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Remembering being thin

Friday, October 02, 2020

I read a member blog today that made me think of the time when I was newly thin.

It was 2001 and it felt like all the stars aligned for me to be able to drop weight consistently. In about a year I had lost 98 lbs. I remember how great it was to shop the clearance rack for clothing because the size Smalls are always what they have too much of ... and now I could wear them.

I remember what it was like to have room in my chair for my purse to sit beside me instead of wondering if a chair would hold me or if I would fit between the arms (especially embarrassing in public).

I remember how I transformed my love of eating into a love of preparing good food and how much better everthing tasted. I remember lower grocery bills in spite of healthy food being more expensive than junk food. Portions matter. Who knew?

But I also remember how people treated me differently. How they suddenly noticed me. (I've been here all along). How people who never spoke to me before felt like starting a conversation with thin me (Why now?). How strangers in the elevator at work thought it was appropriate to say something about my weight loss (I don't know you. What makes you think it's okay for you to comment on my body? It's not). I remember how even my pastor pissed me off. When greeting my husband and I after the service, he congratulated me on my weight loss and then turned to hubs and said, "you know, your wife is really a beautiful woman."

I was infuriated. I wanted to shout, "I am the same person! You can't call me beautiful now if you didn't think I was beautiful then."

It hurt me. It made me recognize that being fat is a place to hide and how, at times, I still like being invisible.

I don't look forward to getting comments about my weight loss (after I get some weight-loss that is), but I'm not willing to sabotage myself to spite rude people. I don't want to give them that much power over me.

This time when the comments come, I hope to handle it differently.

20 years have passed. Things have begun to change. There are people out there that understand boundaries. But again ... that is outside my control. I can only change me.

There is another common time when people say really dumb things and that is after someone experiences a loss. Platitudes abound. They are not helpful and can be hurtful. But when I went through some major losses in my life, I chose to hear those stupid things differently.

I chose to recognize that most people just don't know what to say. And that saying stupid stuff was part of the human condition. I was also guilty of doing it at times. I decided that instead of the words they were saying, I would try to hear the sentiment behind them. In almost every case, what they were trying to say was, "I know you are hurting, and I care about you." That's it. I stopped being angry when people spoke in platitudes. Most to the time, I could answer with a simple, "thank you," without feeling I had been untrue to myself.

Could I do something like this with people who make comments out-of turn with regard to weight loss? I don't know. I have some time to figure it out. But I am going to get there again - to the place where weight loss is noticiable. I will do it for me. For my health and for my family who depends on me to stay healthy for as long as I can.

Do you ever feel uncomfortable when people comment on you weight loss? How do you handle it?
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Member Comments About This Blog Post
    I've been there....at goal around the time you were. I too lost 100 lbs to get there. People would ask, "Are you sick." Ummm....no. I was busting my butt to make the progress that was evident. 20 yrs later a more mature me will welcome the comments. I'll wear the badge proudly and no matter what the comment, I think a Thank you, I've worked hard for this will be sufficient. And I'll also say I responded very differently from one person to the next. It depended who was commenting, what was said, and the sincerity of their inquiry. I did help another girl too....she did phenomenally when she followed a plan similar to mine. That was super rewarding!

    63 days ago
    A very insightful blog. Some people are rude and should mind their own business.
    Some, especially in times of loss, just don't know what to say..

    You are very wise in you observations

    63 days ago
    I don't want to hear comments either. It is Ok if my husband says something about me working hard or something like that but other people definitely nope.
    63 days ago
    No. I don't like it when people comment about my weight GAIN. I appreciate when people compliment my weight loss. It encourages me to keep going & it reinforces the fact that my hard work is paying off. 🙏 ☮ 🌺 We can do it 💃😊⚘
    63 days ago
    I also hate the comments of my current weight- "You're beautiful for a big girl!" Ummmm no. You better rephrase that to "YOU'RE BEAUTIFUL. PERIOD. FULL STOP." I am not beautiful for a big girl. I am gorgeous because I am ME at any size.
    63 days ago
    It can be weird for compliments on my weightloss. But it really depends on who the comment comes from-- my relationship to that person. If we're not very close friends/coworkers, not my family/hubby, or Spark People commun, then I don't want
    63 days ago
    Love love love your blog. Honesty and a willingness to forgive.

    I like being invisible myself at times. People do treat you differently when you look a certain way. I have no idea why. Like they are proud to be near me when I look good or the opposite when I don't .
    It is a good question.
    You feel the same inside, know matter what weight.

    Dawn French is a famous comedian in Britain. She was for the longest time, a heavy actress that could be compared to our John Baluchi or Chris Farley. She was known for being heavy and used it in her skits . She went passed a certain line with her weight and looked like she might be very unhealthy and possibly have a heart attack. Then, She lost a LOT of weight recently and the media just jumped all over it. She said, "You know, I like being thin right now, but I liked being heavy too. Who knows , I might just get heavy again." I loved that the media was thrown off like that! She basically told them , she is happy at any weight and in every phase of her life and it didn't really matter what her waist line was and no business of anyone but her own.' It didn't matter and the media should not have even made it a headline. She was literally confused by all the attention the media put on her weight loss and mentioned it in several interviews and honestly you could see her annoyance with the attention of it.

    We should be thankful that the media isn't watch our waistlines. It is personal and private as it should be

    63 days ago

    Comment edited on: 10/2/2020 1:53:51 PM
    Patience and love
    63 days ago
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