It’s January. That means that the holiday season is over, and it’s a brand new year. It also means every social media platform will have every type of weight loss ad imaginable. People telling you to start intermittent fasting or keto or to jump at the chance for this bargain deal at the gym to lose that “holiday weight.”
For someone like me, these ads start a vicious cycle in my head of negative body talk. I’ve been in recovery for disordered eating and orthorexia for about two years. It hasn’t been easy, but I feel like I’m at a more comfortable place with food. I don’t have “cheat” or “treat” days. I just eat. By far, the hardest part for me has been accepting my new body. My tummy is softer, my thighs are bigger, and although I do not weigh or measure myself, I know I weigh more than I did last year just by the size of my jeans.
Does This Extra Weight Change Me?
Am I less of a person because my thighs touch? Am I a bad person because I have a lot more tummy rolls than I used to? Why do I put so much emphasis on what size jeans I need to buy at the store? The truth is that it’s a stigma we’ve been taught. We weren’t born worrying about what our birth weight was. We weren’t concerned when we were 5 and could eat all the cookies until we felt sick. Our culture teaches us to look a certain way, eat certain foods, and exercise a certain amount.
I’m still the person who enjoys exercise. My body still craves vegetables after eating delicious rich holiday food for two weeks straight, there is just more of me. I’m still the same person on the inside. I’m still a loyal wife and friend, I’m still a mother who loves her kids more than anything. Most importantly, I’m still a kind person who genuinely cares about others’ feelings.
We Are More Than Our Weight
I’ve been posing this question to myself – “Why do we find the need to shrink our bodies?” So much time is spent worrying about the number of carbs or calories a food contains that we miss out on so many more important things. Repeat after me…
We are allowed to take up space in this world!
Let’s not spend our lives trying to shrink ourselves. Let’s appreciate our bodies for what they do for us daily. Regardless if we like the way they look our not. We can enjoy the yummy foods any day we want. We can eat vegetables any day we want. Exercise can be done when we are in the mood for it, not because we feel like we have to. Intermittent fasting, keto, etc. can be done because it makes us feel better internally. Not because we hope to make us look better externally.
Our lives don’t have to be spent trying to get into those size 2/4/6 whatever jeans. We are not less than because we decided to eat without restriction. We don’t have to spend hours at the gym working out to the point of exhaustion to burn off a donut. Our weight or jean size does not determine our worth as a human being. How we treat others, especially ourselves, is far more critical than our weight. If we are to shrink one thing in 2020, let’s shrink the amount of negative self-talk we have for ourselves when it comes to our weight.