Monday, October 14, 2013

Pride and Penance

Though I can talk for hours about how barre3 has benefitted me so far, I think the best win has been getting my self-worth back. At some point in my weight gain spiral 7 years ago, I decided I deserved to get fat. I decided that I couldn't be thin. I decided I was incapable of self control. What's more, I held myself against prejudices I had about fat people. When I got to a certain weight, I started taking privileges away from myself. Like, you're too fat. You don't deserve nice shoes. You'll just ruin them with your fatness, Fatty. Fat girls don't get to get manicures. What's the point? A polished sausage still looks like a sausage. At one point, I even took shaving cream away from myself. Yes. I know that sounds totally nuts. I decided my legs were so big that it was wasteful to use nice shaving cream. I told myself that if I ever got back to a normal size, I could earn it back.

I've never told this to anyone.

I just feel like it's important to be transparent and put it all out there on the table.

This is me at my most uncomfortable:

Versus now:

Yes, that was more than 60 pounds ago... but it's not just the weight. It's the life I'm living. It's the way I'm treating myself. The self-talk. The things I believe to be true about myself and what I'm capable of.

I was letting that weight get in the way of everything. The ability to love and be loved. Success at work. My creative outlets. Everything.

Maybe not to the extreme that I was at.... I mean, looking back now I know that I was clinically depressed among other things. I think that all of us get hung up on it though, right? Like, oooh when I lose 10 lbs, I'm going to do ______. I used to say, when I get to my goal weight I'm going to start a new band. A very wise (and grumpy) old man told me a couple of years ago: "What does fat or thin have to do with singing?". I think that was a life changing moment for me. I realized he's exactly right and started the band right away. My weight was only holding me back because I had decided it had to.

Whether it's your weight or another goal, are you paying penance for something? Holding yourself hostage and punishing yourself because you haven't hit a certain measurable milestone? Pride is a weapon.

Knock it off.

You are worth happiness right now. I promise. We all are.

This summer, I bought myself a can of really fancy shaving cream. I didn't even realize I was still punishing myself until I walked down that row in Target and saw a whole world of products I never look at.

I'm also working on the gilt associated with food. There is something inside of me that still panics if I put anything "bad" in my mouth. Like one bite of cheese is going to undo all this work I've done and all the changes I've made. I now believe that I'm incapable of backsliding. I feel worthy of health and well being. I know that in my head, but I still feel the guilt sometimes. Keeping it in check is the key.

Thanks for reading this. I needed to vent and let go of these things. I truly hope that by sharing some of the skeletons deep in the darkness of my past that it has helped you in some way. If you're punishing yourself, even in the smallest of ways, just know that that's how it started for me. One thing, then another thing... that lead me down a path I could not find my way back from for a long time. You might feel like it's insignificant to have a cupcake and then pay for it by running. Just check in with yourself and make sure that your self-talk is respectful and deserving of how amazing and capable you are.

We deserve this. All of the beauty and all of the love. All of the balance. All of the time.


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