The point where you love your body

0607111853I believe that women in particular can have a difficult time with loving their bodies, because I know I have personally had a very hard time with it since I first got a ‘body.’ As a little girl I was nothing but legs and height, and all I cared about was playing outside for as long as I could and doing boyish things with my brother. Puberty hit me at a really young age and I recall being thrown off by what was happening to me. My long, lean build was gone and I ballooned out in about every direction.

Of course, like any woman out there I was teased quite a bit and bullied a lot. The boys started noticing any girls who had ‘blossomed’ and so I covered myself in baggy clothes and hid it as best as I could. The worst teasing, unfortunately, came from my family because suddenly my metabolism was turned against me. I couldn’t just eat anything like I did as a kid and have it not show. My family thought they were helping me by pointing out my weight daily, but year after year of this on a constant basis deteriorated my perception of myself. I avoided mirrors like the plague and got used to hearing from my mother in particular that if I lost weight I’d be perfect. 

319919_1975714788888_1123630225_31682279_2101631656_nTurns out later that I was diagnosed with Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome and this makes it difficult to lose weight, easy to gain, and your hormones are completely out of balance. Even when I was diagnosed and put on medication it didn’t help my weight, and I may have gained while I was on my medication. The symptoms it helped clear was cystic acne and it regulated my period so I wouldn’t go six months at a time without one.

To this day I always react to people bullying someone about their weight, even if the bully is that person. I make sure to say any good thing that crosses my mind, you look good today, etc. but I try to keep weight out of it. Lately I’ve been told that I look like I lost weight… and I know I haven’t. I just don’t need to lose any more especially since I am very content at how I am right now. I have never been as happy as I am about my body, especially because it just feels so much stronger. I had a set goal weight I wanted to go for at first, yet, I don’t care as much if I am at that exact weight or a few pounds above it because my body just feels good. It even shows in my career that I can give deeper massages that may have exhausted me if I did several in a row before and I don’t feel tired at all.

0907111815Through my journey I’ve had I have realized that finding love and appreciation for your body, and who you are, of course begins and ends within yourself. The kind of teasing and bullying I’ve been through for my weight is something I’d never wish upon any other woman or especially a child. Yet, I know as women we have to fight against not only what people say about how we look, or the media says, but also when we end up turning against ourselves as well.  To this day I don’t like it when people I don’t know tease me incessantly thinking they are funny and I will tell them every time to stop it. 

I am not one for resolutions or goals but I did have at least one this year that I will continue to love my body, treat it good, and maintain all the hard work I’ve done. I want to continue doing one of my passions I never thought I would have which is cooking 6-7 days out of the week. I’ve always been one to want to change little parts of me, my thighs, my stomach, and I’m learning to be content with what I’ve got. It’s a process continuing to love your body, especially when it seems like everyone is telling you that you need to fix any flaws that you have. I realize now my flaws are what make me… me, and that they can be the most beautiful thing about a person.

When clothes are your lifelong enemy

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAYou know those people you meet in life where their parents (mother) end up buying them all their clothes? If you haven’t met someone like that then meet me, I’ve been my mothers real life dress up doll for years. Why? Because, for one, it saved me money, but I think why it happened is because I passionately hate clothes and everything to do with clothes shopping.

Now, I’m on my own in a new place and things have changed. Plus, I have lost around 50 pounds since I moved, so I have the need to buy clothes. My clothes were so baggy on my body, especially jeans, that they were literally hanging off me. And I’m starting to learn something about myself and my life long battle against clothes shopping…

It may have been caused by years of shopping with my mother and bending to the clothes she liked and wanted to get. It doesn’t help your shopping experience when you are told if only you lost so much weight you would look okay. My lost weight happened because I made it happen, on my terms, and to help with my polycystic ovarian syndrome. It’s also nice to have yourself be your own stylist with what you like and want.

skinnyvsnotskinnyEven when I see her recently and I shopped once to get a couple of shirts and she would say how one would, “make me look skinny,” while another wouldn’t. I’ve heard so many times I can’t count how my stomach doesn’t work, the shirt isn’t baggy enough to hide it, or how my legs, my butt, just don’t look good. “If only you lost weight,” then I would be better.

So, when I finally set off on my own to get clothes that would fit my body better that hatred diminished as I tried on clothes that truly fit me. I didn’t get extra large clothes to hide my stomach, a size above what I needed, because I didn’t have that extra voice telling me to. And, though getting a hold on my style and how clothes look on my body is good, the money does add up. Luckily, my husband supports me with it and always encourages me that I am pretty to him no matter the weight, size, or how I feel. When I start feeling guilty about the money spent he just says clothes are a necessity, and he helps me feel better about it.

My discovery of an alliance with clothes is a surprise to me, and also such a new discovery. I’m developing my sense of style, a wardrobe that truly is me, while I try to find peace with myself. I am lucky enough to have a husband who reassures me every day and I know he has always loved my body.

