Wednesday, December 27, 2017

getting triggered by health coach posts

I have not bought a new piece of clothing for months while slowly shedding and discarding old, worn, not fitting or "I'll never fit into it" clothing". Frugality? Depression? Minimalism? Fatalism? Body positivity? Body image issues? Accepting myself for who I am now? Lack of time to shop? Lack of desire to shop and tap into consumerism? Or maybe I am just content with what I have for the stage of life that I am in right now.

I have yet another acquaintance who befriended me on Facebook and is on a health journey. She is trying to lose weight, get healthy, eat healthy, be coached and supported, support others. I see it, I watch it, I observe it. I am happy that she is trying to do something about her weight and body image. But at the same time, I keep thinking how there is so much more to life than abstaining from licking fingers, posting recipes and motivational quotes. There is so much more to it than weight and the size of your dress and the shape that you see in the mirror.

As someone who was always thin while eating whatever I wanted, who never consistently exercised, who never agonized about going a size up, this might be dismissed as a thin girl being dismissive of a not-so-thin girl. But I have gone through five pregnancies and the weight gain that comes with that. I weight right now what I weighed at the end of my first pregnancy. I have gone through nursing and weird body sizes and bras that somehow never fit or looked flattering.  I have gone through going to the store and coming out upset because even if you are fairly thin, your belly is not the same size as your breasts which are a different size than your hips and the clothes designers do not keep that in mind. And I have gone through Hep C treatment when I lost ten pounds in six weeks, was very thin, sick as a dog... Yet through all that I have never hated my body. All these body size and shape fluctuations were a background to the life I was living, the children, homeschooling, outings, trips, classes.

So dear friend on a health journey: I know you mean well. I know that you need support, especially since you want these changes to stick. I know you are excited for what you are seeing in the mirror and on the scale and you want to share the formula of your success with the world. But I am finding myself triggered by your constant pep talk. If I want a cookie, I'll have a freaking cookie and not worry about repercussions to my thighs or the scale. If I want a get-thin-quick secret, it's ribavirin. It kills the appetite (along with a few other useful things in your body).  But come on, beautiful friend. You have lovely kids. Don't they deserve a little bit of Facebook space too? You have so many other things going on in your life. If you don't, there are so many causes to get involved in. There must be more to life than cauliflower crust pizza.

So get rid of your clothes, get cute new ones, say hello to the one you start to love in the mirror, and I will be waiting for when you are ready to have friendship go beyond calories, recipes, and self-negation.

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