I don’t know if you’ve ever had a weight problem or not, but if you haven’t, get on your knees and thank God. Seriously. Because it is a life-long struggle that many of us battle with little to no sympathy. Because we made ourselves that way. Right?
I was a SKINNY kid. A SKINNY teenager. And then I developed Ulcerative Colitis, got pregnant and gained 60 lbs., went through a hella divorce, got married and happy and by the time I was 30 I had yo-yoed my weight so much, I didn’t know what to do anymore. So what did I do? I went back to college and increased my stress load by 600% and by the time I graduated, the last 10 years had caught up with me in a major way.
Ok, so I’ll get back on track after the first of the year 2014. Then my grandfather died. Then I experienced the most stressful ending of a school year with Reagan EVER. Then I decided to run for public office. And on and on and on….
Stress breeds bad habits in me. Bad eating and OVEReating have become such a part of me that when I look at the Weight Watchers app and see the points values for the things I’ve been stuffing in my face…..it’s rather hard to register.
The thing is, it’s become apparent to me that I will always be surrounded by stress. Either stress I created or simply the daily stresses of life. The question then becomes whether or not those stresses will define me as a person – physically, mentally, spiritually, and emotionally.
It’s my 4th day on Weight Watchers. I’ve only craved bad food about 4,963 times in the last 96 hours. But I’m not craving it because I’m hungry – I’m craving it because I’m stressed. I’m in a perpetual state of stress because of several different factors and I desperately want some ice cream or a cheeseburger or chocolate to make me feel better.
I’ve always known I was a stress eater. I just don’t think I realized how dependent I had become on food until recently. I’m learning to ask myself questions when I start wanting food:
“Why do you want this?”
“Are you hungry?”
“Is there a better option?”
“Is this worth the regret you will feel later?”
“Will eating what you want right now actually solve the problem you are obsessing over?”
It’s hard to face the fact that you are really and truly addicted to something. To admit that something is controlling you. I’ve had terrible headaches in the afternoons for the last 2 days and I’m positive that it’s withdrawals. Not a fun place to be. But an awakening.
When I joined WW last weekend, I was simply doing it because I needed to find some method of weight loss that I could do. But as the days have gone on and I’ve really had some time to self-reflect, the weight loss is becoming a very back-seat priority.
You see, I don’t like the idea that anything has control over me except me. I don’t like constantly feeling exhausted or sick or fatigued. I don’t like worrying about what my doctor will say to me at my next appointment. I don’t like for my life insurance agent to basically tell me I better get in better shape or my premiums are going to be high. I don’t like where I am. The weight is just a piece of this puzzle I’m trying to solve.
So why did I write this? I’m not really sure except to say that being overweight is difficult, getting in better shape is hard, and to tell you to be considerate of those who are fighting the battle. Because it IS a battle. The hardest kind…..the kind with yourself. And it never goes away.