Friday, 5 November 2010

Believe You Can...

And you will. Some of you may know I love dancing... What many of you do not know was that at the tender age of 8, I was rejected to join the Chinese Dance Group as a ECA. Because I was fat.

 Me at Primary 1.

This was me at the age of 8.

Oh my god...I can't believe I'm showing you guys these pictures...though somehow, I felt I needed to. I've come a long way to becoming the pretty lady I am today. So kids, if you look like oh-my-gawd now, don't fret, because there IS such a thing as 女大十八变. ;)

So I got rejected. Never mind. I proceeded on to learn how to do cartwheels from my then-best-friend who was already in the ECA, because I was intrigued when I saw her do them. And I mastered the cartwheel then. Well at least that was a first step~

Come Primary 3, I persisted and asked the Chinese Dance teacher in-charge again. Maybe because I was so persistent and had wanted to join Chinese Dance so much, she relented and let me. I was ecstatic. I worked hard and despite all the pain from the splits and bridges the coach was trying to make us do, I bore with the pain. Because I really loved dancing then. Come Primary 4, I was made the leader of the Chinese Dance group, even though there were other Primary 6s around. I was worried about the seniority issue, but that turned out fine, when the seniors saw that I was responsible and my dance techniques were good enough to lead the rest of the group. Imagine my pride~ =) And remember, I was rejected before. Of course I was still fat then, just not SO fat, but what do kids know about losing weight?

Maybe it's because people kua suay me then (Aiyoh so fat how to dance?), but I was determined to show them I could. And I did. Come SYF (Singapore Youth Festival. It's a big thing for dance groups in schools here in Singapore, and occurs once every 2 years) when I was in Primary 6, and I was made one of the leads for the dance item we were showcasing.

That's me in the front row, just beside the teacher. The teacher who refused to let me join? She's the one on the far right. I remember her - Mdm

So I went on to high school. Nanyang was renowned for their dance, amongst many other prominent CCAs, and for the year ones, we had to audition for many of the CCAs to get in. I think we had to audition for all? Can't remember, but I remembered EVERY ONE had to audition for dance. Guess they wanted the best physique, groove, techniques, whatever in there. And guess what? Yup~ I got it~!!! I was grateful, considering I looked like this:

These 2 pictures were of me at Secondary 1, at the age of 13.

Okay I was STILL teased for being fat. (I can so understand why.) I don't remember eating a lot, and neither was I a glutton, but I somehow couldn't shed the weight Grandpa and Grandma had fed me in my growing up years. Too doting. Not that I'm complaining, but it did cause me a lotta humiliation growing up. =(

Dance training in Nanyang caused me to lose quite a bit of weight. I dropped from 65kg (yes, that picture on top was me at 65kg) to 60kg? 58kg? Enough to not be round.
Then there was the chance to go to Seoul for an International Dance Festival showcase. The catch? We had to be selected. The Dance Society in Nanyang was divided into 2 different groups, taught by 2 different coaches, so that's like about 60 of us. I was almost nearly passed over I think, and till today I still think that had one girl not pulled out for whatever reason, I wouldn't have made it into the 20 that was selected. Nevertheless, since the opportunity was now mine, I had to make the most of it, and PERFORM.

 Me with the dancers from Seoul.

It was tough, having had to compete with the other skinny girls in the group. And life would have been easier had I been skinny too. See, it's not as adults that we become vain and have the pressure to succumb to society views of how thin one should be. I got it when I was just 8. Yes I had the passion. Yes I showed people I could. Especially in Primary School. But when you are with a group of people who have the passion, and who could perform too, you lose out because they will always look better being thinner. Fcuk the society for always telling people to love themselves as they are, embrace their body no matter what their's all bullsh*t. They talk. But deep inside, they will always prefer it you weren't fat. And honestly, we ourselves would prefer it if we weren't fat. We're sleepy most of the time, climbing stairs can literally make us pant our lungs out, we sweat like pigs, and not to mention the annoying discomfort between our fat thighs when they rub against each other, especially during P.E, when they will cause the P.E shorts to form a disgusting-looking triangle at your nether regions. All those who were fat, or are still fat, can relate to all of the above, can't you?

