This post takes guts (pardon the pun) – so deep breathe and I ask myself, Do I want to lose weight?
So many people ask me these types of questions on Instagram “Have you lost weight – gained weight – how much do you weigh, how much did you weigh when you had an eating disorder?!”. Sigh. These questions serve as an example of how obsessed our society is with bodies and comparing ourselves to every one else. My weight, becomes a topic for discussion the minute I post a selfie in a bikini because I am overweight. So this post is particularly difficult because in a sense there is a part of me that wants to lose weight.
There you have it folks, Danielle Galvin wants to lose weight.
Yet when I step back and start to listen to my inner monologue of why I should/need/want to lose weight alarm bells go off. It starts sneaky, like losing weight will make me healthier (good), losing weight means I have more stores in my direct town I can buy clothes from (okay cool options), it will mean I am fitter (not always the truth)… then spirals losing weight will make me prove all those people wrong, it will give me control, my boyfriend would love me more, people would have more respect for me, it would gain me more followers, it would make me more beautiful, it would make me a better person… and on and on and on. Those things, the things that spiral that bully myself, that are blatant crap! Why hello, that is my eating disorder.
Let me clear this up for you me actively, purposefully, knowingly choosing to try to lose weight triggers me. Even though I am bigger than I was during my eating disorder thinking about losing weight triggers my self worth and makes it disappear. I have no self worth when I think about losing weight. Numbers, Calories, Ideas of what to eat, where to exercise, should I join a gym? Should I make an eating chart, maybe I should weigh myself… and on and on and on. It targets the core thought still in my mind sometimes from my eating disorder that “You would be happier, better, more beautiful and more loved if you were skinny” – Truth is that’s probably bullshit.
It is so freaking hard to try and think about making actual decisions about losing weight or becoming healthier because I am still recovering from an eating disorder. Pasta still makes me feel uncomfortable, I still take comments on instagram to heart sometimes and I still feel defined by my weight. Still.
So instead of jumping on the scale drawing up a goals chart and basically throwing myself into eating disorder waters and go SWIM Biatch. I am trying to slowly, little by little to implement changes, which support my overall health. Mental & Physical included. Some people are going to read this and say I am ‘Hiding behind lies of an eating disorder’ or being ‘Lazy’ but truth is I am being smart.
Smart because I know stepping on a scale for me is playing Russian roulette maybe I’d be fine or maybe I would be unstoppable at listening to my illness. Smart because even though I do want to some day walk into a gym class again, right now it feels me with such anxiety it sometimes causes a panic attack. Smart because even though I might not be the optimal fitness queen of healthy like the world is obsessed with I am trying my best to be healthier. I have stopped drinking soda, I try to walk more, and we brought tennis equipment and play every now and again. I am making little changes so that overall I check in with my soul and I am staying safe.
Maybe I’ll lose weight, maybe not but in the end I need to realise that looking after myself and achieving the most happy life I can right now doesn’t include a monitoring my weight with numbers, with anything.
I can’t stress how much this plagues me knowing my weight loss focus could go from 0 – 100 in a month easy, I could post all the right things, say it was for the greatest reason “To be healthy” and yet I know on the inside, in my mind again I would be in a prison, I would be unhealthy, I would try to lose weight AT ANY COST. I would lose myself, my recovery, my health, my worth, my goals and I would have one aim – AT ANY COST. That scares me more, than people calling me hambeast or fatty. Then people telling me I should be more active, because I am trying my best. To meet both needs to yes be healthy but also be sane.
To many people this might not make sense, but to any sufferer they will know what I mean. For me monitoring my weight and trying to lose it all guns blazing is like putting a bottle of vodka in front of a recovering alcoholic and say one time won’t kill you. It will. Just like most recovering alcoholics there is something in me that feeds off the trifecta of self worth, weight and love. No longer will I be a slave to my eating disorder.
Often I feel as if that message isn’t clear to people because quite simply I am overweight. So it’s like just have a healthy eating plan and workout, it’s all G. Yeah it ain’t – an eating disorder is in the mind, created, manifested and waiting for the opportunity to kill you from the inside out.
So I will take my slow walks, slow changes, slow achievements, I will mould my mental health and work on my self-love. I will do it my way in the best way I know how. No matter if I am fat or skinny, what my eating disorder taught me is above all I should be HAPPY. That comes in many shapes and sizes, including mine.
I encourage you to find your happy and instead of asking Do I want to lose weight? ask yourself Am I happy and what would make my whole health (emotional, spiritual and physical health) better?
Danielle Galvin xxo