Do you suppose,
that since I eat so little,
You might kindly remove yourself from my middle?
My sincere apologies to all the fine poets of this word – I composed this little number in my head on the way to work one morning during a moment of self-loathing.
I’m part of the not-so-exclusive club of women who struggle with weight issues. As a young person, I tended to be heavier than other girls my age. I also “blossomed” sooner. Naturally, I was teased. It didn’t help that I wore glasses, had curly hair and a nickname that rhymed with “fatty.”
While I don’t believe I suffer from body dysmorphic disorder (BDD), the way I view my body was certainly shaped by the opinions of my peers and popular culture. As I grew in age and confidence, my focus on weight management was less about the way I looked and more about the way I felt. Nonetheless, old habits die-hard. And now that I’ve entered menopause, those “old habits” are starting to feel like familiar friends.
Almost like clockwork, the scale started creeping up around age 48. Now, at age 50, I’m the owner of a full-blown “adipose belly.” Lovely. Ironically, I’ve been trying to follow Weight Watchers for the past two years because it has always been the one program that has worked for me. No matter what I do, nothing seems to “click.” Ironically, I feel as though I’m in pretty good shape. I do Pilates once a week, typically log more than 10,000 steps a day, and focus on eating a balanced diet filled with fruits, vegetables and whole grains. Bla bla bla...
Last year, I set myself a goal to get in shape and return to downhill skiing. While I didn’t reach that goal, I have come to accept that I may just have a “broken” metabolism caused by years of yo-yo dieting (sometimes extreme), and a genetic tendency toward overweight. I also recently accepted the possibility that I’ve been victimized by media, culture and the processed food industry. For a really thoughtful look at this topic, I recommend the book, Body of Truth: How Science, History, and Culture Drive our Obsession with Weight — and What We Can Do About It by Harriett Brown.
So what’s a girl to do? I don’t really know. I suppose blogging helps, but it’s not a solution. If I find one, I’ll be sure to let you know.