I am not my weight.
Besides that little tidbit at the beginning, most of the meeting revolved around the thoughts we have and the things we say to ourselves about ourselves. And then, how to combat those negative thoughts. And the instructor shared a Buddhist quote, “With our thoughts we make the world.” So true.
I have thought a lot recently about what this all means for me: losing weight and running this marathon. I think, originally, the weight loss started as a desire to be this perfect package. Yep…I’m admitting it. It was all about the superficial. I have always struggled with my weight and I have always let that get in the way of my life…well, my love life. And while I don’t necessarily want to get married any time soon, I do want to believe that it’s possible…and, up until recently, I just didn’t believe it was without fixing my “packaging”. While I have watched friends and acquaintances much heavier than I was date and marry, I just didn’t understand how that happened. Here’s a little insight into my warped mind: I would always ask myself how on earth someone could want to marry them when they were that heavy?
I had bought what society was selling, hook, line and sinker. I really truly believed that no guy would ever find me attractive weighing what I weighed (which, incidentally is about what I weigh right now…today). It didn’t matter that I was smart, and funny, and talented in many other areas of my life. I didn’t come in the right packaging, so none of those other things mattered. No one would ever see what was inside because they didn’t like the package.
As life went on and I matured (about two years ago), I started to see things differently. I started to see that these men who had married these girls that I knew really did love them and really did find them attractive. Well, I’d like to say that this revelation helped me, but it didn’t really…at first. I am reminded of a scene from Someone Like You. Jane (Ashley Judd) is sitting on her bed and Eddie (Hugh Jackman) asks her why she is holding on to her stupid one cow theory. The conversation goes back and forth and finally, Jane says, ” Because if this theory is wrong, men don’t leave all women, Eddie, they leave me.” Upon discovering that men really could love fat women, suddenly I realized there must be something else wrong with me.
And I would now like to introduce you to “something else”: I truly believed that I, looking the way I did, was not good enough to deserve a relationship. Period. It didn’t matter that I had all of these other things going for me. It didn’t make a difference in the world. So, prior to there ever being any kind of possibility for a relationship, I had already decided that I wasn’t thin enough or pretty enough for someone, anyone, to want to date me and so I made sure it didn’t happen.
After years of this, with the help of a few absolutely beautiful men (inside and out) whom I did date, I discovered that I was attractive and dateable. And yes, it would be wonderful if I could have discovered that all on my own, but there’s something that happens when a guy looks into your eyes and with all sincerity, tells you that he thinks you are beautiful that just doesn’t happen when I do the same thing to myself.
I was the one who had made the decision that men wouldn’t like me. I was the one who could call them all jerks because of my theory. I was the one making my lack of relationships their fault. Slowly, I began to see the light. It wasn’t that there was something else wrong with me. It wasn’t that there was anything wrong with me at all, except that I believed that something was wrong with me…okay, and perhaps I am a very pale shade of crazy, but who isn’t?
And there is a matter of attraction and there have been, and will continue to be, guys that simply are not attracted to me. And there have been, and will continue to be, guys that I am simply not attracted to. And, unfortunately, when you have told yourself the same lie for 15+ years, I don’t know if the echoes ever completely silence themselves…so, when I do find myself attracted to a guy, the first thought in my head is that he won’t think I’m attractive…but I am learning to silence those thoughts quickly.
Tonight, as I sat in this meeting and we discussed “talking back to the lies” (yes, it’s a bit like group therapy) I realized that I am on the right path. As I said, the echoes of the lies are still there, but I am getting really good at telling them to…well, I won’t tell you exactly what I say to them, but I make them go away. And while I still don’t love the way I look, I have this amazing appreciation for what my body can do and how blessed I am to have it.
I know I said this in my last post, but I really believe that my life has worked exactly as it should have. I believe that my trials are mine for a reason. And while I have wondered over the past few weeks why the heck I couldn’t have figured all of this weight stuff out five, or ten, or fifteen years ago, I have a feeling that this, too, is exactly as it should be. My mind needed to be ready before my body could be.
And now to the weight part of this weight loss journey. I lost 3 lbs this week, making for a total of 22 lbs. Even through the hormonal binging. The keys for this week? Even with the chocolate cravings (and consumption) I still wrote everything down. I didn’t verbally abuse myself, even one time, for eating too much or making poor choices…I just accepted it for what it was, gave myself a little pep talk and moved forward. And, as always, I exercised.