The piece you’re about to jump into has been camping in the half-baked, brain-dump-wasteland of my drafts folder for somewhere around two or three months. Except fully baked, complete with photos.
I brought the subject up with a couple of girls I’m super close to who then kept encouraging me to post, but I still had trouble pulling the publish trigger. I would reread it myself, and could almost physically feel the judgey eye rolls, the get over yourself eye rolls, the what is she looking for here eye rolls…which I’ll probably get by more than one person. And I decided that’s fine.
I decided if this is a place for transparency and openness to exist, a post like this might have to happen a time or two. Even if body image isn’t necessarily “a little thing that makes life sweet,” but pretty much the polar opposite for a lot of ladies.
So that’s why this post is happening –come what eye rolls may. I’ll try and explain myself.
I hit the absolute thinnest I had probably ever been. Hint: it was not last week.
It was a season of unhealthy amounts of stress on the daily + recovering from back surgery + a root canal over Thanksgiving (acting as a villainous holiday portion monitor) + the stomach flu I was 99% sure would end my life and/or postpone my wedding (neither of which happened, by the absolute grace of God.) All said and done, my swimsuit fit great, but I’m pretty sure I wasn’t exactly in good health. I know I wasn’t.
Fast-forward to lately, and I am absolutely not the thinnest I’ve ever been. I joke with Austin that I could use another back surgery every now and then. It’s a pretty hilarious joke –if I do say so myself– because that was one of the most physically grueling seasons I’ve yet to experience. And sometimes I’m not so much joking as I am seriously thinking just a little bit that that experience might be worth it to shed a few pounds and looks the way I did then, which is when it sort of stops being funny.
This isn’t something I enjoy talking about or ever planned to here. The last thing I want to be is another voice in the clutter complaining about my body, telling you you can do it! we can do it! everyone can do it!, how to do it!, or defining what exactly it even is. Because I kind of don’t have a clue about any of those.
If you’re disappointed this isn’t that, well, I guess stop reading. This is just where I’m at right now in my own head, something clocking a lot of minutes on my mind these days, and why honestly posting has been lighter than my perfectly usual *semi-light.*
I don’t want anyone here to go writing me a prescription for Zoloft just yet, but it’s really hard getting into things I usually want to write about when thoughts of self-doubt and embarrassment are sitting heavy on my self esteem like the hippo I feel like in my old jeans.
I can’t seem to locate the magic wand that’ll get me back into my high school skinnies or raise my self esteem ten points, but I know I can’t do nothing.
In the same way there were a multitude of reasons I was an unhealthy skinnier Robin, there are a multitude of reason I’ve become an unhealthy not-skinnier Robin.
- My life has gone from two hundred miles a minute to sedentary. I have a desk job so opposite of active right now that if I wanted to, my glutes could be glued to my chair for a solid 40 hours a week. I strategically map out trips to the office kitchen to refill my water and coffee throughout the day for a little human interaction + to get a few steps in.
- I got married! We’re really happy! We’re now watching my shows + his shows + our shows on TV! We love food! Seriously, we love food. All food. Food is one of the best gifts God ever gave Man, and a lot of our conversations revolved around “the best types of freshly grated cheese” or “perfectly blended spices” or “pizzas that try and do too much.” We’re just the lost-in-wedded-bliss newlywed worst.
- Shopping and running from class to work to class within a minute of my life was my daily cardio. I graduated, subtracted my mall super frequency, and forgot to add a treadmill for quite some time.
- Aging and slowing metabolism and hormones and stuff.
- On-and-on-and-on into the ever expanding Excuse Mill I go.
At one point I thought, “Maybe this is just what my Robin-as-an-adult size is going to be, maybe I just shouldn’t worry about it!” But I think that was kind of a load of crap. After getting married I was also eating like a five year old given free reign of the snack aisle in Walmart. The best and worst part about having my own kitchen is that whatever my pantry is stocked with, I picked. It’s all my favorite things! All of my favorite sugary, gluten-riddled, starchy, cellophane prepackaged things! Plus ingredients to all of my favorite things to cook.
Bacon and chocolate chips topped the grocery list nearly every trip.
Since those first several newly-married months discovering what my favorite delicious meals are to prepare, I’ve spent considerable time researching and practicing delicious healthy meals against my instincts (like this smoothie or this chicken.) The app that has seriously done it for me is MyFitnessPal as far as actually realizing what the heck I’m feeding the physical vessel God gave me that’s supposed to last until I’m 106. Or something.
It isn’t perfect, it can be a little quirky, but I’ve consistently logged my meals -for better or worse- over 100 days now to the point it’s simply habit. I try to not beat myself up when my numbers for the day slip into the red. For me, it’s more about knowing and awareness of the content of my food than anything, not making my self esteem worse. It’s definitely helped me shift into better habits, and see what one extra Oreo actually means. At this point, I’m working on a lifestyle shift rather than a specific diet, although I’ve been tempted more than once to give myself that kick-start to healthier living.
Someday I might. I might even share the process on here. You might rather die than have to read about my body image ever again.
At this point, I’m not willing to sacrifice all that is food for a diet, because whoever started the “nothing tastes as good as skinny feels” mess on Pinterest doesn’t love donuts like I do. My word of the hour: moderation. And kale. And since I’m not totally limiting myself to fish, lettuce, and water, I know I need to get my sofa-loving bum in motion, too.
There’s a fine line between being motivated to get a really solid workout in daily, and hating yourself for not fitting more reps into an already jam packed schedule. I tend to fall on the self-loathing latter, but I’m working on the balance.
“Something is better than sitting. I’m a full-time working lady with a husband and a pretty full calendar these days, give me a break, Me.” -Something of my internal mantra lately when I get too down on myself, but trying to balance not using it as an excuse.
I guess the point of all of these words is sometimes being a woman isn’t all sprinkles and sparkles and happy pink sports bras and wearing awesome lipstick. And it’s hard. And it’s hard to admit.
And I don’t really know how a post like this is supposed to end for the three people -including my mom- who have (likely) made it this far. I guess maybe… thank you?
This felt like more or less a lengthy confession of a weight on my heart concerning the weight on my rump in hopes of starting a dialog with any girls who feel like they’re rocking in the same boat. Or at least show you you aren’t alone. Anyone feel me?
Comment below or with the little talking bubble near the title, it’s super easy. Or shoot me a personal message on social media. Or a postcard. Or just give me a hug next time you see me if you want one, I’m open to that, too.