My Weight Gain Does Not Make Me A Failure - The Art of Better


My Weight Gain Does Not Make Me A Failure


I tend to be an overachiever in just about everything I do, but I’ve decided to share my biggest recent ‘failure’ with everyone in the hopes that getting this out of my head and down in writing will help me move past my mental or emotional blocks. I have gained fifty pounds and gone up six sizes over the last eighteen months.


My body feels sluggish. Clumsy. Hazy. I feel like I am wearing a thick, heavy winter coat that weighs me down all the time. My feet hurt every single day and I catch myself constantly slouching. My muscle mass is gone, replaced by a squishiness that is startling when I unexpectedly catch my reflection in a mirror or window. I’ve had to buy all new clothes because I looked like the Hulk in the ones I could still squeeze into for a while. I am the biggest I have ever been.


How did this happen?


It has been a perfect storm of issues over the last two years.


We took legal guardianship of my niece, who was ten at the time. Shortly thereafter, I became a huge ball of anxiety and my doctor put me on anxiety meds after I burst into tears after she said ‘hello’ at the start of a visit. I have always had an anxiety disorder but it seems that taking on a tween with a pretty heartbreaking traumatic background shoved me over the edge and into the abyss. I look back now and go “duh”. I immediately started packing on the weight from that medication, ended up back at my doctor’s office to try a different one and then another visit and added an extra med. Ugh. Finally went back to her and told her I wanted off everything. I will deal with my anxiety in other ways. A whole post is coming on that subject in the very near future.


I’ve exercised less and less. . . until finally it has been months since I’ve worked out. At my best, I was working out 4-5 times a week for at least an hour. Elliptical & hand weights. It is so easy to make the excuse of having no time.


My skin has always been temperamental. Birth control pills helped when I was a teenager and I finally got so fed up with being broken out that I went back on them. That little pill didn’t help matters.


Eating healthy takes planning and effort. I stopped taking that time to cook myself a nutritious breakfast and almost never pack my lunches anymore. It’s easy to justify binging on fast food when there’s no other food prepped for lunch. I am the queen of self-justification.


I have fallen hard off the wagon. The Coca-Cola free wagon. Before I quit drinking soda altogether about ten years ago, I would easily drink five or six Cokes a day. Oh, the cravings. They never went away, even when I hadn’t touched the stuff for years. Once my shape began to devolve into ’round’, it was easy to say “what the hell” and dive head first into an extra-large, ice-cold Coke. It is, and will always be, my liquid crack. I have had one or two of them most days for the last two months.


Despite all this, my weight gain does not make me a failure. Even as I type those words, it feels like a lie. That evil little bitch in my head is laughing at how deluded that makes me. Intellectually, I know my worth does not lie in my appearance but, emotionally, that’s the way it feels sometimes.


I just need to remember: My life is good. I am ok. I am whole. I am working my way back to feeling like myself. It may take some time but I. Am. Worth. It. and I will not give up.



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