Looking in the mirror and liking what I see

I have always been tough on myself, on my body, on everything to do with myself. My self-image has been poor since I hit puberty and my family came down on me for being too fat, too heavy, and dubbing my thighs: ‘thunder thighs.’ Really, what they couldn’t deal with was me ballooning out with curves, hips, boobs, butt, all of it seemingly at once. I was always such a lanky little girl, the tallest in my class, with legs that stretched out for forever but with no meat on my bones and I truly was a little tall stick.

Puberty hits, I’m the first one to get everything in my class and my family comes down hard on me for my weight. The only time I lose a ton of weight, almost 50 lbs, was when I was hit with severe depression and had an abusive boyfriend who told me I was worthless and ugly every day. I lost what little self-confidence I had and didn’t eat hardly anything at all for months.

During that time my mother kept saying how great I looked with the weight lost. I remember trying on clothes and she was just so excited that I had lost this weight because as she told me over and over, “I’d look so much prettier if I just lost 30 pounds.” I remember trying on the clothes without feeling any happiness for losing the weight, and for changing my body. My body only lost that weight because I had no hunger for food, and absolutely no hunger for life. My mother kept telling me how much better I looked with the weight lost even though she knew it was only because I was literally starving myself.

Flash forward now, married, in a whole new place, away from family, and currently unemployed. At first I exercised to keep my self sane, but then I started to change myself slowly. I began tracking what I ate, watching what I ate, but not starving myself. I began eating more fruits than I’ve had in my entire life, and having apples, bananas, even trying out strawberries and raspberries.  I’m now cooking chicken and volunteering to cook dinner for me and my husband. I’m trying to make myself stronger, better, and to get down to a ‘normal’ weight on my terms. ‘Normal’ weight for me is supposedly around 169 pounds, and currently I’m just about five pounds away from that. I’m able to swim consistently, and work out consistently like I never was able to when I was with my mom. My dinner doesn’t consist of fast food every day like it was when me and my mom were together.

I’m hoping to get back into the horses and exercising, and that certainly is a great way to workout, but also I know it makes me happy. Even though those horses are so smart and going to kill me next time I bring treats, so I’ve learned not to bring carrots or apples if you don’t want to be run over.

I was trying on clothes tonight, trying on different clothes to see what would work for Vegas and what would work for back home. And, I’m trying on these clothes that would never fit before, and if I tried to slip them on I wouldn’t be able to smooth them over my sides. The clothes look great, my curves look even more amazing than I remember them being before. My belly has been tamed by sit ups and ab exercises I’ve been doing. I just looked in the mirror with one backless, strapless shirt I’d never be able to wear before without feeling self-conscious and I stared at the mirror.

I couldn’t help but to smile and strike a little mini-flex with my arms. I’m seeing my body change and for the first time its on my terms and I’m doing it my way. I just want to keep this up because in that moment I felt pretty proud of myself and… it felt kinda good.

My Unintended Starvation Plan

Maybe I'm going to look like this eventually...

So, the past few days as you can tell from the lack of blog posts have been pretty damn awful and it’s only today where I think I may be on the mend (hopefully) but I thought this on Sunday and then got terribly worse yesterday. Friday and Saturday were basically days where I was incapacitated. I was so bad on Friday that they called around for a massage therapist to cover my shift the next day and called me off. I was really bad yesterday so they have me coming in later for some of my clients who pre-booked with me, but gave me the morning/afternoon to sleep in.

I also have entered into an unintended starvation plan because of being so sick. I haven’t been hungry, I haven’t felt like eating, and mainly have been eating soup for the past few days. I can’t taste anything, even with my nose cleared, and have been forcing myself to eat but with little success.

Mainly I just want to sleep, and yesterday I sounded better than my worst day but my breathing was off, I felt very exhausted, and my head was killing me. Every time I go through something traumatic in my life, like clockwork, I get severely sick at the same time. And, I’m not talking about your every day cold where you get a stuffy nose and slight cough, but you take some DayQuil and it’s all good. No, what I go through just destroys me, and I know it’s because of that huge thing in my life and the stress I’m in just makes my body a perfect breeding ground for that perfect storm.

I know I need to let go of the stress, and I know I need to try to not control everything, but the man will be moving next week and I need to move out of our apartment and back in with my folks. I’m really upset, and I think I’m finally coming to terms that this is happening and I’ve been trying to pack and then I got hit with this cold from hell, or whatever it is. I rarely let him take care of me, yet I haven’t had a choice lately and he’s taken the best care of me the past few days.

I’m not used to depending upon anyone, and I’ve come to depend on him and I’m just going to miss him so much while we’re separated.  I’ve made my decision that this is what is going to happen, he will move down there and I will follow him after the wedding, but it just doesn’t make it any easier to go through.

‘Skinny’ is a dirty word?

This or That? I'll take That.

