I guess this house is some kind of critter magnet, because they just keep showing up in my back yard. The latest visitor, however, was someone I could really relate to.
That, my friends, is the fattest toad I think I have ever seen.
Also? That is pretty much how I feel every morning when I look in the mirror.
Now before you start thinking this is some pity party where I want you to leave comments telling me a) I’m not fat, b) I shouldn’t be so hard on myself, or c) I’m beautiful “on the inside”, let me assure you I don’t want to hear any of those things. Ever. Those are the ultimate “yes, honey, you’re fat but I don’t want to hurt your feelings” remarks and they don’t really serve any positive purpose. Whether or not I’m fat is not the issue here. If I didn’t know it before, I knew it the day my 4-year-old smacked me on the rear and said, “Hey mama, why’s it so BIG back here?!” (You know you really love someone when they say something like that and still live to see another day.)
The issue, rather, is that I am tired. Tired of being the “funny fat” girl, yes, but mostly just tired of dealing with it. I’m tired of having to obsess over every calorie I put in my mouth, tired of feeling guilty for eating what I want, tired of shopping for fat clothes, and tired of being ashamed of the way I look and hiding away in my house. I’m tired of brats at school telling my son how fat his mom is, tired of “friends” who used to invite me to dinner when I was skinny, but are ashamed to be seen with me now.
I’m tired of it being the main focus of my entire life. Every.single.day.
But guess what? It doesn’t matter if I’m tired of it. It’s my reality. And it’s not going to take care of itself. If I ever want to be a
skinnier healthier mom, I have to obsess over it. Every bite of food I put in my mouth matters. Every minute spent exercising, or not, matters. Every choice, every minute, every day matters.
I think the hardest part of this, for me, is the fact that it takes time. I’m a procrastinator, I work well under pressure and I like things I can complete at the last minute. But, try as I might, I can’t shed half my body weight overnight. Oh I’ve tried those things that promise to make you lose it fast, but I just ended up very sick…and still fat. The cold, hard, truth is that I have to work on this daily and it’s going to take a lot of time. And it will never be something I “complete”, because I’ll have to work at it for the rest of my life.
Maybe you can relate to my weight-loss struggle. Maybe you’re a size zero who eats a Big Mac for lunch every day and can’t understand it at all. But the truth of the matter is, we can all relate to the struggle of having to work at something longer than we want, having to face difficult choices on a daily basis, and having to learn to love where we are, at any given moment, while we work toward a painfully distant goal. Maybe you’re overcoming an addiction, making sacrifices to get out of debt, saving for your first home, or working on a degree to better yourself or your family. None of it happens overnight, and none of it comes easily. The best things in life rarely do.
What matters is that we continue to work at it. Even when we’re tired of it. Even those mornings when you wake up and want to forget it all and give up. Even when it feels like you will never.ever.ever reach your goal. We have to keep trying for it, one choice at a time, one step at a time, no matter how tiny the steps. As the saying goes, you’re either moving forward or sliding back. I, for one, want to keep moving forward.