Weighting for Life

by Carol Hess on June 27, 2011

Are you “weighting” for life? 

The dialogue in your head goes something like this:

“When I weigh (fill in your goal weight) I’ll go on that trip.”  Or ”When I weigh                                 , I’ll do live speaking engagements for my business.”Or “When I weigh                                       , I’ll start dancing again.”  Or “When I weigh                                   , I’ll look up that old friend.” 

That’s what I call weighting for life, and I’ve done it my whole life.  I’ve remained on the sidelines of my life, waiting for the magical day when I would weigh a magical number and could finally start living my magical life. 

“Carol, you now weigh 130 pounds soaking wet.  You now have permission to live your life.” 

That’s when I would buy the wardrobe of my dreams, land the job of my dreams, meet the man of my dreams, build the house of my dreams, have the children of my dreams, write the book of my dreams — in short, become the Me of my dreams. 

There was only one problem with that plan.  I hadn’t weighed 130 pounds soaking wet since I was fourteen years old.  And I never would.

So I upped my magical weight.  But as soon as I had managed to get within striking range of my new magical number on the scale, I would go off whatever diet had gotten me so close to my dreams.  I would gain all the weight I had lost, and poof!  My magic number, my magic weight, my magic body, my magic life would disappear.  Abracadabra!  Everything would vanish in a cloud of potato chip crumbs and chocolate chip morsels. 

And so it continued.  The more weight I gained, the further I got from my magic number on the scale.  The further I got from my magic number on the scale, the more I put my life on hold.  In one of life’s crueler paradoxes, the bigger I got, the smaller my life became.  The more space I took up on the planet, the more invisible I became. 

I started to pay a very steep price for the weight I was carrying in terms of my physical, emotional, and spiritual health.  But the more desperate I became to lose weight, the harder it became to do it.  It got to the point that my biggest challenge wasn’t staying on a diet.  It was going on the diet to begin with.  I had deprived myself of so much living because of my weight.  I couldn’t bring myself to deprive myself of one more thing, even if it was the food that was taking my life away. 

And that’s the Catch 22 situation in which I found myself.  The more I put my life on hold until I lost the weight, the more what was left of my life became about food.  The more my life became about food, the more weight I gained.  The more weight I had to lose, the more I put my life on hold.  It was a vicious and (quite literally) deadly cycle. 

Then one day I realized something very, very important.  I had to stop making my life about what I weighed.  I had to make my life about living no matter what I weighed

I had to stop making my self worth about what I weighed.  I had to love myself enough to start living life again no matter what I weighed

My whole entire life, I had had it back asswards.  I didn’t have to weigh a certain number on the scale to live the life I wanted.  I had to live the life I wanted to weigh a certain number on the scale.

 So I stopped weighting for life and started living it.  Finally. 

What are you weighting/waiting for?

by Carol Hess

10 comments

Categories Self Care, The Mind Game, Weight Loss

{ 10 comments… read them below or add one }

avatar Sandi Amorim June 27, 2011 at 12:08 pm

Carol,
This post is so poignant it made my heart ache just a little. I remembered all the times I weighted and put things off. And also how so many people weight/wait for that elusive someday. Like your magical weight that someday never materializes leaving us sad and disappointed.

So right now in my life, what have I been weighting for? I’ve been weighting to have my back pain disappear before doing anything active. I’ve been weighting to buy myself nice things because somewhere in the back of my mind a little voice said I didn’t deserve them until I lost some weight.

As I’ve said over on the Effindiets site, fuck scales and weighting.

That is all.

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avatar Carol Hess June 27, 2011 at 1:01 pm

Absolutely, Sandi! Couldn’t have said it better myself. :) I don’t think anyone on her deathbed has ever worried about what she weighed that day. But I do think she might have wished she hadn’t wasted so much time weighting.

I identify with both ways you are weighting. I’m going to go take the walk I skipped this morning because I was “creaky.” (Thanks for the push!) And I’m going to buy that gorgeous houseplant I’ve been wanting for weeks. Yay!

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avatar Joanna Saunders June 27, 2011 at 12:41 pm

Carol,
I too, have been weighting all my adult life too. And at the moment I am right back at the “I need to start another diet” because I have regained (again) the 20 lbs I lost last year. This time however I cannot bring myself to diet again. I am done!!!
I am part of the effindiets program and I am learning about the messages I give myself – whoa I wouldn’t talk to my worst enemy like that!!! I have also learned that when you believe something about yourself whether it be I am intelligent or I am a fucking fat pig (that one comes from my first husband) then that is what you are!!!
I am now working on changing the story and my beliefs about my body and my weight.

