I'm trying to keep my business, my triplets, and my waistline under control. I excel at one of those, fail at another one of those, and one is a work in progress. Which is which is day dependant.

Thursday, February 10, 2011

Lighten Up

I know that I said (and said, and said, and said) that we were not going to talk about the whole weighty issue of weight on this blog any more. I meant it. I really did.

But.. I have things which need to be said. So I am temporarily revoking my, "We shall not discuss weight on this blog" decree.

My thoughts on weight and weight loss could be a post that would go on for several pages. Heck, several days if I let it. So I'm just going to talk about one aspect of weight loss - the simple truths of the emotional side of it. Brace yourself for some BIG news (pun intended): Not all fat people are miserable. Not all fat people FEEL all that fat. Not all fat people feel weighted down by their weight. And certainly, not all fat people are lazy and out of shape.

Go on. Turn that over in your brain for a while. Done? Great. Now I can rant.

I've been actively losing weight for the past 18 months or so. Because of my size, the change wasn't all that obvious until maybe the last 3-4 months, when all of a sudden the butterfly seems to have emerged from her chrysalis. My clavicles are now very prominent, as are my cheekbones. I appear to be taller even though I'm not (please god I hope I'm not). My arse no longer requires it's own postcode, and in most chairs I don't take up the entire seat and then some. So it's no longer a secret that your good friend emzee has disappeared, changed, and become an entirely different person, visually speaking.

But what she has not become is different on the inside. Various friends (who I know are all trying to be supportive and complimentary) have of late asked me a bunch of questions which I find kind of offensive. "Do you feel lighter?" "Do you feel less heavy?" "Do you feel fitter?" "Are you less miserable?" and my personal favourite, "Do you feel BETTER?" I hate the implication of that last one. Did I apparently feel SHITTY before in order to feel BETTER now? Sometimes I want to open my mouth and say, "Oh just fuck off, the lot of you!"

Please don't misunderstand me. I know all these people are just curious, and supportive, and loving, and really wanting to just know what it's like to be significantly different to how you were. Because to them, what's happening is nothing short of miraculous.

Here is the God's honest truth. When I was bigger, I never really felt bad. Sure, I had moments where I wanted to be thinner in order to fit into different or nicer clothes, or not be concerned about chairs in public places, or general 'I wish I was more normal sized' sort of thoughts. But I never ever wasted my life feeling BAD because I was fat. I never felt heavy - like my footfalls would somehow create craters in the concrete side walk. I never really felt unfit - firstly because I've been a fat-but-fit gym junkie for years and secondly because I work an intensely physical job. I never felt miserable about it. Really, being big was just a part of my life just like being brunette is. I never put a huge amount of value into it. Skinny women I know have often said that they too have days when they wanted to have smaller thighs, or days when they didn't feel good about themselves, or days when they wished they were smaller or taller. Isn't that just WOMEN in general? If a skinny woman has a day or two when she feels gross, it's just being human...but apparently the world believes that fat women feel this way twenty four hours a day.

You could not be more wrong. At least, you could not be more wrong ABOUT ME. Because I am sure there are some fat people out there who DO feel miserable all the time about their size, but (news flash!) I think there are thin people who ALSO feel miserable all of the time about their size. (Hello, Body Dysmorphic Disorder. I'm looking at you.)

Here's the other thing. When I was fatter (and make no mistake, I still am fat. My BMI regards me as "overweight" even though I now fit into "normal" clothing sizes) - I had an incredibly blessed life. I had a husband who adored me regardless of size. I had a good job. I had three children who make every day of my life worth living. I had family who love me. I had a bunch of really great skills and talents which I got to use pretty often and people appreciate. I had friends who hung out with me, loved me, laughed with me, shared their lives with me. In short I had ONE SERIOUSLY AWESOMELY FABULOUS LIFE which was filled to the brim with blessings of all sorts.

I'm many, many kilos lighter now. But... I still HAVE ONE SERIOUSLY AWESOMELY FABULOUS LIFE. And I'm still happy with who I am. And I still have days when I wish something or other was smaller or lighter or smoother or thinner or whatever - just like every other woman on this earth. And I still have days when I just feel crappy about myself. But I NEVER have days when I feel somehow better or worse just because of the size I am. I don't feel like my footprints now fall like feathers onto concrete. I don't feel hugely fitter (although I will say my back is thanking me for getting the load off.)

I just feel...like me. The Me who is going to live longer for her children, feel more comfortable in public seating areas, and in general just be a visually different version of me, not an authentically different version of me. So if you happen to see me now (and you saw me way back when), I want you to come up to me and say, "Hey, emzee, how's life these days?" and NOT, "So, emzee, tell me, do you feel BETTER?"

Because I will reserve the right to go all BETTER right there on your skinny or fat ass, with absolutely no warning. And I might be thinner, but I'm also a hell of a lot stronger - in more ways than one.

Consider yourself warned.

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