Last week, upon my request, a friend of mine emailed me a handful of pictures she had from when we lived in Oklahoma. Before we moved she had mentioned once that if I ever got to feeling fat she could give me some pictures to remind me of just how big I used to be.
Here are a few of those pictures:
Besides being overweight, do you notice another common denominator?
Look at my face. I am smiling in every picture.
Although my weight periodically brought moments of sadness in my life it did not rule how I lived every day. I’ve always been pretty outgoing, but I had also been overweight for the majority of my life. There were insecurities deep inside that only few people knew of, but I never let my weight stop me from living life to the fullest.
Basically, I was fat and happy.
I don’t mean to sound so nonchalant, but everyone of these pictures brought back good, happy memories. I was truly happy and I know it’s because of a couple major things I’m blessed with:
- First of all, salvation. I gave my life to Jesus at an early age and he has helped me over the years to love myself for who I am and not cow to what this world says I need to be.
- I was raised in a family with parents who always loved me for who I was.
- I have a husband of almost 18 years who has been faithful to love me in every way no matter what my size was.
- I’m blessed with friends who are real and loving, not people who are only my friends because I make them look better or can do something for them.
I share this with you, because when I showed those pictures to my kids they were a little stunned. They said they never knew I got so big and don’t remember me like that. We kind of laughed, sat in awe and then I pointed out the fact that I was smiling in every picture and shared with them the same reasons I’ve just shared with you.
While I knew deep inside I did not like how I looked when I was overweight, and I really never felt hopeful I’d be able to lose weight, my joy did not come from my weight and I wanted my kids to know that.
They need to know that they can find joy and happiness in life being who they are. They need to know that their relationships should not be dependent on their appearance. They need to know that we strive for better health because it’s what’s best for us, not because we need to please others.
My prayer is that I will always focus enough on my exercise and eating habits to stay in a healthy weight range, but that I will not let the scale replace the things that truly make me happy.