Taking Responsibility for My Weight Issues
Looking for Love in All the Wrong Places
I think I’ve finally figured out why I let myself go for so long and am now approximately 50 pounds overweight. This came to me just today, while I was preparing lunch for myself (a bowl of chicken noodle soup instead of my usual two peanut butter sandwiches and potato chips).
Basically, I stopped caring about my appearance because nobody else cared. This isn't to say that I can only do something when someone else cares enough to allow me to do it, but rather that no one loved me enough to say, “Hey, you’re putting on a little weight. Let’s start eating healthier so we can live long and avoid the hardship of disease.”
Or something like that, at least.
In truth, I was, for years, so intent on making failed relationships work that I stopped paying attention to myself. I didn’t notice how big I’d gotten until that recent day when I sat in a restaurant and saw my reflection in a wall mirror (oh, how I remember that day…it still makes me ill to recall). But, when I say that "I stopped paying attention to myself," it hurts my heart. How does one get so caught up in pleasing others that she no longer sees her true reflection? Even worse, how does one get to the point that she no longer cares what is reflected back to her?
I can tell you how that happens. In life, people usually either win or lose. By this I mean that people become accustomed to successes, big and small, or failures, again, big and small. With time, these successes or failures create a sort of standard that we each come to accept. In recent years, I’ve grown accustomed to failure. For so long, I didn’t know what I wanted to do professionally, and that tore me up inside. I also couldn’t find love, but rather than escape toxic marriages, I stayed there hoping and praying something would change.
In retrospect, I see the only thing that could have changed was me. I should never have accepted failure as the status quo. I should have stood up, shouted in somebody’s face that I am a person and that I have wants and needs like the rest of the world. I should have walked out the door with the knowledge that I would never be heard by that miserable spouse, but I at least tried and could carry the experience in a positive manner into my next relationship.
That never happened.
Instead, toxicity began to flow in my veins instead of blood, and I stopped caring about myself because I was preoccupied and exhausted.
Now, I’m forced to completely alter my lifestyle, and way of thinking, in order to shed this weight that has become a badge I must wear. No matter where I go or how I present myself, people are apt to judge me on the size of my body. At one time, I would have pronounced this judgment as unfair, but, today, I can sit here and say it is exactly what I deserve. I am the one who created this situation and should thus be held accountable. Maybe that’s what I needed all along; to be responsible for me.