So, the other day I was perusing some new-to-me weight loss blogs and I came across a lady who was sick of how fat she was. As she was beginning her weight loss journey and blog she bemoaned the excess fat on her body and vented about how disgusted she was with herself.
If I remember correctly, as of that post she was 5′ 8″ and 185.5 pounds.
Um, I’m about 20 pounds lighter and a full 4 inches shorter. So, basically I’m about the same size or even bigger than this person. And, well, trust me…my body doesn’t look as thin as hers in my underthings.
But I don’t feel ugly or fat.
Now, I understand it sounds like she is at her highest weight and I’m at my adult lowest right now, so we are looking at this size from two very different angles. However, the self hatred that came across in her post reminded me of an issue I’ve seen in the weight loss world since I began my journey that saddens me.
Over the years I have watched women verbally abuse themselves about how fat they have gotten. They are disgusted with how they’ve let themselves go and put on so much weight.
Many of them are motivated by that disgust to do something about the weight. However, more times than not I see women get to the goal weight and they still don’t like what they see.
The self loathing that prompted them to lose weight is still there.
Sometimes a small amount of weight creeps back on and the loathing begins again; or some constantly chase the strictest diet or exercise regimen in the hopes of getting that perfectly flat stomach, etc. etc.
They’ve reached a healthy weight, but they still can’t love themselves as they are.
And I find it all very sad.
You see, I remember an article* I read the summer before I started my weight loss journey wherein the author said a person deserves to love his or herself “even if you never lose another pound”. I remember I looked in my bedroom mirror and realized I couldn’t truly say I loved myself the way I was – 5’4″ and 220 pounds – and I decided then to try and accept who I was, as I was. It was hard, but I worked on it.
To this day I truly feel letting go of that self loathing was the real beginning of my journey.
So, to this lady, and all those like her, let me encourage you to learn to love yourself as you are. Self acceptance will make the journey to lose weight a little bit easier. And in then end you’ll be happier because you’ll not only feel strong and confident for succeeding in your weight loss journey, but you’ll feel content because you’ve come to accept the body God gave you…imperfections and all.
*True Kindness Has No Calories by Geneen Roth for Good Housekeeping Magazine
Excellent point Leah. The self-love, self-acceptance part of this journey is so complicated isn't it?
I think the important part about your first thoughts are that you and she are in completely different parts of the journey. She is probably in shock at her weight because she has never weighed that much before, whereas you have worked very hard to get to your low weight. Hopefully she will be able to move past the scorn she feels for herself and get going on her plan!