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    BETHIEBOOPS   11,013
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On weird fears and not taking responsibility

Wednesday, July 04, 2012

I wasn't going to post anything today. I figured that this isn't THAT big of a deal.

But I decided that it is a set of baggage I've been carrying that I need to let go.

So here it is:

This week we moved offices. It involved lots of carrying, lifting, climbing, and walking. I knew I needed to wear pants instead of my staple skirt. Trouble was all my pants are too big. So I hiked them up, tied a belt around my waist and hoped for the best.

I wasn't hoping that my pants would stay up though. I was hoping no one would notice my shrinking body.

But they noticed. And they asked me my secret.

What I should have said (aka the Truth) : I eat well, I keep active, I make good choices. I eat clean and minimize my high GI carbohydrates. I eat zero processed foods, no chemicals or frankenfoods. I am also on medication to regulate my blood sugar. This has helped me lose 30 pounds.

What I actually said: Oh really? No I haven't. Oh, you insist? Well, I found out earlier in the year I was putting on weight because I am sick, and now I am on medication to make me feel better. Maybe that is why I seem thinner? But I think I've lost much weight. Maybe a little, but not much.

What is wrong with me? People can see that I am fat. They can see that I have lost a substantial amount of weight. I know I have lost weight, and I know that I have lost weight healthily. Yes, glucophage has regulated my PCOS symptoms, but I am losing because I am making good choices. If I took glucophage, but ate like crap, I would not be losing.

I'm further upset by my lie, because:

1. I am an honest person and don't make a habit of fibbing.

and

2. because it feels like I said, " I know I'm fat. I'm acknowledging that I am huge, and gross and not worthy of dieting and losing weight. After all we all know I can't actually lose weight by making good choices. Can I have your muffin? And a bar of chocolate? And that bag of chips you stashed in your desk"

I am terrified of my coworkers finding out I am on a "diet". First, because I am not on a diet. I have eaten well since August 2011, when I learned of my gigantic risk of Ovarian cancer. I changed my lifestyle before I lost weight. I only started losing pounds when I was diagnosed with PCOS and started Glucophage. Of course, I reduced my carbs since starting the medication, because when I eat too many high GI carbs I get crazy belly ache and throw up like I'm poisoned, but other than that I have maintained healthful mindful eating standards for almost a year.

Secondly, and most importantly, because I don't want to recognise that I am doing something about my size to the public. Strange, yes. But I would rather let them think I am perfectly confident as a large woman- which I am- rather than reveal a chink in my armour. Both are true, but I'd prefer to keep one a secret.

I am afraid to let them know that I know that I am fat.

In our new offices our eating area is communal. Before, I could sneak my snacks (shh! celery and carrots! Oranges! Cucumbers! Munch munch) but now it's all there out in the open for everyone to see, to mock, to inquire about.

It strikes a lady I work with odd that I love fruit and veggies. As if, by my very appearance, I should be force feeding myself cakes and ice cream and doughnuts. She didn't say anything about my size, just that she wouldn't have expected me to eat what I ate. I'm being sensitive, sure, but my feelings ached anyway.

I have a definite problem with eating in secret. Even healthy food. I hate eating in front of others. I know it's not healthy behaviour, but it's a habit I've carried since as long as I can remember.

And I don't know what to do with it. It's like today opened up a suitcase filled with memories and things, both good and bad, and now I've got to sit and sort through it. I've got to look at each one, acknowledging it for what it was, and deciding what to do with it.

So here I sit, under my blanket, my puppy at my side asking, "Do I keep this one? Will it help me reach my goals? Does this make up who I am? Can I throw this away?" And shucks, it's hard to toss away these things I've been carrying for much too long.











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  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

ALBATROSS925 7/9/2012 2:25AM

    I'm so sad I missed this blog post when you first posted it! I have PCOS too and it is a beast to deal with, even with all the healthy eating in the world and exercise.

