I went out for a walk today in the desert when it looked sunny outside my window. Out in the desert? NOT! Freezing cold wind, just like yesterday’s walk. It’s supposed to be nice and sunny (No wind) the rest of the week. I can’t wait. I feel the universe owes me a 5 pound loss just for the past 2 walks I’ve taken. Miserable I tells ya, miserable.
I was thinking about why I haven’t lost any weight for months on end and why I’m seeming to be able to start losing again, and I want to talk about it over the next few days because I think it’s valuable. To me anyway, and maybe to someone else out there.
It’s so easy to say, “Oh, you were AFRAID since you lost weight and needed time to adjust.” First, let me say that that’s incredibly simplistic. And way off course. The “nut” of it is the “time to adjust” and that means so many different things -a myriad of different things to different people.
I realized that last winter I was able to stay home in New Mexico for 2 1/2 months (a rarity) so I had that whole time to focus just on me. Once I did start traveling again, on business with my husband, I hadn’t lost enough weight to look radically different. I just looked “better” and people didn’t really know why.
By July or so, I had traveled to Seattle and to Michigan (the places we mostly go-with tons of friends) and in doing so, I sort of “outed” myself as a size 14 instead of a size 22. Obviously I looked different. I’m a very private person and to be so “out there” was not comfortable. The LAST thing I wanted to talk about was how different I looked. So yes, it was troublesome to have people give me that head to toe surprised-sweep-of-the-eyes. That was uncomfortable. But honestly, I think that part was easy to adjust to after a few days.
What wasn’t so easy? People watched me to see how I ate. Did I starve myself to lose the weight? Was I only eating salads all the time? THAT part was hard. I didn’t expect it to be. It freaked me out. Even people I’m very close to were watching me. I felt compelled to eat things I didn’t normally eat, to show them that, yes, I’m normal. NO, I am not starving myself.
I didn’t gain weight by eating things like burgers and fries or whatever. That’s not the point. The point is that I was bending to others expectations, unknowingly, eating what would show me to be a “certain way” instead of just being me and doing whatever the heck I wanted. Sometimes I eat nachos (my favorite food of all time) and sometimes I eat salads and veggie sandwiches for days on end-and fruit. Sometimes I eat fries. Sometimes I eat oatmeal. Who cares? It took me about 2 months to feel like I didn’t have to prove myself. That I could put a distance between others expectations of me and what I chose to do.
This may not make any sense to you at all. I get that. But for those that it does make sense to, I feel your pain. It’s very hard when someone seems angry that you lost weight, someone you care about. You want to show them that you’re still “normal” so you eat something with them that your gut says, DON’T EAT!!!! And you do it anyway. That’s a prison that’s not worth being trapped in. Nothing hurts me more than having to be someone other than myself…or feeling that I have to be.
Now? I don’t care what you say about me. If you have feelings on the matter of how I eat, when I eat? I just think YOU’RE weird. If I want to eat a piece of apple pie, that’s MY choice and it doesn’t MEAN anything. If I want to eat a huge salad while you’re eating lasagna? Who cares. It’s my choice, not yours. It’s not my attempt to put you down, to put you in your place. For Pete’s sake, it’s food and that’s all it is.
It took me a few months to be able to deal with this.
I’ve been able to walk every day lately. That’s something that I had to put aside in November, when the ms was kicking my butt so much. I’m finding it’s not all that difficult to get control of my weight and eating habits now. My weight is going down. Slowly, but it’s going down. I do so hope that I can be at 210 or lower on Wednesday’s weigh-in. I can SEE myself getting under 199 now. I couldn’t before.
*Today: 1750 calories, walked 45 minutes
**I went to bed last night, crazy early, so I forgot to post my day’s ending of calories and exercise. So yesterday:
*Walking: 4 miserable miles in the cold wind.