There are parts of me that are big.
I have big hair and I have a big laugh (you’ll hear me a mile away). I like big books and big hugs. I have big thoughts and big hopes…Of course, I also have big thighs, big boobs, and what I have semi-affectionately dubbed my “birthing hips.”
I suppose along the way I have come to equate big with bad, and that is where the problems start. In a culture that values sameness and the all important “chill” we (I) often try to make ourselves smaller, to shrink those parts of us that would make us stand out or make us too much, make us “too big.” I’ve done this many times in the past and I do it today, and I am sure I will continue to in the future. More than that, I am damn good at it. I can discretely slide behind someone in a photo. I can redirect a conversation with so much ease that even I don’t notice. I can sit quietly while people hate on T-Swift instead of proclaiming my true feelings (LOVE).
But I don’t want to be good at it. My main goal in life is to become an interesting old lady, and the simple fact is that people who hide themselves away and who are afraid to shout about who and what they love can’t be interesting. Passion and struggle and victory and defeat, THAT is interesting. I want that. I want to stand proudly at the front of the photo; I want to let the conversation be about me, I want to say, “You are wrong! Taylor Swift speaks right to my heart in a way that is easy to understand!”
So this project, for me, while it is technically about getting smaller, is really about getting bigger. It is about embracing every single thing I can. It is about taking it all in and letting it make me bigger. It is about taking my body as it is right now and lovingly changing it in appreciation for all it does for me (And also still giving it brownies sometimes, because if I can’t also embrace brownies I don’t want any part of this!).
All of this is so much easier said than done. I should know as I have been trying to do it since I began my first real diet 11 years ago at age 17. But now I understand that losing weight has to be about more than simple numbers and pounds, otherwise I will completely lose myself to it. All I will think about will be eating and exercise and results and I will forget to focus on the things that can make me bigger person. This is also why I am electing not to weigh myself regularly during this project. I know what I weight now, and of course, I have an ideal “goal weight”, but during all my other diets I have found the scale to be defeating. It seemed a constant reminder of how far I had to go and how easily it could get sidetracked. Whatever pride I felt in having a plan and sticking to it well was immediately lost when the numbers weren’t reflected the way I hoped they would be. And truly, it’s not the numbers that matter to me. It is the changes. It is the way I feel in my body and they way I stick to the plan I set out for myself. That’s all I can do. That is what matters. Let’s do this! Things are about to get interesting…