Recently, I went on a girls’ trip with friends. We were all scheduled to meet up in New York City and we had all been messaging each other excitedly about the trip. And, of course, all three of us made sure to mention that, by the way, I’ve gained some weight since I last saw you.
Of course, I love my friends, so to me, they are still beautiful — extra weight or not. I didn’t care that they had gained a few pounds, and I knew that they didn’t care that I had put on a few either. The best type of friends are the ones that you can be yourself with. And, currently, myself has a few extra pounds on it that I’m not necessarily proud of.
We laughed at how we were going to eat with reckless abandon all the yummy foods that the city has to offer, and then while we were together, we gabbed over eggs benedict about how our diets would start back up when we got home.
That’s what we do isn’t it? At least that’s what I do. I feel like I’m constantly in this weird place of wanting to lose weight and get healthier, while also trying to love my body just the way it is.
I envy the confidence I see in other women that don’t seem to cover up their extra curves like I try to, and that embrace and even (gasp!) love their bodies just as they are.
Yet, I fall somewhere in between loving my body one day, and despising it the next. I feel like this roller coaster of body love/hate is one that I’ll never be able to get off of.
Recently, I went on a really hard hike by myself. It was long, and steep, and I was sore for days after, but despite the few extra pounds I’ve put on in the past year, I couldn’t help but think as I hiked up the side of a really steep mountain alone how grateful I was for my body. How lucky I am to have a body that is healthy, strong, and can do hard things.
I’m grateful for the strong arms I have to still be able to lift and hold all three of my kids even though my oldest is now 11. I’m grateful that I’m a relatively healthy person that has had minimal health issues in my life, and I’m happy to report that some days, I’m really proud of the way I look, too.
I’d like to blame it all on society that I have bad days, too, but in all honesty, I’m not sure how much society is to blame. Sure, it influences me, but I also just want to be skinnier some days because I like how I look better, and I like how I feel, too.
I want to shed the pounds because some days I’m vain and want to fit into smaller clothes. I want to have more confidence, and dare I say that sometimes, I just feel like losing those extra 20 pounds will make me happy, dang it.
But, chocolate, cheese, and peanut butter also make me happy so I am stuck here in the middle of this up and down love/hate relationship with my body. Am I tired of it? Yes. But, am I also grateful to have a body that is healthy, and does what I need it to do? Absolutely.
So, for now, I’ll keep trying my best to get more veggies in my diet, and also enjoy a cookie once in a while. I’ll try not to eat a second helping of potatoes, although I probably will sometimes, too. And, I’ll keep loving my body when it serves me well, and also keep wishing that it looked a little bit different too.
I’ll eat salads some days, and nachos the next, and I’ll just keep trying to own my imperfections and also keep working toward that goal of whatever it is I think is “ideal” one raw spinach leaf at a time.
I may never be satisfied 100 percent because I like cake, and I like to eat it sometimes, too.
But, I know I’ll always be grateful to have this body I’ve been given. Even if some days I wish it were a little tiny bit easier to get those skinny jeans on my butt and thighs.