss “secret”.

I always work on not letting people project their opinions onto me. But it is recently I realised that the reason I constantly and consciously try to work on that is because letting people’s words affect me has become my subconscious reaction to my external environment. Due to this flaw of mine, I started telling people what they want to hear. It’s a diet. I starved myself. I walked long miles.

It all really bothered me to the point of irritation, and made me look inward about the weight-loss comments. I got scared. What if I’m unwell? but I know I feel well because I don’t have any health issues. The situation made me sit and brood for days, because I know I starved myself in the past and went on diets; how come I lost all that weight without even trying hard to? Then it finally clicked.

My whole life, I’d always disassociated from my environment. I did things but never felt them. I saw things but didn’t want them. It was a way of life I’d grown accustomed to. I knew I had to travel back in time in my head to know the “how and why” of my situation.

The first thing I learned was that I have no real memories of my teenage years. I only have snapshots of a few events. I read about it, and found that we lose memories when we deal with trauma, especially trauma not grieved. It was at that point I got the epiphany; I’m the last of eight children of my mother, hence she used to dote on me. She was my world, everything started and ended with her. I had friends and a semblance of relationship with my siblings, but my mother was always at the centre of everything, she was the dot that connected every facet of my life. When I lost her, I didn’t allow myself to grieve nor cry, some people blamed it on the fact that I was just ”nine years old.” Dad said I was really “brave.” He still takes pride in it till date. Looking back at that point in my life, I saw the locked grief always hovering above my head,  how I lived among my family still feeling like a stranger, because I struggled to connect with anyone.

I clung to my immediate sibling hoping get a semblance of the bond I used to share with my mom. We got real close and I started to get comfortable in my skin again. But months after that, I lost her also. I was completely and utterly drained, and didn’t even try to process my loss when she died. I didn’t shed a tear, not when she was buried, not even when I saw her resting place for the first time.

These events brought about a potent and powerful shift in my life, a shift I didn’t realize when or how it happened, a shift I didn’t even recognise. When a person goes through a trauma such as the loss of a loved one, the impact of the trauma and how we are able to process it, plus the support we receive in dealing with that trauma, is very important. Because it determines the body and mind’s response to that trauma. In my case, my response was to disconnect—be emotionally detached from people and things in order to escape the psychological impact of loss when processed. I started hating getting close to people because of my fear of losing them, I never let people love me. My relationship with my siblings could be likened to a mosquito buzzing in the ear of a person on the other side of a sound proof glass: I could see it, but woouldn’t be bothered by it. I lived my life like this into my young adult years, not even aware of the wrongness of it all.

After I graduated from the university and I travelled to Edo State for my orientation program, I had an epiphany about a lack of fire in me. I suddenly realized that I wanted to feel more, participate rather than observe. It isn’t much for regular folks, but for the first time in my life, I was part of the present and I revelled in it.

My redeployment to Abuja was the major shift in my life, I made a conscious decision to be happy, do more, feel more, be more, to at least try and see if it hurts. Well, it did, when I chose to bond with the wrong person fighting his own demons. And a few other times. But at least I felt something! I felt so many emotions that were exclusively mine, a notable one my laughter. I used to imitate people’s laughter because I’d never really laughed from the heart. The day I laughed with my whole heart when I was in Abuja, I stopped and processed it. Then I cried. I cried for my mother. I cried for my sister. I cried for all the love I’d shunned, all the extended hands of friendship I’d scorned, and for all the time I didn’t allow myself to simply feel.

When my soul recognized this shift, my heart became lighter and I laughed more. Then it connected to my body and I started losing all the weight I’d gained through years of emotional and psychological depression, I fully embraced my love for books, learned to articulate my feelings and make a conscious effort to work on how to deal with my emotions.

I realized I gained all the weight because I was neglectful of my feelings and what makes me happy, and I realized “looking good” was one of those things. On account of this, I started to exercise my body a lot, got on strict diet and firm calories discipline. So that’s it, y’all, Yes, I lost a ton of weight, but it wasn’t only through starving or dieting. It was that, coupled with finding myself and healing my soul. But, most importantly, it was through God.

I'm a free spirit with the passion for reading,writing and research,my best pass time activity; is me curled up in a comfy position reading a good book. I love sharing my experiences from the books I've read,you can follow me on goodreads @Abbyreadabook and on [email protected]

28 Comments

  1. MyNameIsNotLisa

    October 2, 2020 at 5:45 pm

    I can’t remember the last time I left a comment here, but I just had to do so today. Thank you for sharing your moving story with us, Nofisat. You’re a wonderful writer and an inspiring person. I wish you long-lasting peace.

