Wednesday, March 7, 2012

Once again - what are you going to do once the fat is gone?

I wrote this post last August....and *I* needed to read it again.  For me.  For more inspiration as I continue on my newfound journey back to health.  Feel free to read again with me if you so desire.

I’ve been reading a bunch of blogs lately and each of them talk about no longer being able to eat their emotions and I keep wondering….what did we all think would happen when the fat was gone? Why didn’t anyone prepare us better for what would happen when all we were left with was our skinny little asses and broken hearts?

I think anyone who enters a weight loss journey thinks in the end – at goal – that we’ll live in Care Bear Land and life will be paradise. It’s what we dream of. Skipping from cloud to cloud – in our brand new skinny jeans.

The thing is though – that even when the fat is gone – life remains.

Shit happens. People die. Bills pile up. Jobs are lost. In-laws piss you off. Kids get sick and even puke. Explosive Man still blows up. It storms and your roof leaks. You want to kill your boss. You still hate your ex. A size 2 still doesn’t fit past your knee. Toilets still have to be cleaned.

The world just keeps turning.

The only thing that changes is that when the fat is gone – if you look in the mirror and there are still tears streaming down your face - you are forced to admit that fat is no longer the reason.

You are unhappy – in spite of the fat. Without the fat.

My God – no one planned on that happening, did they? No one told anyone that the whole mother-effing life you lead could be turned upside down because you shed a layer of skin.

But it can be.

Before you lost the fat? Well, you could cry. Be in a bad mood. Huff and puff. Stay at home with your bottle of excuses. Not participate. Be grouchy. Be pissed and bitter. Hate how you looked. Be mad at the world. Live in oversized clothes. Never care about your appearance. Never smile. Go to bed early. And get up late.

All because fat gave you the right to those feelings. Not a single person questioned your attitude. They’d do the same if they were in your shoes right?

Fat gave you a reason – to be unhappy. And by God – you used it.

Now? You’re losing fat. Maybe even done losing and now maintaining.

So when you cry now – stomp your feet – want to kick small bunnies – scream at every human being and have road rage before you ever even set foot in a car – you can no longer say:

It’s because I can’t move because I’m too big.
It’s because I didn’t sleep because I’m too big to sleep well so I’m exhausted.
It is because I hate the way I look.
It’s because my blood pressure is too high.
It’s because of all the meds I take.
It's because I can't breathe.
It’s because I can’t work out because of my size.
It’s because nothing fits me.
It’s because I’m discriminated against because of my fat.
It’s because people point at me when I’m in public.
It’s because I’m embarrassed of how I look.

And the list goes on.

You can’t say those things anymore. Instead – if someone asked you what was wrong – now that you’ve lost weight – when everything should be paradise – you might actually have to face your inner demons and say:

I’m not happy with my career.
I’m angry about my childhood.
I’m not in love with my partner anymore.
I am not being my authentic self.
I haven’t let go of some of the things in my past.
I’m carrying guilt, shame and hurt.
I cannot forgive someone for something they did years ago.

And the list goes on.

You can bet your new skinny ass it’s easier when someone asks what’s wrong to just be able to say, “I’m fat – that’s what’s wrong.”

The person might give you a lecture on eating and working out – but you never have to dig deeper. You never have to admit that even if the fat were stripped away – you’d still be unhappy. You never have to even go there. Fat does it for you.

Some would even say they were happier when they were heavier. Of course they were. Because back then the only problem they ever admitted they had – was fat. Everything else was perfect. If you had granted them one wish pre-fat – they wouldn’t have changed a single thing in their perfect life – just the fat.

The truth is – fat never did any of us any favors. Most of us thought it was a blanket and a shield and the fact is – it was a straight jacket. Fat made you a kept woman.

Kept angry. Bitter. Sad. Pissed.

It quite possibly kept you settled. Unforgiven. Ashamed.

It kept you everything but your true self.

I’ve always found it so interesting when people say they can’t shove down their emotions with food anymore. I feel like I never did that.

What I did was binge so I could cry and hate myself – for binging. God forbid I didn’t binge and hated myself for the real reason behind the tears.

Or I ate crap for weeks and gained 20 lbs so I could cry and hate myself – for being fat, eating crap, and letting myself go. God forbid I let myself feel some pain and make some changes and face my fears instead of using fat to mask the real reasons behind my pain.

