My impossible goal this year is to lose 100lbs. I am going to write a recap at the end of each month to share the good, the bad, and the ugly. This is month #2. (If you missed the recap for month #1, you can check it out here). February started strong, then it seemed to fall apart. I do know for sure that everything happened exactly as it needed to, because otherwise I might not have this to share. On the last day of the month, while I was FREAKING OUT for losing only 2 pounds, it hit me. The flood gates opened, and I let it wash over me. This is what came up. There is a big difference between thinking “I have to lose weight” and “I want to lose weight”. “I have to lose weight” comes from a place of dislike. If we peeled back all of the layers it probably stems from some version of “I’m not good enough”. I don’t think I HAVE to lose weight, but I do WANT to lose weight. So, I asked myself the question; "why do I want to lose weight?". There are typically three answers to this question, in some form or another:
To be healthy
To look good
To feel good
Today, I call bullshit on all of the above. Keep in mind that I have lost 100 pounds before, so I’ve been around this block. I’m going to break down each answer. To be healthy: I am healthy. In fact, I’m healthier now than I was after I lost 100 pounds the first time. I was diagnosed with breast cancer just weeks after I hit that major milestone. I was a stressed-out, exhausted workaholic who didn’t take good care of herself. That’s not me anymore, so this answer doesn’t fly. To look good: I like the way I look now. If I’m real honest and take other people’s opinions out of the equation, and take all the shame associated with being overweight and put it off to the side, it’s a non-issue. I’m beautiful just the way I am. That is truth. To feel good: LOL. I feel better now than I have in years. I feel good physically, but especially mentally (see above). This is the wrong answer. With the typical answers off the table, I can dig down to get to the root. Why do I want to lose weight? The answer comes clearly. It’s because I’m tired of carrying it around. My weight has been with me for a long time. Not just the physical aspect of weight, but all the stories and beliefs that go along with it. My weight is Amy. It’s become who I am, it’s part of my identity. It’s been my armor, my protection. It’s the kids who made fun of me. It’s the adults who made nasty comments about my body throughout my life. It’s the people who told me I’d be so pretty if I lost a few pounds. It’s me in the fitting room as a young girl feeling shame because I couldn’t wear certain things. It’s being told I weigh too much. It’s safety from predators who didn’t have my permission. It’s feeling bad for not fitting in, for being different, for being weird. It’s comfort from being too loud, too wild, too big, and too much. It’s a safe space. It’s my guard. It’s my defense. It’s my excuse. It’s helping me stay small. It’s helping me hide. It has been my best friend, and my biggest burden. We are both holding on for life, only by a thread, and we are both very tired. It has been a dynamic relationship. It has served me for a very long time. I understand why it has been here, and why it is still here. I’m ready to let it go. It’s time to remove my armor. It’s time to get to know Amy, and who I am without this layer. It’s time to show up. With all of this pouring from my soul, I decided to write a letter to my weight. I’m going to share it here. Every time I think I can’t possibly get more vulnerable, something deeper pops up. Here it goes. Dear weight, Thank you for being there. Thank you for supporting me. I know you love me. I know you were only trying to take care of me, protect me, and keep me safe. I appreciate everything you have done over the years. I love you for being with me, and offering a safe space to hide. Thank you for being my excuse from having to step out of my comfort zone and live life fully. Thank you for being my story; because of you we are going to help tons of women. We’ll do it together, but I don’t need you with me anymore. I don’t need you to stay. I don’t want you to stay. I’m tired, and I know you are too. It’s time to put down your armor. You can rest, I got this. Thank you. I love you. Goodbye. It may be only 2 pounds that I lost on the scale, but let me be clear that this right here is a lifetime of mental weight. As I'm writing, it hits me again, and again, and again. This journey is so much more than weight loss. It is about breaking the chains. It's about unwinding the years of bullshit, and untangling the stories that have kept me stuck. This is February. This was big. I can’t wait to see what happens next. If this resonates, and if you are struggling to find peace with your body, your weight, or yourself, I hope you will reach out. This is the work I’m doing for myself, and with my clients. This is how we change diet culture, and stand in our power. I would love to talk and see how coaching can help to set you free. Let’s do this! xo, Amy
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