Fat Girl – A Confession

I have been MIA lately, and for lots of reasons.  We are so busy… so busy with life, so busy weaning (that went so well, I can’t believe it!), so busy making career/life decisions, so busy getting out on dates every weekend, so busy trying to purge the house of un-needed things (I am a FB swap-group selling goddess (this is the only thing I’ve ever been a goddess of) and have made over $2,000 so far and still have over $1,000 worth of things to sell), so busy just trying to keep up.  Because of our “case of the busy’s,” I have moved more into a maintenance mode with fitness which is nice, but also scary for me.

Weaning and going on a new birth control pill caused a little correction in my weight.  A 3-5 pound correction.  I knew this was coming, but I honestly thought that if I kept working out, it wouldn’t really happen.  But it did.  Turns out, my younger son was burning a lot more of my calories than we ever imagined and he was, all by himself, a very effective little cardio machine!  After two weeks of a steady climb, my body is back to burning fat and knowing what to do, so I’ve relaxed.

But I was tense.  So very tense.

This all leads me to something that is very sad and hard for me to admit.  No matter how thin I get, no matter how fit and strong I get, no matter how good I look in my clothes… I will always view myself as a fat girl.  I weigh less now than I did my freshman year of HIGH SCHOOL, but I still look in the mirror and think, “careful or you’ll get fat.”  I check my face daily for possible visible gain.  Isn’t that pathetic?  I have always had body image issues and it appears that those are going to continue no matter how thin I get, and that makes me a little sad.

I skipped my workout today.  It took everything in me to skip it because, well, I don’t want to get fat.  I know that one skipped workout isn’t going to make me fat, and I know I ate pretty well knowing that I may not have time to workout, but I still battle those little demons in my head that say, “don’t slip.  Don’t get fat.  I bet you’ll weigh a pound more tomorrow.”  My husband is on the road and I called him to chat so that I would not go run on the treadmill.  I think it’s healthy to skip it – I don’t have to run 6 miles every freaking day.  But what I think, and what I really think don’t agree with one another.  My shins hurt, I plan to hit up an intense 10:20 class tomorrow morning and hopefully run at nap time, and I still felt the urge to just go run out of fear of getting fat.

This is pathetic.  But it is my reality.

I was raised by a woman who was pencil-thin her entire life until she quit smoking (I honestly believe she was anorexic on top of smoking – she even admits “preferring the anorexic look”) and a man whose family was so obsessed with weight, that I’d have mini-panic attacks before heading down to visit them if I’d gained a pound since the last time I saw them.  I loved my grandma, but that woman could sense any weight gain or loss of 0.5 pounds or more in a New York minute.  The first topic of conversation was always about how you looked, and you always hoped you looked good enough (I’m rolling my eyes writing that).  It’s no wonder I have body image issues.  My dad always told me I was “built like a house” while I was growing up and my mom liked to go on and on about how thin she used to be before she quit smoking.  That same woman was quick to tell us girls when to take it easy on the food because, “you came back from your freshman year a very big girl” (and enter my first real game of starving myself to get back to where I was before college).  Nothing was ever good enough, except, of course, when my older sister was really starving herself and looked how my mom and everyone else wanted her to look (frail).  Jesus.

So here I am, hovering at 140 pounds at 5’7 with a super healthy BMI and a body fat percentage of 21.5% and abs that show without flexing them.  But I still feel fat.  I still can’t believe I wear a size 6/8 jeans and have a 27.5 inch waist – I swore to a sales lady at a boutique two weeks ago that I couldn’t go down a size because, “I am no 27” (but alas, I am).  My first reaction looking in the mirror is still, “you look fatter than yesterday” before relenting and thinking, “no, you’re looking good.”  Hell, I took this picture of myself on date night two weeks ago because I couldn’t believe it was me staring back at me from the mirror, in those 27 jeans and medium top that was too big in the shoulders (but they didn’t have a small).

Fat Girl

I took the picture to remind myself that these actions, these thoughts are pathetic.  That no matter how I see myself, others see me this way – thin, strong, healthy, fit.  I’m trying so hard to not think of myself as a fat girl, but it’s not working.  I don’t know if I’ll ever get there.  That makes me sad.  And it makes me grateful that I don’t have daughters to screw up with these issues.  In my branch of the family tree, it stops here.