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JOYANN84 7/7/2012 10:28AM

    Congrats on your success!! You are this journey for yourself to become healthier! Don't let the opinions or even snide looks of others deter you from your goals!!! Your doing all of the right things and maybe in time you will be able to share you journey with your coworkers; maybe not. You've accomplished so much and you can really proud about that!! emoticon

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MRSKATEDUVALL 7/6/2012 6:24PM

    I am very proud of you, to sift through the junk, to acknowledge and blog it. As someone said, losing the baggage around the weight is the harder part. Weight loss is about calories in/ calories out, but a healthy journey is about so much more.

I did the reverse, bragged about my healthy eating, serving only "good food" and then binged like a crazy person when everyone went home. haven't figured it out yet, but it was yesterday and today is a new day.

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PICKYNICKI 7/6/2012 5:49PM

    You are amazing!! Remember that. Who cares what they think, I mean honestly. I know everyone says that, but you would be doing this for yourself regardless. Their opinion does not have any bearing on what size they think you are or what size you think you are. The strength comes in being able to show them the amazing things that you are doing for yourself. You may feel that unspoken criticism from them and feel that you both "know" you are fat... here is something for you to "chew" on mentally. If you perceive that they feel this way, wouldn't you rather they view you as someone who is willing to fight and take charge of her life, or someone who is oblivious to her size and the fact that she is losing? No criticism here, no ill feelings either. Just a little perspective on how to look at the situation in a way that might help you deal with this better the next time and may help the confidence that you should have shine. Coming from a long time obese woman, it still pains me to see that you are stifling your hard work. You should be proud of it. So what if you are still larger than you want to be, it isn't going to be that way for long right? You are entitled to be proud of what you have done so far, use that excitement and accomplishment as motivation. Blind them with the beauty of your strength!
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ANGELIQUE271 7/6/2012 4:43PM

    *sigh* emoticon

I can relate to this somewhat, but with me it is working out in front of people - especially my husband.

Part of me feels like if he sees me flailing around, out of breath, exhausted, getting my butt kicked by doing a workout video, then I don't feel "strong" anymore. I know it isn't the same, but that is what I thought of when I read this.

It is pretty silly though, because I throw my weight around without shame. I know that there is no way I can hide that I am over 300 lbs. That took time, but I learned to take the anxiety I felt around others and just dismiss it.

99% of the time I don't let people's negative thoughts or comments bother me because I have learned not to care what people think of me. There are other areas where I am vulnerable, but we all are like that.

I guess my point is, please TRY to step out of your comfort zone and eat 2 or 3 snacks a week in front of others. Think of every uncomfortable situation as a challenge, and the prize is strengthening your will power and self worth. You DESERVE to be comfortable in your own skin.

The last part (and then I will stop rambling, I promise) has to do with this statement:

"But I would rather let them think I am perfectly confident as a large woman- which I am- rather than reveal a chink in my armour."

That statement is a contradiction. The fact that there IS a "chink" in the armor you wear - means you are not perfectly confident - AND THAT IS OK! You are not supposed to be perfect at anything! None of us are!

I think you might really be more afraid of admitting you are not 100% confident, than having others see it. Once you figure out what the real problem is, you can start to work on it. You can do this! You are so strong, but you don't have to be strong all the time. Don't shield yourself from opportunities to grow, to build up your self worth and self esteem, image, and allow yourself to love yourself FOR WHAT YOU ARE DOING to take care of youself! You are doing this for YOU! emoticon

If you work on being comfortable around your co-workers and dismissing their looks, comments, etc - I promise to work on being so stubborn about working out in front of my hubby to the point that sometimes I miss workouts or lose sleep just to stay up late and fit a workout in. We can support each other. emoticon

Hope your day gets better! :)

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MISHAMW 7/6/2012 4:19PM

    I feel the same way! I don't like to acknowledge that I am losing weight, I just kinda want people to see the before and after, not the "durning."

It's also hard to talk to people about why you can't eat like them and lose weight! PCOS is a hard things to live with especially if you have IR as well. Normal people can eat healthy and exercise and lose the weight super quick, but we have eat healthier and exercise more in order see results.

