The Moving Finger writes; and, having writ,
Moves on: nor all your Piety nor Wit
Shall lure it back to cancel half a Line,
Nor all your Tears wash out a Word of it
-- Omar Khayyam
I have nattered on and on about my weight many times in the history of this blog. Long story short - I was once a lollipop and rapidly evolved into something halfway between a pear and an apple once I turned 19 thanks to PCOS and depression. It's your standard, garden variety weight gain drama.
I have spent the past eleven years wringing my hands and being miserable over the matter, without, for the most part, actually trying to do something about it. My body paranoia has prevented me from going to social functions, as I can't bear the thought of getting dressed in clothes that will reveal rolls of fat spilling over the top of each skirt or pair of trousers. I worry that people will look at me and think how glad they are that they do not look like this. I don't eat in front of people other than at restaurants, and if I am in a situation in which I can't avoid eating in front of others, I'll be sure to eat very little and very healthily.
I avoid being in photographs as if I'm Amish. My daughter is two and I suspect you can only find photographic evidence of me a handful of times. This, above all, makes me the most sad. I have wasted two years of her life because I have let myself be at a point that I am so ashamed of. If anything were to happen to me, she would have virtually no record of my appearance. Blogs are plastered with photos of happy mothers and their children, but I know that will not be me, not yet anyway. I have attempted such photos, but the resulting images are enough to drive me to heavy doses of Nyquil and endless days of extreme self-loathing.
I'm sure some of you are reading this and thinking I should just get over it. I think this all the time, and The Dude has been singing that song for a decade. This post is just to say that the enlightenment has begun. I have reached a saturation point of disgust with my body, and for whatever reason, I know now that this can't continue. I think about all of this wasted time - over ten years of miserableness just because I can't automatically have the body I want.
Much of my weight-focused melodrama has been over the fact that I am so angry that I have to cope with this bounty given to me by PCOS. I am a healthy eater, I don't drink, I don't smoke, I walk everywhere, and I lug a 23lb toddler up and down four flights of stairs every day. Somehow, this does not result in any kind of weight loss, so the thighs stay fat, the face stays moonish, and the boobs still threaten to take over my entire body with their repulsive voluptuousness.
Most women do not have such issues. These women decide they want to lose a few pounds so they cut out some refined sugar. Two weeks later, et voila - five pounds lighter! In this decade (I must keep reminding myself how very out of hand this has all gotten), DECADE of dithering I have let this issue overpower my will to do anything about my weight. Instead of focusing on what I could do for me to improve my life, I've worried about why other people have it so good. What is the point in that? I did the same when I was infertile - I obsessed over the notion that most women did not have problems conceiving, so why did I have such difficulty? Why me and not them? As we all know, there is no answer to this. It just is. The difference here is that I can do something about being heavier than desired, and I have control over the outcome.
I am not the woman who has a baby and is lower than pre-pregnancy weight within a month post-partum. I am not the woman who walks 20 minutes twice a week and loses weight. I'm the one who fails to shift baby weight, still occasionally wearing a pair of maternity jeans more than two years after the fact because the elasticated waist is just so damn giving. I'm the one who will need to run at least 30 minutes four times a week just to break even. It is what it is. Why it has taken me so long to realise this, I don't know.
This is the dawn of a new Pru. I cling to my Couch to 5K like it's my new religion, and I like referring to it as The Programme so as to sound like a level 4 thetan. To prove my dedication, I got up before 7am this morning to go for a run. I, lover of sleep, shunner of early rises, got up at the ass crack of dawn to put one leg in front of the other at a fast pace. I lift weights and do ab exercises every other day, and I make sure to walk at every opportunity. I have cut out refined sugar during the week, though I allow myself the odd sweet thing on weekends. I have even cut down on my coffee to two cups a day, which is tantamount to self-flagellation.
My new perspective has extended into my personal and professional life too. I have made a conscious decision to be more efficient and focused, as I am totally lazy and easily distracted by shiny things. So far it's working, and my productivity has increased greatly. I'm becoming a wifely clone of The Dude, who might possibly be the most organised and productive person ever. Help.
So why am I telling you this? I don't really know. I suppose I'm just proud of myself for making a change after all of this time and knowing that it isn't a temporary measure. I've been happier within the last month of the new me than I have been in years, and I know that is something worth holding on to. I want to be a good role model for P, and most superficially (and embarrassingly), I want her to be proud of me and not so ashamed that she pretends her hot 16 year old cousin is her Mum.
I was going to put a photo up of P and me that my Mom somehow managed to snap on holiday. The rolls are out there for all to see, as are the monster tits and the gigantic moonpie face. I thought, even at this early stage in Project New Pru, that I was ready to put it up for all to see so as to wave goodbye to that person in the most public manner I could think of. I've spent the last 10 minutes occasionally clicking back to the folder to look at it, and I'm not there yet. Perhaps when I have a new picture of me, smiling and holding my daughter without the spectre of "FAT FAT FAT" looming ominously over my head, I will. For the first time ever, I can actually envision that this may be.