Why I (ultimately) decided to lose weight
Tuesday, February 02, 2021
My reason for starting my weightloss journey originated in the search for acceptance of others. I have always had a theory that there is self esteem and there is “other” esteem. Other esteem occurs when I look to others for acceptance and validation. Self esteem takes place when I look inside myself to find approval and peace. My weightloss has always mirrored my perception of where my validation comes from.
I never had a problem with weight gain until I had my first child. After my son’s birth I fought to lose the added weight and never got it completely off. Then I had my second child and the weight continued to compile. I started my weight loss journey because the reaction I got from the outside world changed. With great effort I lost most of the weight but life went on and I was comfortable with my world. I fell into a pattern of complacency. My weight surreptitiously grew while my future unfolded filled with kids and responsibilities. I would look in the mirror and see a reflection that I did not like. People who knew me for years would tip-toe around the subject of my weight gain and those who recently met me saw me as heavy. I tried unsuccessfully to lose the weight several times. Small victories led me right back to complacency and the weight would come back exponentially. I fought with how the world saw me and the reflection I saw in the eyes of others caused me to slip into a subtle depression and to a feeling of worthlessness. My esteem was caught up in the world views around me and there was no quick fix and hence no hope.
My children grew up and the weight remained. There was, however, one pervasive thought that had seeded in my head. I never saw myself as heavy. Of course when I looked in the mirror or saw a picture of myself, I could see the weight that had accumulated, BUT I knew that the weight did not define me. I was skinny underneath. Those around me saw my weight and judged me on it. When I allowed myself to be influenced by their perception I gave my feeling of self worth away and was left with only other esteem of which I had no control of. It wasn’t until I truly took my power back and started looking to myself for validation that I was able to start my true weight loss journey.
My reason for starting my weightloss journey originated in the search for acceptance of others. My reason for sticking with the process of losing weight comes from somewhere much deeper. It comes from my knowing that I am worthy even when I have the extra weight. I am worthy of love and health and friendships. I am worthy of achieving a skinner me and I owe myself that respect. I do not need to look outwardly to find acceptance. When I do it is short lived. "Other esteem" changes like the weather. Some days it is sunny and beautiful but on the days that are cold a foreboding, insecurities seep back in and I easily give up on myself. My self esteem endures even through the difficult times. My knowing that the weight does not define me helps me to rise above it and then the journey becomes joyful as I experience the wins regardless of anyone else's perceptions or judgement.
So the question of WHY I have started is a simple one. I have started because I am worthy and my self esteem originates from within. I deserve to be my very best self and find joy in the process.