I have spent quite some time struggling with my body, my weight, my figure etc. And you might say this is not an uncommon thing, and you would be right. But there are some things I have discovered in this process that I think would be worth sharing.
I think my ‘obsession’ (because for a time I think it was indeed an obsession) started with my mother’s well meant concern for my well being, i.e. my figure. I always like to say my mom has a reversed food addiction. She is always fussing over what to eat, when to eat, how much to eat, for as long as I can remember. I don’t know why she does it, but is sure has influenced me. I have been feeling overweight since about my 2nd year into high school (in my school system, that means I was about 13). And looking at pictures of me from back then I realize I had absolutely nothing to worry about! I might have been a bit more than slim, but I was certainly never overweight. It was just the, again well meant, comments from my mother which led me to feeling that way. Dieting never really worked, sports were not my thing (and I have this knee condition that’s not really helping..) so I slowly started gaining weight anyway. I have the luck of having a lot of self confidence and a strong personality, so the ‘problem’ with my weight didn’t affect my general confidence much. It was, however, always that ‘problem’ just lurking beneath the surface.
Now, it didn’t really get to the point that I was actually a bit overweight until I went to university about a year and a half ago. Now that I am, in fact, a bit overweight and it actually shows, I realize how completely wrong I was for thinking I was too fat all those years before! I started talking about this with my sister and she gave me some really good advice. Her idea of food is that food should be FUN. And I completely agree. The only problem is that implementing this idea into my life turned out really well in the first week, but not so much later on. I’m often just too lazy to cook, to make something fun out of my food. I found out I mostly regard food as a necessity, as bothersome, as something that keeps tricking me into gaining more weight. So, I thought, for me the solution is not changing my diet.
Because the problem is not the food itself, the problem is the negative relationship between my body and the food. What I’ve realized is that you can’t start losing weight if you don’t accept yourself and love yourself wíth the weight. What I mean is, I didn’t think I was sexy, or pretty, with my body looking the way it looks now. And trying to lose weight from a point of denial of yourself or rejection of yourself will, in my opinion, not work out the way you want it to. Because just losing the weight will not solve that problem. You have to be able to love yourself, and think of yourself as desirable, even with the weight.
From the moment I realized I was actually a bit overweight now, I vowed to always keep looking at myself in the mirror. To not deny my own body but make peace with it. And it helped. It was a slow process, at times probably even an unconscious one, but lately I’ve realized that it has worked. Now, when I look in the mirror, I see a sexy full-bodied girl with gorgeous curves, a pretty face and a lot to offer!
And from that point of loving your body in any way, shape or form, you can start losing weight if you want to, and making your food FUN. But you won’t be doing it just for the weight any more. It’ll be a by-product of taking good and loving care of yourself, choosing the food that you know is right for you. It will be the by-product of feeling energized, cleansed and free. Eating healthier won’t just be a case of less calories, but of making choices made fun by your acceptance, love and happiness for yourself. And if from time to time you don’t succeed in eating well or losing weight, it won’t be as bad, because you like the way you look anyway. Food isn’t the devil, it’s your friend, if you let it.