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Tuesday, October 18, 2011

There I am the baby of the family. See the chubby one? I think I was about 7 years old in this picture. I know I wasn't born fat because I have baby pictures that show me as a normal weight baby. but from whatever age that children start having memories of their body image mine has always been fat. Sometimes when I would lose a bit of weight, like when I was a sophomore in high school, I would lose enough weight to feel just chubby. But inside, deep in my head, I was fat.

Now along with the poor body image and inferiority complex, I also grew up thinking that there were many things that I could not do. I couldn't find cute clothes to wear, I would never have a boyfriend that I choose, I could never be a cheerleader, and I was never good at any physical activities. (obviously I am giving you the short version of the story here)

The point of this blog is to let every parent who has an overweight child, or every person who grew up as an overweight child - to stop now - stop that negative thinking. Stop passing this on to your children. Stop carrying this burden around.
Yesterday at age 60, I ran my first 5K. And it was one of the first times in my life that I felt that I had accomplished something physical that I had set out to do and finish. The elation that I felt was beyond joy. As I thought about this afterwards I thought to myself, why did it take all these years for me to push down these false barriers that I put up in my mind? The only thing that I can think of is that this is the programming - the mind game- the poor self image - that I had believed ever since I was a child of about 4 years old. It is also what society believed and over the years society never taught me that it wasn't true.


Just a side note about my run. I like to run on grass. It just feels better on my legs and knees. So when I got to the football practice field last night, the local high school football team was still practicing. So we took a walk for awhile waiting for their practice to finish. When we got back to the field these young guys were just finishing up running around the field. Many of them were making noises like they were going to vomit, coughing, and all sorts of complaining sounds. I thought to myself, gosh, I wonder how many times they ran around the field?

After I finished my run and was walking home, I passed one of the young guys and his coach coming out of the school. I couldn't help myself, I had to ask him, how many times did you run around that field just now at the end of practice? The young guy says 4 times. The coach said, NOT ENOUGH!!. I just smiled and said, I lost count at 17 times around. Both of them stopped, looked at me and said, that is awesome!! Way to go!!! The coach even added fantastic. Keep it up. Gosh, I felt so validated. Honestly, it felt like I was a young teenage girl again finally getting recognition for my hard work.
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  • no profile photo CD10937514
    Another one that I love! Your right we our poisoning ourselves and our children with our negative thoughts. I would like to add a side note to parents with overweight children; take a good hard look at what you are feeding them because until that child reaches about 16 you are responsible for the groceries coming in to the house and all of the fast food runs. Consider this before you make mean and hurtful remarks that could do serious damage to your child's self esteem and your relationship with your child permanently.
    3294 days ago
  • no profile photo CD10163029
    emoticon emoticon emoticon profoundly touching.

    emoticon hold onto that, deep down inside your heart

    because, really, emoticon

    (i know that this was the same for me, I wish words could express what I'm feeling, so just let me say, thank you... I do hope we can break this cycle for all those to come)
    3299 days ago
    I sure can relate! Love this, it is so true, thank you! I am 40, and feeling like I have wasted my whole life letting my weight hold me back. I am working really hard to put that to an end! Way to go on running your first 5K!! How wonderful those young men and coach were supporting you and noticing your hard work!

    3299 days ago
  • MSV2UU
    I love your Blog!!! My daughter, who is 17, recently lost 20lbs (she had a stomach virus and didn't have an appetite). When she went in for her check up I thought she looked a little thin. She is 5ft 2in and she weighs 99lbs. Her doctor said her weight was perfect. I thought I should put a few more pounds on her!!( My daughter is 17 and she is mentally impaired so I control her food intake). I want to make sure my daughter doesn't end up overweight like me!!!

    I wasn't overweight until after I had my daughter. Time to make changes for the both of us!!
    3299 days ago
  • COLEE82
    Really enjoyed your blog! I'm sitting here in tears, as I can relate so completely to the childhood you describe. It's unfortunate that so many children grow up feeling this way! Congrats on your accomplishment!

    3299 days ago

    Great Blog Joann!

    I am happy you have finally been able to stomp those negative, self-defeating voices of your child hood that told you you weren't good enough.

    Damn rights you are good enough, deserving enough, and capable enough to do anything you set your mind too.

    I share a similar story... but I was never the 'fat' girl. Just somehow grew up thinking I was less than others. Less worthy, less capable, less sports orientated. I never knew that my parents 'weren't' simply raised to instill those sort of ethics and values into me, at a young age onwards. That they weren't able to tell that I needed just a little more encouragement.

    Both my sister and I have grown up very insecure with low self-esteem because of this, and many other reasons.

    Don't get me wrong... I had and have great parents... they just thought a little differently.

    But, I will tell you... my girls are fed positive encouragement until they are sick of it... hahaha!

    Anywho... your blog!

    Way to go! Fantastic! And your sense of pride is well deserved!

    3299 days ago

    Comment edited on: 10/18/2011 2:48:30 PM
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