these are not actually my feet.
I got on the scale the other day and did a double take. It was the first time I'd seen that number since I got married. It was a good number.
Sure, I don't look how I looked when I got married. Back then my tummy didn't bear such a strong resemblance to the top of a Costco muffin (mmm Costco muffins. the chocolate kind. mmmm). But my wrinkly little tummy has given me three bouncing baby boys and that's a miracle I simply can't regret or take for granted. And I've been doing some exercising so hopefully there's a light at the end of the tunnel. (I wish I knew where all the pounds were melting off of. Maybe the boys cut my hair while I was asleep?)
I have kept up with this diet for the last four months and it has been helping me change my attitude about eating (I say as I sit here sucking on a piece of candy). Most of the time I don't think I overeat for emotional reasons. I think it's more psychological. More habitual. More just loving the taste of food, and wanting to taste it longer. Wanting to taste it for as long as my husband, a 6'1" male, can. The reality is that I am a 4' 11 3/4" woman, thirty years old, and post partum for the third time, so let's be honest: I can't eat as much as other people and expect to be thin.
But that's okay. Why should I need to? If I like it that much, I can have more later, when I'm hungry again. How ironic it is that my tongue, just one of my five senses, can have so much effect on the rest of my life? Do I let my sense of smell rule over me with an iron fist and make me do things?
I found myself in a mother's lounge one Sunday with two other young mothers. One was gorgeous. Very tall, very thin, with long, thick red hair and freckles. She was glamorous. I was a little in awe just being in there with her. The other girl seemed to be about as opposite the first gal as she could be, and as she talked and talked about her life, her vulgar, "share-it-all" conversation style really turned me off. So I was amazed by Gorgeous Redhead Lady's attitude toward her. She sat there listening intently, offering comments and suggestions, and appearing to really enjoy the conversation. I felt humbled. When Opposite Lady left the room, Gorgeous Redhead Lady turned toward me and we started talking.
this picture came up when I googled "gorgeous redheaded lady."
this is not actually what the girl looked like at all.
I'm not sure how it came up, but she told me that in high school she was 40 pounds overweight. I gawked. I couldn't imagine it. She told me that one day she just decided she didn't want to look like that anymore. She wanted to go shopping before a dance and actually find a dress that fit her. So she prayed for help and began to lose the weight. She said it took her a long time to change her attitude about food, but that now she doesn't struggle with it anymore. At all. She thinks of food as fuel for her body, and nothing more.
I'd really like to be more like that beautiful readhead. I wonder if her time being awkward and overweight filled her with compassion for other people, no matter what they look like or how they talk. And I was so inspired by her attitude toward food.
Nothing more than fuel for the body.
I don't need to look like a supermodel, but could it be a reality for me not to struggle with food anymore? I have wondered since that conversation if there is a possibility of me living like that for the rest of my life. Is there a way for me to make permanent good habits without looking back?
I'm not yet to the point where food is "just fuel" for my body because I enjoy it so much (how fun would life really be if I didn't have dessert?) but these days I'm moderate in how much of it I enjoy. That means I save up calories for stuff I know I'm going to love. I don't actually count the calories, but I eat a little less of the things I don't care about or skip them altogether. Why eat the mashed potatoes when I can take a little more stuffing instead? Why eat the oatmeal raisin cookies at the church activity if I know I've got Josh's homemade chocolate ice cream at home? Know what I mean?
So I hope I can keep this up. I love feeling the way I do right now. I'm trying not to enjoy losing weight too much, and trying not to base my self-worth on my weight, especially since the next time I have a baby I'll have to start at square one again. But it's a process and I think I might finally be getting it.
(Unless, of course, the holidays decide to get me instead.)