January 20, 2019

Introduction – Find Your Why

I am writing this journal because it’s a weird thing I’m about to try to do. Really weird.

This is my last-ditch diet. My last-ditch effort to get to a body size that I’m if not happy with, at least, I don’t want to hate it.

I don’t hate myself. I have a healthy sense of my own worth, talents, and even beauty. I’ve done things that I am proud of, hard things.

But yet, here it is. Decades of dieting, learning, following plans, and no matter what I do I can’t stick to a diet.

And I’ve tried every diet. More about that later, I guess. I just don’t want to go through right now at this moment.

So. Today. I’m giving up eating. (sort of)

Dramatic! But I’m sure it won’t last. Don’t worry. I’ll be fine. And five pounds heavier in a week or so.

Maybe more about why I’m at rock bottom because I’m at the top weight of my life.

By any measure I’m obese. That’s tough to write. Obese. But at 5-3 and 190 pounds, my BMI is 33. Which sits smack in the middle of the obese range. The only direction I have to go is to EXTREMELY obese. Neat. And by the way, you’re fine, at whatever size. I want whoever is reading that to get that. I’m not here to judge your weight. I’m here to be honest about mine. And if after trying this, trying like hell, it doesn’t change any number, then I have to do serious work in another direction and stop looking at any number. And then what? A heart attack? Yeah, neat.

This weight I’m at was achieved after doing every single diet. This is a diary, a confession. So now I’m going to swear. Every fucking diet. And every fucking exercise.

I think about weight all the time. That’s really awful to admit. The fact that it plays in my head all the time, what I weigh and how I might change it, it feels shallow, superficial, delusional even.

I know this might seem counter-intuitive to what I just wrote. But I am an optimist. My optimism is so strong that I’ve been able to ignore my diet failures and start again and again and again with a positive attitude. So maybe I shouldn’t call it optimism. Maybe it sounds more like the definition of crazy.

These are my options. Do nothing. And keep pushing my weight up. Every year another five or ten pounds until they put me on diabetes medication like my dad. Do nothing and my rising blood pressure causes me to have a heart attack or a stroke. 

Weight is not an indication of health. So stop right now if you think you can judge a person’s health by their size. I know healthy people at all sizes. But FOR ME this current weight is not healthy. My blood pressure is in the heart attack range. I begged my doctor to let me wait on medication. To let me try, with diet, to get it lower. My cholesterol numbers? I’m too scared to check. But they’re high. So while some people can be perfectly healthy at this weight, I cannot. I have to do something or the doctors will. 

Or option number two, try to solve this, again.

I want to solve it. Is that optimism or delusion? 

Every health, fitness, eating plan asks you to come up with your why. What’s your why? I sort of hate that right now. I watched a doctor talk about weight loss and healthy eating and he said you need a “legacy reason.” Blech. Okay? Just shut up.

If your goal is to look good in a bikini you’re an asshole. You can’t say that because we all look good in bikinis. And I am in total support of that, wear a bathing suit and go swimming at the beach and fuck all the people who don’t like it. I do that. And I got it. Bikini hotness t would never be my goal. Who gives a flying fuck unless you’re paid to model or something ridiculous.

So back to the why. I need to pick the socially acceptable “why.” The armchair experts tell you that if you want to live to see your children another day you won’t eat that cookie. MMMkay.

Here are the socially acceptable “whys” of weight loss. My children need me. My parents need me. I want to do fun things! But guess what, here’s the truth about all kids. They don’t care if you are in a bikini or a moomoo. 

And in truth, my “why” isn’t for my kids. It never was. They don’t give two shits about how I look and I’m saying that because they love me. It is as it should be with my kids and my husband. They’re supportive, loving, and in no way responsible for me or my journey. They want me happy and healthy but could care less if that’s 190 or 130. 

I suppose I could pick a “why” that includes living to see future grandchildren. At some nebulous date in the future, I’ll need to be fifty-pounds lighter so I can bake cookies with them and not eat them.

So we’re back here, why?

Here’s another socially acceptable “why.” Death.  I am risking early death if my blood pressure stays here. This one does make sense to me. So here it is, my “why” includes trying to stave off diabetes, breast cancer, heart attack, stroke. Yeah, not a fan.

Two doctors have now cautioned me about my weight. They’ve told me that yes, I have to lose. Neither could give me a way to do it. Neat.

Here’s another “why.” I don’t like the feel of this weight. People think of fat as flabby or like some Santa Clause style happy bowl full of jelly on your middle. My weight isn’t like that. It’s tight around my bones and joints. My fat acts like a blood pressure cuff pumped to the max. It isn’t loose at all. It’s constricting. I can’t turn around well or get up off the floor after playing with mhy dog because fat has a tight grip around my body. I’m packed in meat. 

Oh, wait. I’m supposed to love myself. That didn’t sound too loving. Sorry. I am meaty and delicious. 

Here comes the superficial “why.” Here comes the part that I wish wasn’t true about myself. I don’t like the look of my fat. In my mind, I’m sharp and edgy. The real me, the me I was, even thirty pounds ago, is getting lost every time the needle on the scale notches another point up. People see the roundness and don’t listen to anything sharp I might have to say. That’s on me. I know that. But there it is. 

I want to look better. Less old. Less round. Less red-faced. This, by the way, is not socially acceptable in the “why” department. I’m not allowed to want to look a certain way because I’m older and I’m supposed to be evolved past caring about how I look. Unless how I look involves resembling Mrs. Claus. 

Before I go further. I don’t judge others by weight, never have, I have beautiful friends at all weights and their weight never enters into my joy in being their friends. They are beautiful, no change needed. But for me, when I look at me, there it is. I want to look different. It is so unevolved of me, right? Because as a “why” wanting to look cuter in Old Navy Rock Star jeans is really gross. If I ever get on Oprah I’ll be sure to leave that part out. 

Officially, my Super Soul Sunday answer is that my”why” is for SURE for everyone else. I want to be able to save the world and volunteer and adopt shelter animals and live to be a great great grandmother!  But I can’t at this weight. I understand that I’m too old to want to fit into a bikini. I’m so much more evolved than that. Of course, I am.

Are you listening universe? I am about to try intermittent fasting to lose some weight, twenty pounds would be great, fifty would be, uh, not going to even think about it. Universe, what you need to know is that my why is super altruistic and unselfish so can you just let me lose fifty pounds? Thanks. Neat.

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