Tuesday, June 5, 2012

10 years older, 100 pounds lighter.

As I was going through my old scrapbooking things, I found some photos from an outing we took almost ten years ago to the day, when I was at my highest weight. I know I'm just over 100 pounds smaller now, and am really noticing a lot of changes in terms of how it feels to live within my body at this size. But I never really noticed the visual changes. I guess because it's been so gradual, over such a great length of time, it was too subtle to notice from month to month and year to year. I remembered the outing, but have very little recollection of day to day life at that size, except for the fact that I really wasn't happy and felt very much trapped and limited by mobility problems, health issues, and the logistics of having to function at that size. But all that aside, I was smiling in the photo, and I do remember having a lot of fun that day. Life wasn't unbearable, but it just wasn't anywhere near as good as I knew it could be.

The main difference now, is that I have more mobility and independence. I grew up and into adulthood being extremely independent and that was always something I valued. When I lost that independence, I lost part of what makes me feel like me. Driving the car we owned was impossible back then, and even if I could have squeezed behind the wheel, I could barely walk, so what would I do once I drove where I wanted to go? If we'd have had the money to buy a different car, a motorized wheelchair, and a lift mechanism, maybe it'd have been easier to live with. But as it stood, the only way life would get better was if I was to change my body.

And I did. Without resorting to surgery or deprivatory diets. Without punishing exercise regimes. Without self-loathing or body hatred. I worked out the problems, took steps to correct them, stayed with it, and remained patient. I learned to eat intuitively for health, took control over bad food habits, and found ways to exercise that did not hurt. Over the years, those things have allowed my body to take care of itself, and return to a more natural weight (for me) and a better state of health.

I lost some friends who embrace a die-hard anti-weight loss philosphy. But I gained more of a life in the process. Fair trade in my opinion. We only get one life, sometimes you have to do whatever you feel you have to do to make the best of it.

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