I have found a new full-time job. It's not an easy one, but it's one that millions of Americans find themselves in several times a year. I happened upon this full-time job in December, when ten pounds crept up like gracious burglar, unloading on me in about a week. Since then I have been trying to get rid of this unwanted weight, and back to where my pants don't feel shrink wrapped to my thighs.
I'm not going to mention any numbers. Not from the scale or on the interior of my jeans. Because what I have to say has nothing to do with size. It has everything to do with how I feel, and how culture has made it impossible for anyone to feel okay when they are not IDEAL. And I will go on record right now to say that if skinny jeans are part of that IDEAL, I want 2005 back.
I used to work in healthcare, and despite what all the doctors said every day, I knew that carrying extra weight has always been just a state of being. It doesn't make you subhuman or on death's door. But that's not what people want you to believe. That's certainly not what I've been lead to believe as I pull on my once favorite pants. I think I liked muffin-tops better when they were a bit on Seinfeld.
Why am I feeling so terrible about my shirts that fit more snug than they used to, and these pants? I can slowly, not all at once, replace my wardrobe. I loved those pants and those shirts. But they are just clothes. My ZORG Industries t-shirt is just a t-shirt, and while amusing, does it really mean that much to me that I end up spending two hours a day burning more-than-enough calories, just so that the number on the scale might nudge a small-bit downward?
Our bodies are meant to be machines, vessels through which we live our lives, and express our feelings. I hug with my arms, no matter whether they look like Madonna's or Hodor's. I write, a lot, and my ideas come from my brain and are typed out by my fingers, which are all part of my body. I play with makeup, I do my hair. I love being a woman and expressing that. Why should I be so hung up by what's on the scale?
My body is meant to be loved, no matter whether I am in these jeans or those jeans. Whether I am wearing this size shirt or that one. I am not defined by a number, I am defined by what I say, and the interactions I have with people. Those interactions are qualitative, not quantitative. What I need to concentrate on, is having good qualitative interactions with everyone around me, leave the counting to the scale.
Maybe I'll have a good qualitative interaction over dinner. Chicken wrapped in bacon, anyone?