Wednesday, May 13, 2009

Is it worth it?

Today I attended a friend's 35-year company anniversary party. I saw a lot of people I've worked with throughout the years but haven't seen for a very long time. Some of them knew me when I was skinny (123) and some knew me when I was fat (240), but every single one of them said almost the same thing...Oh my God! You're so skinny! You look fantastic! I probably heard that at least 30 times today. It was a huge morale boost. Just what I needed.

First of all, I AM NOT SKINNY. Far from it, I'm about 20 pounds from my perfect weight (135). My weight this morning was 156.6, up a tiny bit, so definitely not skinny. On the other hand, I really wouldn't call myself fat either.

What was interesting was they had a slide show displaying on one wall, showing pictures of people that had worked with my friend over the years. There were several pictures of me, from about 15 years ago, during one of my normal weight phases. I heard people say, Diana, there you are! I looked up at the screen and I'm serious, I didn't recognize myself at first. My hair was different, I use to wear it shorter and curly and not as blond, and I was about 15 years younger. I have a thing about having my picture taken, I've always hated it. For the obvious reason, I always thought I was fat and ugly.

As I looked at myself on the screen, I thought, why did I think I was so fat back then? I probably weighed about 130. I remember the shirt, it was a size small and I was wearing size 6 jeans. Funny, I can tell you my weight and what size I was wearing at just about any point in my life. Then I thought, and why on earth did I think I was so ugly? The woman, about 38 years old, looking down at me was not ugly, nor was she fat. She was kind of cute and definitely looked healthy. I remembered back then I did a high-impact, step aerobics class four times a week and was a vegetarian. Honestly, I looked pretty good.

It made me start thinking, in another fifteen years when I'm 68 am I going to look back at my pictures from today and think the same thing about myself--why did I think I was so fat and ugly back then?

I have terrible self-esteem issues that I've been trying to work through. It's really hard after a lifetime of negative self-talk-- I'm fat--I'm ugly--I'm stupid-- to turn it off. The voices in my head sometimes take over and I can't seem to shut them up. I know this is why I've had so many weight problems over the years. In a way, I guess I didn't think I was worthy of losing the weight and keeping it off. I wasn't worthy of being happy.

Something has changed in me this time around. I can't quite put my finger on it, but this time, I do think I'm worthy of being happy. Maybe because I'm older and wiser, maybe because I know there isn't a lot of time left to waste being fat and unhappy. At 53 my days are numbered. I'm on the downside of life, past middle age, entering into the last few decades on this earth.

Whatever age you are right now, you are worthy of being happy. Don't waste years of your life like I did, bouncing up and down by 50 or 100 pounds at a time, always unhappy with yourself. Always being critical, saying negative things in your head about how you look. Feeling worthless because of your weight and your inability to lose the weight and keep it off. I know it's hard to lose weight, damn hard, and even harder to keep it off. Some days even now I think well screw it. I don't want to exercise and I'm sick to death of counting Points. Then I remember myself from February 2008. That sad 240-pound woman was broken, in body and in spirit.

Is it worth it? Yes.


WannaBe Healthy said...

Diana, thank you for such an inspirational posting. I enjoyed reading it. I can certainly can identify with the way you felt about yourself.

Ida said...

No matter how old (or young) a person is, there is no time to be wasted in self-hate. None of us knows how long we have on this earth. For any one of us this could be our last day, so we must make the most of it.

Caitlin said...

Thank you for this post. It was amazing to read, and was very inspirational.

big_mummy said...

jumping right in, since you visited me. thanks for that, i replied for you over there because im a dork... nevermind!!

love your blog layout, such cute colours.

and just look at you!! HAWT!! i salute you :)

MizFit said...

echoing the others with what an inspiring post.
in your shoes I think Id write the words YOU LOOK FANTASTIC down and post em on my mirror :)

Lia said...

Thanks!! It is so true what you write and I feel it! I appreciate those words because they really ring true with me and so many others. It, once again, helps with the perspective that we all lose at points.

Fatinah said...

you have given me a lot to think about! great post

antgirl said...

Great post, Diana! Someone's been dipping in the profound pond. I am so glad to hear you say that you think you're worth it. You most definitely are, and, as the others said, you look fantastic.

~ugly girl with a beautiful heart~ said...

I'm only 25. I remember being in junior high and high school and always looking in the mirror and saying the same thing...fat ugly cow. I hated myself. I still do it now. However, I look at my Senior pics and say...why did I do that to myself? I wasn't so bad. Geez...the things we do to ourselves.