  2. Zainny

    October 2, 2020 at 6:40 pm

    Proud of you 😍

  3. Sheriff

    October 2, 2020 at 6:44 pm

    Reading this is making me want to know you more. I really can’t describe my feelings right now

  4. Hajara

    October 2, 2020 at 6:49 pm

    I cried through out the read.love how brave you are .

  5. Shile

    October 2, 2020 at 6:59 pm

    What a yet incredible piece of carefully balanced literature. Your words are so relatable and thought provoking!

  6. Spirit

    October 2, 2020 at 7:04 pm

    Weight or no weight , you are one of my favorite people on Earth. I am glad you are happy and please baby, write more !!

  7. Okikiola opebiyi

    October 2, 2020 at 7:06 pm

    This brought tears to my eyes, I love you sweet aunt

  8. Kudirat shamsideen

    October 2, 2020 at 7:19 pm

    That got to me really hard.but in the end we thank God for the healing.love you sis💕

  9. Nana Firdausi

    October 2, 2020 at 7:22 pm

    I’m so proud of you,your weight loss journey and becoming a better person inspired people including me

  10. Biodun Ishola

    October 2, 2020 at 7:40 pm

    I agree with you that weight loss should not just be about starvation. It must come from within. I will complement this position with a statement credited to Publibus who said a man is happy if he believes he is. In same manner, a man can control his state of health and wellbeing from his mind.

    Those who want to loss weight needs to visualise what they want to accomplish and first make it work within their inner self.

    Permit me to commend your style of writing.

  11. Shamsideen Kafayat

    October 2, 2020 at 7:47 pm

    I love you Sissy❤,thanks for sharing this with us,it really brought tears to my eyes,it took me down painful and sweet memory lane. More beautiful years together my love.

  12. Dami

    October 2, 2020 at 7:51 pm

    Beautiful article and eloquently written. Thank you for sharing your story.

  13. Shalewa

    October 2, 2020 at 8:00 pm

    I’m really glad you took the bold step…love you babygirl

  14. Shamsideen tayyibah

    October 2, 2020 at 8:00 pm

    A bright, loving, and beautiful sister like you is worth more than an ocean full of gold and diamonds.my sweet and adorable Herbie,a girl with a beautiful heart. May God always bless you with the things that your heart desires. I’m glad that an outstandingly remarkable girl like you is my immediate sister.The sky is your limit sisto😘

  15. Susan

    October 2, 2020 at 8:25 pm

    I can relate to this so well. I’m super proud of you

  16. Daramola

    October 2, 2020 at 8:30 pm

    Wow………..Naphisa this is awesome

  17. Abibat

    October 2, 2020 at 9:05 pm

    Nice write up Abby

  18. Toofreeze

    October 2, 2020 at 9:23 pm

    Wow…….this is lovely

  19. Loqman

    October 2, 2020 at 10:19 pm

    Good too hear and see this.

  20. Yetunde Awoyele

    October 2, 2020 at 10:35 pm

    I’m really happy for you dear, I couldn’t even believe my eyes. You look good and beautiful.

  21. AbisolaNene

    October 2, 2020 at 11:00 pm

    I’m lost for appropriate words.God has healed what’s been wounded in you.you are a rare gem👍

  22. Anita

    October 3, 2020 at 6:46 am

    Nice one dear

  23. Joel Moses Babatunde

    October 3, 2020 at 10:02 am

    This is one of the best things I have read in a while. I mean, for the fact that I know you personally, I asked alot of questions too, regarding your transformational-weight-loss. I am so proud of you girlllll. I am happy you have placed a premium price on yourself. Keep prioritizing you and loving you. You are an amazing woman. Go girl.

  24. Elle

    October 3, 2020 at 12:55 pm

    Bella, we can’t view comments o, just an orange line showing.

    1
  25. The Man behind you

    October 3, 2020 at 2:10 pm

    Abby! I can’t say much but share love to you. Just so you know, you need to leave the road for the MAN to walk pass you ❤

  26. Saheed olaiwola SHAMSIDEEN.

    October 3, 2020 at 2:22 pm

    Well done hun, I’m so proud of you Abi. My likle sister. You have always remained our best concerns,most especially,after losing the best mum on the planet earth. I personally thank God for your progressive moves. I pray God Almighty continue to bless your ways. May you live long to attain your destiny and become one of the most successful women of achievements. Keep it up babe, as ur big bros continues to support you spiritually,financially and morally. 🙏💖💖.

  27. Feyi

    October 3, 2020 at 5:54 pm

    Nice right up dear, full of things I knew not. Oluwaseun

  28. Joel Osteen Sermons

    October 3, 2020 at 6:24 pm

    Nice one , i love that

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