Day 152: Weighty Matters

Oh, brother. (Oh, sister, too.)

This topic does feel like a weight — on my shoulders and in my gut.

And the topic is …. weight.  How much we weigh.

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Arrrghhhh!

This is SUCH a loaded topic.

There are so many aspects to it.

Body image.

Self worth.

Health.

Societal messages.

The value of women.

The value of human beings.

Stereotypes and prejudices.

Nutrition.

Food addiction.

Family dynamics.

Advertising.

Food-related politics and policies.

National, cultural, and historical differences in attitudes towards food and weight.

Etc. etc. etc.

(You may want to add to that list, depending upon your experience with this topic.)

Here’s my major point, this morning.  All these different thoughts — small and large — floating around in my brain, are inspired by something so trivial … that feels so huge to me:

I weigh more, today, than I ever have in my life.

And it’s difficult for me to feel as valuable and “okay,” once having noticed that.

Which makes me mad, especially since  I’ve worked with so many people, over the years, about cultivating self-esteem divorced from appearance, including weight.

So I’m taking the first step, right now, of naming my observation, my confusion, and my reactions.

That’s the beginning of my process — of moving forward, wherever that takes me.

Thank you for reading and witnessing (wherever you are, with all this).

Categories: personal growth | Tags: , , , , , , , , , | 5 Comments

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5 thoughts on “Day 152: Weighty Matters

  1. Janis Moulton

    I am right there with you, Ann. Being slim was always, in my mind, a big part of who I was. A few years ago I had a back injury that kept me immobile for about a year, and I gained thirty pounds. After surgery my back is fine, but all of the weight remains. I also weigh more than I have in my life. The weight has “done a real number” on me in countless ways. I feel for you and hope we both get past this issue, one way or another. hugs.

  2. Oh, Janis. I am thinking about how incredibly beautiful you are (now, as always). And I’m feeling so sad for all the time people have spent, feeling bad about themselves, because of how much they weigh, for heaven’s sake. Arrrghh!

  3. This is so sad and dehumanizing. I’m on a dating site and my profile in part says I’m hoping to meet someone who values health and is somewhat active. Subsequently I felt the need to remove “somewhat active” because a woman with whom I was chatting said she was 20-30 lbs. overweight, trying to lose the weight, and was concerned she might not be active or attractive enough for me. I reminded her my profile hadn’t mentioned anything about weight or body type, just health and activity level, and that “somewhat active” covers a pretty wide spectrum. I told her I responded to her ad because it projected the important qualities I’d first mentioned: intelligence, warmth, gentleness, compassion, humor, good communication skills, and similar open-minded, liberal sensibilities. Then I admitted I also responded because I thought she had a pretty face.

    This matter about self-esteem based on physical characteristics made me realize a while ago that overweight women and diminutive men shared something when it came to the dating world: a considerably smaller pool of available potential dates. To me, self-esteem isn’t completely internally-based. What other people think of us or how they react to us can’t help but have some affect on us. For many years, I felt like I was less desirable because of my size. But I feel that living the life I want, being appreciated for my personality, talents and abilities, and noticing women have been attracted to me–some of whom have even been taller or larger than I am–went a long way in helping my self-esteem. Now I rarely if ever think about the women who won’t date me because I’m a little smaller than the average guy. But if that thought should come to mind, I respond with “they’re loss, which I truly believe. We are so much more than what we appear to be!

    • Thanks for the big, thoughtful comment, Rob. And here’s another way we can ease off on ourselves: allow for imperfections in what you write and say!

  4. PS: the word ‘loss’ should have been followed by a closed quotation mark.

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