Thanks for the great post.

Joanna

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avatar Carol Hess June 27, 2011 at 1:10 pm

Hi, Joanna — So glad to have another Effindiets person hanging out here on Star Polisher. Welcome! Isn’t it incredible what we allow ourselves and/or others to call us? We do such major violence to ourselves. Good for you for doing the work it takes (and it does take work — also courage) to change your story and your beliefs. You’re so worth it!

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avatar Anne Melnyk June 27, 2011 at 1:03 pm

Carol, this is such an awesome post. I loved what you said: “I didn’t have to weigh a certain number on the scale to live the life I wanted. I had to live the life I wanted to weigh a certain number on the scale.”

Just put a guilty sticker on my forehead. I did the the whole weighting for life thing for too many years.

I’ve stopped struggling with the whole weight thing and am just choosing to live my life. Funny thing, as soon as I let go of the struggle, I started seeing results. Counter-intuitive I know, but there is an important a distinction between stopping the struggle and giving up or giving in.

Also gotta get on the Effindiets bandwagon. Its a great way to change your story, give up the struggle and embrace your naturally slim self.

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avatar Carol Hess June 27, 2011 at 1:43 pm

Hi, Anne — another Effindiets-er. Welcome! I’m discovering the same thing you are — that when I release my death grip on how much I weigh or what my body looks like, then the results start to happen rather “effortlessly.” I’m still screwed up though — I thought I better put effortlessly in quotes or the results would stop happening. Ah, Carol — Ye of little faith. :) So great to have you stopping by Star Polisher, Anne.

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avatar Karen Paritee June 27, 2011 at 6:48 pm

Thanks for polishing us all with this post, Carol. And Sandi, thanks for the recommendation to come over and read it. (Sandi, given how you feel about “there is no someday” – and how you have said also in no uncertain terms :-) how you feel about scales and diets – I can see why you thought this was an important and poignant post.)

I’m right with you, Anne, loved this… “I didn’t have to weigh a certain number on the scale to live the life I wanted. I had to live the life I wanted to weigh a certain number on the scale.” So beautiful and so powerful, Carol, you got me right in the heart. Whenever we say we’re waiting until we’re thin to be happy, it makes me wonder… If we are or were truly waiting, how do we explain all of the happy times we’ve had in the meantime?

Hanging out with women who aren’t weighting anymore certainly makes for some happy times, thank you!

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avatar Carol Hess June 27, 2011 at 11:12 pm

Welcome, Karen! So nice to have the Effindiets Queen stop by Star Polisher. You make an excellent point — how do we explain the happy times we’ve had when we weren’t thin? I hate to admit this, but there have been a few times in my life when I’ve been happy (while not thin) and said to myself, “What the heck have you got to be so happy about?” I was bound and determined not to allow myself to be happy until I was thin. Good grief! That’s nothing short of insanity! So glad we are all breaking the chains of such insanity.

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avatar LaVonne Ellis July 2, 2011 at 8:19 pm

I think I just heard a big CLICK in my brain. I’ve been weighting to lose weight so I could buy some decent clothes that FIT, so I won’t be embarrassed to meet blog friends when they come to town. (And yes, I’ve made excuses in the past.) I’ve also been conveniently broke when it comes to travelling to meet new friends (like Sandi). Now I see that instead of being an infoproduct junkie, I should divert that money to buying a few nice clothes and a savings account marked “LIFE” so I can do all the things I’ve dreamed of doing (like visiting Vancouver) before it’s too late. Thank you!

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avatar Carol Hess July 4, 2011 at 8:49 pm

LaVonne, thank you for your honesty! I can absolutely identify with everything you wrote about — weighting to buy clothes, weighting to meet blog friends, weighting to travel to meet new online friends. I want to go to Vancouver too — mainly to meet Sandi but also just to see it because I’ve heard so much about it. (Shall we make a pact to go together?) As if our blog friends and Sandi would judge us because of our weight. Good grief! We know who the biggest judges are when it comes to our weight, don’t we? When I think of all the womanpower and love and light that is weighting to shine when our world needs ever drop of brilliance it can get . . . . Well, I think we should start a club — Weighters No More!

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