Friday, August 3, 2012

weekly weigh-in & recap: body image blues

the weigh-in this week was bittersweet.

normal people would jump for joy and be elated by a "congratulations on hitting your goal weight" message. normal people would see the number on the scale and skip across the bathroom in their thinner-than-ever birthday suit. normal people would be happy by their progress and happy for finally reaching the accomplishment they have worked so hard for.

i am not normal.

and before you get mad at the words i've chosen, i'm sure i'm generalizing above by saying "normal" people. but in all seriousness, i think most people would be happy to have acheived their goal weight.

and i was not. 

i weighed myself a total of 10 times after seeing the first weigh in of 144.9 pounds. i couldn't believe the numbers on the scale, questioning again if the damn thing was broken. i looked at my body in the mirror, doubting that the reflection accurately portrayed 144.9 pounds. my body looks like it weighs so much more. 

i had this idealistic picture of what i would look like at 145 pounds; a seemingly perfect body, making my confidence and happiness with myself perfect, too.

and here i am, 144.9 pounds, and i feel none of that. i see none of that.

i have hit the point of realizing there is much more to being happy with your body than hitting a goal number on the scale. i've ignored this idea for a very long time, pushing it away in stubbornness. i thought if i hit my goal weight, i could prove that theory wrong.

turns out, the only thing i'm proving wrong is myself.

if you already lack the ability to be happy with yourself, it doesn't matter what that number says, you will never be happy. you will never appreciate how hard you've worked or how hard your body has worked. you can't appreciate the compliments or believe them. and you can't compliment or say good things about yourself.

this is my struggle. in the most logical sense (when my brain allows me to see the logic), my issue has never truly been about the number on the scale, even though my weight will always be part of my battle. my real struggle is body image (body dysmorphic disorder) and not ever once being able to see myself as good enough, or see my worth outside of how i look.

the weigh in on thursday was a perfect example of how my perception of "actual self" versus "ideal self" is skewed. and the difference between the two caused me to immediately log into weight watchers and decrease my goal weight by another 10 pounds. there's a part of me that feels sad inside, for feeling like i have to keep lowering the weight to reach some idealistic state. but the other part of me knows that i am 25.8% body fat, sees the excess fat on my body and recognizes that there is more weight that can be lost.

as much as i can try and eat healthier, work out safer, decrease my stress and do things to take care of me, none of them will ever help me more than being able to overcome and get through this body image disorder. i've overcome mountains by not purging in over a year, but i realize this week that i have miles to go to get to a place where i truly am healthy in all that i do, and not just bits and pieces of it. i'm not sure how i'm going to get there, or what its going to take, but i'm hopeful that my new found determination to get healthy will spill over into the part of me that knows i need to improve my body image and start loving me for who i am if i ever want to truly be happy.

- alicia


  1. I know exactly how this can feel. Sometimes when I look in the mirror I somehow still think I weigh 240 lbs. I have lowered my goal weight several times and am working on my most recent goal now. I'm not sure exactly what I'm looking for and keep telling myself I'll know it when I see it.

    Your very last paragraph could have easily been written by me. Kudos on all that you've accomplished. We can both do this!

  2. Maybe we will know it when we see it? Or maybe we need help to recognize it's there. I'm not sure yet, but I'm glad to know I'm not alone in feeling this way! Congrats on all you've accomplished, too! I totally believe we're doing things in a healthy way that will allow us to reach our goals.


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