I know. I have been there.

So I started skipping meals. Sometimes just eating 1 slice of papaya for recess, and that was it. I brought cross-stitch to school so I could keep myself occupied during recess time so I wouldn't eat. I bought this TV Innovation product called Velform that I applied and wrapped myself in pressure garments for an hour every night. I saw results in 2-3 weeks. Friends saw the results too, and asked how I did it.

But that wasn't enough.

My mum understood the pressure I was going through, her being fat herself while she was in school. She helped by going to the doctor's to ask for Duromin, because she knew doctors would never prescribe it to me. Because I wasn't obese. I was just chubby. Not enough for the doctors to prescribe me pills to manage my weight, but enough to cause me my confidence. I was a kid who put on a brave front and showed people that nothing could get me down, but inside, I was always insecure about how I looked, especially when it came to dancers and competition.

With the Duromin, I took one pill every morning, with 1 slice of bread. I would eat nothing else the whole day, except a few spoonfuls of rice with a little bit of whatever my grandma cooked every night. And on top of that, I put in 110% effort when it came to dance practices. I lost weight of course, and for the first time since I was 3, I was actually thin. I had a 25-inch waist.

 This was me at Sec 4. If you are wondering why I had long hair - dancer's privilege. SYF competition was around the corner, that was why. 

Main point was. I really lost weight. By this time, I was weighing at 50kg. 
 Compare this to my Sec1 picture...
I had lost 15kg.

I wasn't skinny, I still had arm fat which I couldn't get rid of, even until today. It bothered me, the arms. But I didn't think much about it, not until I had to act in TV shows and Wawa Jiejie had flabby 'bye-bye arms'!!!!

 53kg is NOT good enough for TV. You will still look fat at many angles....
To be exact, for my height at 1.61m, anything above 47kg is too much. Jeanette Aw is 43kg. Jolin Tsai? 39kg. That's why they look the way they do on TV. 妈呀~ 我还得减10公斤~~~

One time~ Two time~ Uh uh uh~ ”

The arms are still a bother. I know girls who are unsatisfied with themselves even when they weigh 45kg. This was the thinnest I became. After which, my weight constantly hovered between 52kg - 54kg. Even until today.

I didn't stop dancing after Sec 4. I continued dancing with my Nanyang dance coach, who was also teaching at community centres. She changed my life, in a way... I can't find a decent picture of her at the moment, but I'll show you guys when I have the chance.

Me on the far left.
I had the chance to work with this famous dancer from Mongolia - 玛格列特老师 (not sure if that's how her name was written). She taught me the keep-your-body-still-but-just-vibrate-your-shoulders
Eh it's a LOT of 内力 okay!!!

Now that I'm no longer in school, dancing competitively is no longer something I can achieve. Nor is dancing on stage. You see, I'm a dancer, not so much a choreographer. 王慧力老师 is no longer teaching dance in Singapore (she has returned to China for bigger things), and honestly, unless I join a community centre group, or take part in some charity show, I won't have much chance to dance in front of an audience again. (Being Wawa Jiejie doesn't count.) It won't make sense for me to take a step back and become just a dancer again, will it? I want to move on to bigger things. Be a dancing singer, perhaps? My role model was always Namie Amuro and the Pussycat Dolls, before Jolin Tsai became so dance-y. Now I've added Jolin to the list. ;)

If you're fat, and ugly, and have many people despise you because of that, don't despair. Think of me. And the song "When You Believe" by Mariah Carey & Whitney Houston.

There can be miracles, when you believe
Though hope is frail, it's hard to kill
Who knows what miracles you can achieve
When you believe, somehow you will
You will when you believe...

