What am I doing here?

This is a new blog for me. I write a personal blog about a little bit of everything, Closet Narcissist, but lately wrote several posts in a row about my new perspectives about size and weight loss and health and food, and I decided to give myself a separate outlet for this topic. I think I’ll have a lot more to say about it, and this is a better place, away from the posts about my preschoolers and my husband and the rest of my life. Partly, I wanted to give myself some distance from some earlier body-shaming posts I’d written (and since removed). Having a whole new blog on which to do so is symbolic of the new start I’m giving myself with food and my body.

Here’s more about me, from my shiny new About page:

I’m Abi. I’m nearly 30 years old, and I can’t remember a time in my life when I didn’t think something was wrong with my body.

I’ve been dieting in one form or another — monitoring my weight, measuring and limiting my portion size, counting calories and Points, eliminating entire food groups, or just straight up eliminating food altogether — since preadolescence. I’ve hated myself, my body, my shape, my size. I’ve felt guilt and anger and regret over my lack of willpower.

I’ve spent an awful lot of time thinking about food, trying not to eat food, exercising off food, obsessing about food. I’ve believed that nothing tastes as good as being thin feels. I’ve bought clothes that were too small because I knew I was going to lose weight, and then they’d fit perfectly. I’ve donated the same unworn clothes to Goodwill.

I’ve spent excessive amounts of energy trying not to be fat. And I’m still fat.

So I’m beginning to recognize that the problem isn’t with my willpower — it’s with the goal. Through the amazing community of Fat Acceptance writers online, I’m learning about how my body is designed, and I’m discovering that what it isn’t designed for is shrinking.

So I’m working on this. I’m practicing loving myself as I am, as a creation of God — instead of assuming He created me to be thin, and blaming myself for destroying His creation. I’m practicing listening to my body for what it needs, instead of trying to eat according to a system of external regulations that aren’t designed for my body. I’m learning to trust that God made me in a fearful, wonderful way that’s as capable of regulating food as it is of regulating my breathing and heartbeat.

I’m learning that being thin or fat doesn’t have to feel like anything, any more than being tall or short does. And I’m learning that sometimes, food tastes really good.

I believe that a thin body is not necessarily a healthy body, and a fat body is not necessarily an unhealthy — that a person’s health cannot be determined by just their size. I believe that a person can be healthy in any size body, and that intentionally trying to lose weight is nearly always unsuccessful, and leads to a less healthy body, not a healthier one. And most importantly, I believe that hating one’s body is completely antithetical to improving one’s health. I’m writing this blog as I try to integrate these beliefs — which I believe are validated by scientific research — into my lifestyle.

For more information and the science behind these beliefs, please read:

Dances with Fat: There Is No Healthy Weight

Shapely Prose: Don’t You Realize Fat Is Unhealthy

Thank you for being here, reading this. I hope we can get to know each other a little better.

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2 thoughts on “What am I doing here?

  1. Just wanted to let you know that I’m enjoying reading your journey. I love when you wrote, “I’m practicing listening to my body for what it needs, instead of trying to eat according to a system of external regulations that aren’t designed for my body. I’m learning to trust that God made me in a fearful, wonderful way that’s as capable of regulating food as it is of regulating my breathing and heartbeat.” I think that is so key. It’s amazing to me how excellently God designed our bodies. I feel like when I trust my body, I’m trusting Him to take care of me.
    Even having lost weight, I find myself asking when it will be enough. And goodness, what will I think about if I’m not thinking about how much food I have or haven’t eaten? You’ve reminded me to get back to where I started last year in just listening to my body and knowing that God made me and loves me and can use me however I am. So,thank you!

    1. “I feel like when I trust my body, I’m trusting Him to take care of me.”
      Exactly! This is what I keep coming back to. And I’m finding that somehow when I’m doing this with food, it bleeds over into so many other areas of my life as well. Thanks for your comment — I’m glad you’re here!

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