Numbers are hard to talk about because numbers don’t lie. It’s easy to talk about ideas and dreams and goals because those things don’t *have* to be real; if they never come to fruition, there are means to justify why. But numbers… they are concrete.
When it comes to losing weight, numbers mean a lot. And it’s not simply the number of pounds – calories eaten, weights lifted, miles ran, sizes worn, inches lost, and so on. Simply relying on one doesn’t tell the whole story. Together they are a collection of where you were and where you are going; what you achieved. Yes, you can have a goal to run 13.1 miles, but there are so many more miles run in between. Yes, you can lost 10 pounds, but you might have gained muscle and lost a certain number of inches or dress sizes.
It’s a nice idea to say that numbers don’t matter, but at times when your goal is to take one more step, lose one more pound, or anything concrete to feel accomplished and to feel like what you’re doing is actually worth it, it is important to have something that reflects the challenges and that feels like a reward.
And I am a numbers person. I am judged by my numbers in my job – making cost, meeting schedule, analyses resulting in impactful ways, etc. So is it any wonder that numbers flow over into my non-work / everyday life?
So this is where / when I need to be honest to myself. Unfortunately I haven’t tracked a lot of the numbers listed above over the years, but I have tracked my weight and while weight isn’t reflective of the whole, it is something tangible at this point in my process.
Today I weigh:
- 21 pounds more than I did the day I was married.
- 2 pounds more than I did the day I gave birth to Anna.
- 40 pounds more than I did the day I went back to work after giving birth to Anna.
- 12 pounds less than my heaviest weight ever, which was when I was pregnant with Raven.
- 80 pounds more than the day I graduated from high school.
- 53 pounds more than the day I graduated from college.
- 33 pounds more than what my driver’s license says.
I don’t have to tell you what that number is. When I reach my goals, perhaps you’ll be able to back figure it out if that is your desire. By then I won’t care. Today I care, today it hurts, and today it speaks to me as to what it is I need to do.
There is the truth. The black and gray and white of this situation.
- In preparing for this blog post, I read some fascinating articles on “vanity sizing” and how sizes have changed over the years. It was interesting and a bit bothersome to see that today’s size 00 is a size 8 from 1950. I truly hope that size 00 girls don’t see that and try to figure out how to make themselves even smaller.
- Even though we as women are still very mean to ourselves, we’re a whole lot nicer than we were “back then”. Shaming isn’t healthy, no matter what.
I’m pretty sure that calling girls “chubbies” didn’t help them and could have easily been onset for eating disorders or other issues.
- I have to be careful around my girls because I don’t want them to see a mom who is sad about herself/her appearance, I don’t want them to see a mom who shames herself. I really don’t know how or where my girls learned the word “fat” already, and I sure as heck hope it wasn’t from me, but my daughter already knows that I am “fat” – and she is six.
- There’s a fine balance between becoming healthy and fit and being obsessed with being healthy and fit. Keeping that in mind on this journey is all important.
- I’m really glad women don’t really wear corsets anymore. Though Spanx and the like are fairly popular, so maybe we do and we just call them something different. Yep, I think that’s it. (They CAN make clothes look nicer on a body – “can”, being the operative word.)
- It is okay and necessary to feel good about yourself as a person along the way. Shaming oneself into submission, so to speak, doesn’t work very well. It never has for me in the past and won’t now.
So. For now. And a few thoughts with respect that. A very hard post to write; a harder one to publish. Hopefully one someday I can look back on and be proud of.