Almost nine years ago, I had gastric bypass surgery -- completely scrambled my insides -- in order to be
And here is my dilemma.
As I struggle to accept myself, my body and my weight, I have been spending time reading about Health At Every Size. Some seem to poo-poo the movement as making it okay to "let yourself go." I see it more like acknowledging that skinny doesn't equal fit and healthy, and "fat" doesn't necessarily equal unfit and unhealthy. Also, human beings deserve to be treated with respect, despite their pant size. I go around on Facebook telling everyone they should love themselves the way they are, meanwhile, I am a co-facilitator of a weight loss surgery support group that is essentially encouraging people to completely re-arrange their innards. I am honest with the group about my struggles -- to the point where one member actually told me that I needed to stop assuming that everyone who is overweight has a food addiction (although I do stand by my belief that most of us do have some addiction issues, which is why many just switch addictions after their ability to over-eat is taken away from them). I also tell people that only they and their doctors can make the decision to have surgery. I do not support the surgery, but I support their decision to have it, if that's what they choose (if that makes sense).
Now, here's my issue.
Can I truly embrace Health At Every Size when *I* don't want to be fat? No, I didn't say I don't want to be unhealthy. I don't want to be fat. My body hurts. I get all sweaty and gross. I feel ugly. I have met plenty of "fat" people who are probably in better physical shape than I am. But I have more pain and health issues now than I did when I was bigger (sure, age may play a part, or the fact that I'm way more active -- who knows?!). I want women to know they are beautiful regardless of their size but *I* don't feel beautiful at this size.
I can't diet. Or so that's what I tell myself. If I try to follow a strict diet plan, I fall off the wagon quickly, and the compulsion to overeat consumes me. I don't want to diet anyway. It's lame. I have a co-worker constantly trying to police what I put in my mouth. I don't need that. I don't want to do extreme workout programs that boast more about their members' injuries than their success rate. Why can't I just eat a sensible amount of food each day (notice I didn't call it a diet?), exercise daily and be a "normal" size?!
I had fallen into a weight gain pattern over the last few years, but I ended 2012 weighing less than when the year started. It was only by a couple of pounds, but that's a success in my book. I have ended my free-fall (rise?) weight gain. I don't need to lose all 50 pounds, but I would sure take 20. Or 30. Maybe I'd be happy if I lost 30 pounds. Or maybe I'll never be "happy" at all, because despite all of the therapy and happy talk I spout, I truly don't know how to make that happen.
I didn't ask for this screwed up brain, but it's the only one I've got, so I need to learn how to deal (or face a lifetime of misery?!). I am putting this out there to ask for any advice that people have to learn how to truly accept themselves -- their body, their limitations, etc. I am tired of wasting energy on all of this anxiety. I need to change but I don't know how. I am battling a lifetime of being told I'm not good enough and being fat isn't ok. I'm sure many before me have done it, so please share your stories with me. Thank you!! :-)