I swear, there is nothing more in this life that people will remind you of on a daily basis than your weight. Lemme tell you, we as a society are OBSESSED with weight. For some strange reason, we feel that we NEED to let people know when their bodies have changed. Because you know, they themselves don’t know.
I remember a few years ago, I caught a bad case of the Dengue Fever and lost a significant amount of weight. One co-worker came up to me and said “listen, whatever you’re doing, you’ve reached your goal, it’s time to stop”. Another one said “girl, when I was your size, in order to gain some weight, I would eat an entire cake over the course of a couple days”. I can laugh at these things now, but it never occurred to any of these people that this was not my own doing. I wasn’t deathly thin because I wanted to be.
Moving on a little. After lots of work and healthy eating, I reached my ideal weight of 127 pounds and life was nice. Then I moved (four times in three years), couldn’t find a gym I cared to join, picked up running and dropped it, met my husband, was no longer an on-a-tight-budget grad student, ate pretty much how and what I felt like, and as a result I gained ten (10) pounds.
Well let me tell you! No one let me forget it. Ok that’s an exaggeration, but you get the gist of what I’m saying. In the beginning, this really, REALLY bothered me. I wanted to punch everyone in the face who made a comment about my body.
One woman said “listen, just don’t get too fat”, another said “You know, when you just came to work here, you were so TINY!”. People, I hope you’re understanding what I’m saying. I gained 10 pounds, which means I weighed 137 pounds. That is in no means overweight but everyone kept making me feel that way. Even family members. It was hurtful. Very painful I would say.
I would get SO angry because I could not figure out for the life of me, what good could possibly come from statements and conversations like these. Really, what do you hope to achieve? If you’re not telling me out of sheer concern for my well being, then what is your point? What is your objective?
I have never in my life, made a comment to someone about their weight. You never know what is going on in someone’s life, you never know the cause. These things can cause hurt, it affects self esteem and confidence, it makes people feel worse about themselves in a world that already screams you’re not good enough.
What I’ve realized though, is that you can’t control what people do. Try as you might, you can only control what you do and who you are. Once upon a time I was a fitness buff. I exercised seven times a week. Did spin classes, aerobics, yoga, pilates, weight training and on and on, every single day. I ate only steamed veggies and aspired to be a body builder (yes, me) and I had the body that living that type of life gives. But guess what? There was always something that still needed fixing. Whether it was toner legs, a flatter stomach, a smaller waist, there was always something. Even though I had the body of my dreams. I was never satisfied. Life is just weird like that.
Fast forward to now. I am truly happy in the skin I’m in. Yes I get a little depressed when I need to take 100 pics in a bikini before I can get one good one, yes I hate my choofy arms, yes I continue to not like my chubby cheeks, but I am living the life I want to live. I know what I need to do to get back to 127, if I want to be back at 127. But now my focus is to be healthy, not thin. Being healthy for me means that my mind has to be in tune with my body. Eating well, exercise, meditation and peace of mind is the basis on which I am working on to remain a healthy human being.
People will continue to comment, I will continue to feel a tad insecure as most humans do, but life will go on, and I intend to be happy in it. I love sugar, pasta and a good lifetime movie. That could be a recipe for disaster, but everything in moderation is key.
People’s comments just don’t bother me anymore. Gone are the days where I needed the perfect bikini shot for instagram, now my main concern is where I’d be traveling to next, and building a beautiful life with my new husband.
As we Trinbagonians like to say, take my stupid advice. When you notice something about someone, unless your motive is to be positive or to help, please keep your thoughts to yourself. There is nothing to come from it if what you are saying is not coming from a good place.
We as humans already have so much to deal with. You never know what battle people are fighting. And trust me when I say, that whatever you are noticing about someone, be it weight gain/loss, hair loss and so on, you better believe that they already know about it! THEY KNOW! They don’t need another voice shouting it out at them. Instead, if you must ask something, if you really are concerned, start with a simple how are you? how’s life been treating you?
Before you say something, ask yourself this: is it helpful, is it true, is it relevant? If you get a no to any of these, then don’t say anything.
Have you had any of these experiences? Do share!
….and thanks for stopping by!
P.S ~ 30’s Living, How Does It Feel? & When Friendships Fade
Published: October 16, 2017 9:30 AM