top of page

The time I got body shamed in dance


Little Jecca at the ripe age of 10 in my first year of dance! (this is when I actually enjoyed it...)

Me in my first year of dance. (when I actually enjoyed it lol)

I'm actually so pumped to tell this story. When I look back on it, I remember feeling so horrible and crying myself to sleep. God, I wish I could see that girl now, and thank her. "Why on Earth would you thank her, Jecca?" Well, my friends, I used that horrible, negative comment as motivation. I used her words and actions as motivation to work harder. She thinks she made me feel horrible, (well she did) but lol jokes on you, girl, you were one of the reasons I can do 8 chin-ups now! (Got my new record yesterday, woop woop). If anyone reading this has been made fun of for how you look, use that hate for power and rise up. Show them you're the bigger person. Show them that you slay in every way! Alright, enough life lessons, here's the story:

Picture this; the year is 2014, and little Jeccster, at the ripe age of 11, went to dance every Wednesday at 3:30. I did dance the year before at this same studio, (which I will obviously not name because I'm not a complete jerk) and I really enjoyed it. I made friends and I looked forward to going. But, this year, something was different. I didn't know what happened. My teacher was mean, the girls in my class were mean, and I just hated going. I was very self conscious at that age, as I wasn't as skinny as the other girls, (which is so sad and insane that I was self-conscious at such a young age). I hated putting on my leotard and I felt so exposed and uncomfortable wearing it. All my friends at that time were super skinny and I just didn't have a high metabolism and I ate a lil' too much junk, (buuuuuuut, yolo amirite), so I was really aware of my weight and I always compared myself to other girls. I even remember one day at dance I was looking in the mirror and I thought I looked a bit skinnier and I was so happy. But, of course, the next class I thought I looked horrible. (Which literally makes me want to cry because I was still so beautiful inside and out and I had no reason to feel that way </3.) Anyway, (getting a bit side tracked here), most of the girls in the class were either mean to me, or didn't talk to me. I tried to get to know them and talk to them but they would just give me a dirty look and do a sashay-step-jete across the floor away from me. Most of those girls wanted nothing to do with me, but, this one girl, hated me. (Again not going to use a name because me=not a complete jerk), but, let us call her, Ash. So, Ash was a suuuuuuper skinny girl who was incredibly flexible and probably the best dancer in our class, so, as you can probably already guess, she was a very, very, confident girl. I remember she would always give me dirty looks and laugh at me, and I didn't know why. I was nothing but nice to her, why did she hate me? It didn't really bug me that much, I just was confused at what I had done. I remember one day, I asked her what grade she was in. She replied "Grade 5. You?" and I said "Grade 6." and then she said "I'm actually in grade 7." and that really puzzled me. So, I think I replied in a very confused state "You just lied to me?" and she said "Yep." and sauntered away. That's when major red flags came up. This girl really hated me and I had no idea what her deal was, but, I remained kind, as I didn't have a reason to be sassy with her, so, why would I be? Okay, I realize I'm totally dragging this on so i'll just get to the good bit. It was a couple weeks before our recital, and at this point in the "dance year", I hated every second of it and I never wanted to go. I would literally cry to my mom begging her to let me stay home, but I couldn't because, my God, dance is expensive, girl! Anyway, my teacher, who I also hated, and hated me for some RANDOM REASON THAT I STILL DON'T UNDERSTAND, was handing out costumes. She was going through all the different sizes and handing them out to who she thought would fit in them. She started with larges, and went down in size. Still at the larges, she had her last large costume in her hand and she was scanning to see who to give it to. Keep in mind, Jecca did not have a costume yet. (Can you guess where this is going?). I was a larger girl, and I knew I was going to end up with a large costume, which I was totally okay with. All the other girls who were receiving larges were just tall. Every. Single. Girl. In. My. Class. Was. Really. Freakin. Skinny. That made me feel extra self-conscious. Where was I? Ah, yes, my teacher scanning the room to see who needs a large. She was looking through the girls and she kind of said to herself "Hm, who needs a large....." and I knew it was going to be me so I was kind of looking around the room to the other girls and I saw Ash. She was kind of secretively pointing at me and clenching her teeth as if I looked disgusting and needed a large. It was as if she was saying "Yeah, over here, Jessica could use a large. Hopefully she can fit in it! *insert bratty laugh here*". But she wasn't. It was silent. All I could see was her gesturing at me, and looking at me as if I was a monster and clenching her teeth. I made eye contact with her, and kind of looked shocked and upset. But, ladies and gents, the absolute worst part of this story is, the teacher saw Ash do that to me, and SHE GAVE ME THE LARGE COSTUME WITHOUT SAYING ANYTHING. LIKE. GIRL. WTF?! She could clearly see the tears in my eyes, but she didn't care. I didn't/don't care that I got the large. That was my size and that's totally cool. What made me upset, is that she saw a girl make fun of me, for so many classes, and she saw this girl gesturing at me in this horrible way, and she did nothing. I remember holding back tears that whole class, and it's still something I think about all the time.

I wish I could see Ash, and show her how happy and confident I am. Show her how her negative gesture made me turn my life around, and lit a fire under my ass. So, thank you, Ash. Thank you, horrible teacher. Thank you, unfair, body-shaming, dance studio. It was a great lesson. You helped me get where I am today.

That's the end, my friends. I hope this teaches some of you that some things that might seem horrible at the time, turn into positives if you use them to your advantage, like I did. Prove these people wrong. Prove to them, that you're worth everything and more that they are. Because the absolute best feeling in the world, is being the bigger person, and realizing you were right, proving them wrong. I also want to end this by saying, I had no reason to be self-conscious, and in NO WAY AT ALL am I saying you should be too. DON'T. You are absolutely beautiful just as you are, and you shouldn't have to change a thing about you because someone else thinks you should. All that truly matters, is how you act on the inside. How you are towards people, and how you decide to mentally live your life. I was perfect the way I was, and the fact that this girl made me feel like I wasn't, is absolutely horrible, and so sad.

YOU ARE WORTH IT. YOU DON'T NEED TO CHANGE A THING. LOVE YOURSELF, BOO BOO. SLAY EVERYDAY.

Jess <3

bottom of page