If I binged or was fat – that was enough. THAT was why my heart was aching and my world was cruel. And anyone I told that to would nod their head because that was valid.

My real feelings? The real hurt? Apparently I never thought that was valid enough to warrant taking care of. I was fat. Everything else came in second place after that.

Fix the fat – then maybe I’ll fix the “other stuff”. But if I never allow myself to fix the fat – I never will have to fix the “other stuff”, now will I?

People would almost “expect” me to be a sad, hateful person. I could see it in their eyes, they’d say, “Of course, you’re miserable. Look at you. Who wouldn’t be?”

And their pity was mine. My fat had a voice. A feeling. It was something I could put a label on because I was too scared to label anything else. It was absolutely everything that was wrong in my life…except it wasn’t.

I say this now because I’m realizing I didn’t come this far to slide backwards or get “un”healthy or gain any weight back….simply because I lack the courage and fortitude it takes to keep going forward – and to face things that may break my heart in the road that lies ahead.

As I strip away more and more layers of fat – I uncover shitloads of broken dreams and cracked hearts and old fears and more hurt than I ever understood was under there.

And it scares the living shit out of me.

You better believe that gaining 70 lbs back and telling myself the only thing wrong with me every day is that “I’m fat” would be easier and less painful than continuing on this journey and seeing where it takes me.

I can’t choose that woman anymore. I don’t want to be her now that I see me – today.

She was never authentic or true to what was in her soul. She was too caught up in fat.

I am strong enough now to conquer the demons I’ve taught myself to shove down for years.

I don’t owe fat anything. None of us do.

I’m 100% certain that nothing I face going forward can be as scary and heartbreaking as anything I’ve faced in the past – because I’m stronger now than I was then.

I’ve got a lot less fat weighing me down….and I’m going to keep it that way.

Are you?


Fit Mom said...

I recently started following you and I am very glad you reposted this. It is an excellent blog entry!

Dawnya said...

I remember this blog!!

Cat said...

Read it the first time, re-read today. Thank you it's so true and possibly even more today at nearly 1 year than it was then at only 5 months in to my journey.

I so heart you!

Rachel said...

I love this!!! (and you!!)

Chris said...

"My fat had a voice."

This line literally jumped off the screen at me. I'm just starting on this banded road, but already am thinking about this wonderful post. I have put all of the monthly support group meetings on my calendar for the next year, but am wondering if I should pursue individual counseling, too. My fat has a very loud voice, too, you see.

Thanks for posting this, Drazil!

Tina @ Blazin' Bandit Girl said...

Such a good, thought provoking post! I am glad you shared (reshared). Many things to think about. I think I am going to make a pre-skinny, "what's behind the fat" list. That way, I can face and work on those things at the same time. Who knows, maybe losing weight will come more naturally if I take that route.

Steph said...

You are the end all be all in my book...That is all. Enough said, cause you said it all! :)

Julia said...

This is so very true. Blaming whatever goes wrong on being fat, and then going on to overeat so one stays that way. And then finding out, after getting rid of some or all of that extra weight, that shit still happens. What I keep reminding myself of on such days is that the fat was really handicapping me when trying to solve those other problems- the "can´t do anything about this cuz I´m fat"-line was sometimes even true. Besides, I don´t give up believing that the total amount of s..t going on in a person´s life is not a constant, so, reducing my problems one by one can work. Yes, being thinner means losing part of my elephant´s thick hide, but the energy I don´t waste any more on feeling lousy because of my fat, and what happens because I´m fat, is now free for solving other problems. Besides, if we can successfully lose weight, that´s proof of plenty of willpower and strength of character- which, when applied to those other problems, may be more than sufficient to solve them, won´t it?

MandaPanda said...

This post spoke to me the first time I read it and it continues to be true today. Thanks for reposting!

Frickin' Fabulous at 40 said...

Like I said on your other post, now that the fat is off I'm working just as hard if not harder to keep it off. There is no end, just more of the same. Finally tackling the feat that was supposed to be insurmountable gives me the confidence to approach new challenges and adventures.

spunkysuzi said...

How very true!

Beth Ann said...

Good one and worth repeating!

greenlightlady said...

This makes is not really about food or's about our feelings - who we are!
~ Wendy