Tuesday, July 31, 2012

What Am I Afraid Of?

I’ve been plagued by this nagging feeling for a couple of years now that I’m terrified of losing weight.  To people who’ve never had a weight problem, that sounds ridiculous.  But to those of us who have (and I have spoken to and read things written by other people to this end) it’s very much a reality.

So what is it about losing weight that I’m so afraid of?

That I’ll fail.  I’ve lost and gained and lost and gained all of my adult life.  Going back to 11 or 12 years of age, I remember trying to lose weight and going on one diet or another.  So why would this time be any different?  Since the weight came back on over the past 3 years, I’ve made attempts at losing again.  I’ve probably started somewhere in the vicinity of 50 times in the past 3 years to get back on the wagon.  The most I’ve lost is maybe 15 lbs, then I throw in the towel and gain it all back and then some.  I’ve done this before.  It was hard.  It took a long time.  Doing it again overwhelms me and is daunting.

The commitment.  Weight loss is a commitment.  It’s hard work.  It takes planning, it takes time, it takes patience.  It takes self-control:  that ability to step back mentally from that giant container of ice cream and say, “I think I’ll just have one small scoop right now, instead of the entire thing in one sitting.”  I’ve never been fully able to grasp the whole “lifestyle change” concept.  I understand it.  It makes sense.  It looks good on paper.  But putting it into practice, for me, has not been fruitful.  Yet.

I’ll lose my excuse for not living.  “I can’t do that.  I’m too fat.”  It’s the refrain that plays in my mind over and over again.  Like going to a special salon for a haircut.  I’m too fat to go there, so I don’t have to.  Trying a new bar?  Forget it.  I’m too fat.  Lounging by the pool.  Oh, hahaha, don’t be silly.  I can’t do that.  I’m too fat.  The list goes on.

People will see me.  This is the biggie.  This is the one that hits the bull’s eye.  I won’t be invisible anymore.  My fat is my shield.  It keeps people at bay.  It’s my excuse for not allowing anyone to get too close.  Most of this, I know, is in my head.  Such as this list of why fat is my shield from people:  It’s the reason my girlfriend will leave me, instead of leaving me for any other reason.  My fat keeps attackers away.  My fat keeps people from wanting to get to know me.  My fat keeps new friends from asking me to go places. 

There comes a point when you have to take a risk with all things in life.  If I fail, so what?  If people see me, that’s okay.  Living life is why I’m here.  I’m ready for a change in the way I do things with food and exercise.  In the grand scheme of things, there are far more valid reasons to be afraid.

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