This song never fails to inspire me~
Or that 七十二变 song~ =D

The more they laugh at you and try to get you down, the more you have to make them eat their words. Those people who made fun of me then? They're probably chao lao by now, and probably gained weight, stuck in a job they don't like. Me? I've blossomed. I've lost weight, and on the way to losing more (losing weight is a woman's lifelong job). Oh, and I'm doing stuff I absolutely adore - blogging, acting, occasionally singing, and attending dance classes again...maybe I'll get to dance for you one day. =D

 And I don't mean Chinese Dance. I happen to do Jazz, and MTV as well. ;)

女大十八变?看我七十二变!Believe you can, and you will~ *smiles*



  1. i can still rem when i 1st saw you on the plane to shanghai!
    haha =)

  2. I really really love this post of yours, and although I'm only 16, I've been through a similar past as yours! I was a fat kid, but I've lost weight since then by jogging lots... This post gave me inspiration to achieve my target after I've finished my O's! It's not going to be an easy process, but knowing that someone is working hard on it at the same time gives me so much inspiration! To you, me and all the girls out there who wants to change for the better: Hang in there and remember that your efforts will surely pay off ^^ Jiayou!

  3. 超厉害的啦!15kg is a lot you know! Great success~

  4. Next Biggest Loser7 November 2010 at 04:41

    Thank you for this post. It was really inspiring :)

  5. that second picture of you in the orange(?) dress looks like that cute little girl in the hk movie "the protege"! haha!

  6. I lost 10+kg too!!! Just like you.. i was 65kg in sec 1! haaaaaaaa.. dropped till 49kg in sec 3 but hovering ard 50-51kg with flabby arms/legs now cos no more schooling! *sads* n i'm ya height as well!

    v inspiring post. u're v brave cos i hid all my fat photos! haha..


  8. wat pri sch r @ ? cuz tt look like my sch uniform.. haha.. & i aso chinese dance during pri sch..

  9. lianhua pri sch. =)

  10. How to lose wt? can teach us? in fact u r quite slim now!!

  11. After reading your post, I WANT TO SLIM DOWN TOO!! I shall not wait for another tomorrow that wont be coming!


  12. i chanced upon your blog, and i guess you are technically my shi jie. i remember you, because you were an outstanding dancer in ny! i was in the 25 group, and you were in 26. your story of "slimming down", and the madness that that entails, resonates so much with me. i was crazy trying to maintain my weight at 48kg, even though it was normal for everyone to be naturally skinny. i didn't have those genes.

    anyway, glad that i chanced upon your blog! you appear to be doing well now and im happy for you.

  13. Hey Anon!!! What's ur name??? Do I know you? =D

  14. hello! reading this post and the sg-2000 machine post conjunctively - and really wanting to get the machine; but too bad i stay with my parents and they'd kill me if they know i blasted $3k on that! :( (especially when im still schooling)

    and i wished i could believe again... lost a total of 15kg through sheer hard work - very diligently counting calories, exercising very frequently, eating very healthily. initially, the results showed and after a few years, i lost a total of 15kg; but recently... i let loose a little, ate just a little bit more, started allowing sweet drinks and desserts back into my life (not that much, but yes, allowing them) - i gained back 5-7kg... extremely extremely upset, and kind of at a loss of what to do now. i do hope i can gain that strength back. :(

  15. It takes a lot of courage to be able to post an entry like this to the world- and you did it just so you can inspire everyone to make a difference and to not give up.
    That's very honourable ;) Thanks for that! Keep up your good work Silver!

  16. Anon Mar 26>> We will!!! I'm a little slack now myself, but we will lose that extra weight and be healthily slim again!!!

  17. maybe you just need to watch your sugar, and calorie intake. Its like going to a chinese restaurant. You can either call steamed rice or fried rice. Both are also staple food, to go with those side dishes or 小菜,but the fried rice is pack with those unnecessary calories and fat from the egg, oil/butter/margarine it was fried with.
    I know it's really impossible to control your diet. But that climb up the stairs after that sumptuous meal which you think can wash away your guilt or part of it from does not work at all either.

  18. Your determination is admirable :)