I want it. The girls at work want it, my managers wants it, my clients want to have it. Acquire it, become it, transform themselves into it. They eat kosher hotdogs with no bun, self-made salads at home, don’t even eat a lunch but a little bit of crackers and hummus and that’s good. They talk about how stressed they are, then say on the plus side that since they are stressed in may make them lose a few pounds. So, of course, this is a definite plus. I look at them, and they are beautiful. Certain body parts they have I envy, or like my friend I met with on Sunday, she is like gorgeous. But, totally denies it.

I do too. I want that. I’ve wanted that since I went from a tiny little girl, tall, leggy, skinny, and I hit puberty and became… this. Which means I got curves, ballooned out, was the first to get a chest in my class, and went from around 100 pounds, or less, to 190 or so. But, luckily, I got the height to cover it and the extra stuff gets placed in places I don’t mind (like the chest, my butt) but I still have places I do mind, which is say, my thighs. 

I’ve always been told to lose weight. I’ve always been told since I changed from that tall little lanky girl to what I am now what a transformation it was. My mother was a big pusher for it, my father, my brother, everyone. I felt I wasn’t right, if I just lost those pounds maybe I’d acquire perfection. Maybe I’d come across the guy of my dreams then, he’d take a look at me, see how skinny I was and how I shed what I was, and just say, “Wow.”

But, it didn’t happen like that. He had lost a ton of weight, I hadn’t, he looked at me and said “Wow” because I’m guessing my personality just shined. I was feeling super sassy with a chocolate martini in my hand and the moment I looked at him I knew I wanted him. Yet, I also knew I didn’t want to date. So, I was mean to him, and he didn’t give up. Now, he’s having a struggle with the weight issue and wanting it off, and it being difficult. I don’t know how to help him with it, besides saying I love him, and I’m here for him. To tell you the truth I’m not even sure what to do about my obsession with weight that I try to quench.

It’s just never-ending that even when I lose weight, and I do good, and I’ve made a change in my life for the better to watch what I eat and be more aware… it’s not enough. I’ve lost about 15-20 pounds depending on the day and have kept it off for months and months. Sometimes I want to push myself past that. There was a moment in my life where I had lost 40-50 pounds, and was at the skinniest I had been since when I was that lanky little girl. Even with all that weight lost (mainly by not eating) I was still only a size 10-12.

Losing all that weight was because I was incredibly depressed, for many reasons: death, not being able to get anywhere in my life, an abusive boyfriend, which was the first one I ever had too, on top of so many other things. I didn’t have the will to eat. It was kind of rough, I was a shell of the person who I knew I was.

I love my girls at work, and they are beautiful. Some of them are just drop dead gorgeous, and totally skinny. But, even the skinny ones want to be even more skinny. They think they are fat. And I tell them, you are so pretty, and what are you saying you are fat/need to lose weight/aren’t right right now? And they kind of blow me off when I tell them they are just as pretty as can be.

Of course, in the same sense, like when I was told I was pretty yesterday after I had make-up put on me I basically told them to bug off. I even said that without make-up, no one says anything, never compliments me, nothing, but with it on? You guys all flock to me and think I’m just the cat’s meow. One gal even said I was ‘sassier’ with make-up on. I don’t even know how that happens, except probably I felt a little annoyed that I never get any attention when I’m ‘normal’ Sarah being told I’m pretty, only when I’m ‘made-up’ Sarah. Plus, I’m too lazy to put on make-up, I’m just too lazy, and it’s not me.

It’s an up-hill battle. I’ve even tried working out every day of the week for 2-3 hours at once and I lost like… 3-5 lbs. Ridiculous! But, once I changed how I eat, what I eat, and became a little more careful, and stopped exercising like a mad woman, I lost the 15 lbs. I just don’t understand how this works sometimes, and I’m like my girls at work. The grass is always greener on the size smaller pants.

Wii Fit is my Frenemy

So, it probably goes without saying for many people who use the Wii Fit that there is a love/hate relationship with it. I just love to hate that little white stand. It just looks cute virtually as it dances, sleeps, and waves at you with its little white stub arm. It also has a cute voice, like that helps you feel better when it tells you that you’re overweight. But, with the knowledge of the Wii Fit and my BMI being automatically calculated with my weight, I have lost weight.  And, I want to keep it off too.

But, unfortunately, I’m afraid I’ve gained weight back. I’ve been eating more than I used to and what I’ve forced myself to get used to. Like I’ve said before, I’ve decided not to diet, yet I want to and I’ve kept my calorie intact around 1,000 calories a day. I’m dreading when I get back on the thing and my little Mii balloons out and the thing asks me why I gained weight.

Yes, it asks you why you gained weight. You have options of, “I don’t know / Ate too much / I had indigestion / I ate late, ect” that you can pick from the list. The last time I weighed myself I had to pick a reason why because I gained about 2 lbs, which really I wish I had the option of “Screw off Wii” as my answer to its question.

And, I suck at the games where it figures out your age. I’m generally around 48 years old when I first started out and I’m still like an old lady. So, not only does it tell me I’m overweight, it also says I’m much older than what I am. One of these days that damn thing is going out the window, because it is a moody little piece of technology.