I tell people that the reason why I am losing weight is because I am on Metformin which helps control my blood sugar, which causes me to gain weight, or not lose it. I don't tell people either that I am eating better or exercising more than I did. But then again, I really don't know why either. Probably because I also don't want people to know that being fat isn't really my fault at all. But it's because I am sick....

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BOBCATGIRL76 7/6/2012 4:05PM

    I sometimes hate telling people I'm on a diet as well. I feel so stupid saying I've made a lifestyle change but when they offer me food I used to gobble down or want to go out and drink on the town, I have to turn them down. I also get self conscious when I run in public, because I'm sure I'm jiggling or look ridiculous at my weight, but all I can think of is what are people going to judge me for? For actually doing something about my weight? For exercising? Don't be ashamed that you are doing something for you! It's awesome!

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RADIOTIKSPARK1 7/6/2012 2:33PM

    "I am afraid to let them know that I know that I am fat. "

EXACTLY.

Okay, there is so much I could type. I (and it seems like a lot of responders) know just how you feel. Short story time: when I was living in Ecuador I was a bit sad and lonely most of the time and I decided to "go on a diet" (sigh) and ended up working really really hard, obsessing about it 24/7 but not really changing much about my life. I lost weight and a women that I hadn't seen in a while noticed and complimented me...she asked me how I did it. She wanted tips. Me, in my terrible Spanish, said something along the lines of what you said: "Oh...you think so? I don't think so. Maybe a little but it is because I moved house and have to walk a little bit more each day". Total crap, I was killing myself "dieting" and I couldn't tell her for some reason. Yes that diet totally failed after maybe a month.

This time is different on so many levels (the biggest one being that it has actually worked!!)

Last December I had a book out from the library called The End of Overeating (highly recommend it, it is by the former head of the FDA). I (like usual) was hesitant to read it on the subway on the way to work and found myself covering it up. Suddenly I realized that for some stupid reason I didn't want the subway strangers to, like you said, know that I knew that I was overweight. Like somehow I was hiding it, but a book on proper eating would make a big arrow point at me in flashing lights. Something clicked in my head and I said "NOT THIS TIME". I whipped out the book and I started reading it openly in public. I have never, ever done anything like that before. I am a confident person but that was my sensitive spot. The only way to harden up that sensitive spot is to expose it.

Really, I am now open an honest about this with everyone. Anyone who asks, anyone talking about food, anyone talking about dieting, anyone. I am not letting myself have that secret anymore. That is part of the wall that I built up and then depended on. No way jose.

Two weeks ago I got the best compliment ever. I told one of my new co-workers (who I might add is a good lookin' fella) how I had been working hard to eat well and have seen a lot of result. This came up in a conversation about me potentially joining a rugby team or learning to box heh. I told him I had lost 15% of my starting bodyweight and was not "overweight" for the first time since before puberty. He told me that he was surprised, that he couldn't imagine me overweight.

And that is what you want to work up to: tell everyone what you are doing and why if it comes up. Be honest and open. Don't depend on your old crutches. Finally, you will get to a point where no one can remember the overweight you and the new people you meet will have no image of you overweight. You are so on your way to getting there!

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KAYLAHEGINGER 7/6/2012 1:51AM

    30 lbs down is awesome and all you and nobody can take that away from you

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WINDSONG26 7/5/2012 10:16PM

    Honestly, I have no advice to give on that one. I think in time, though, you'll get over your fears and it'll be okay. The past baggage is much, MUCH harder to get rid of than the weight.

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STEPH-KNEE 7/5/2012 9:11AM

    I am so sorry you feel that way but I am so proud of you for recognizing it and that is the first step to dealing with it. I try and hide my healthy food from the people I work with because they are vultures and will try and force feed me the second they feel I'm losing weight. Yes, I work with a bunch of nutbags. ;) I think another part of me (and not saying this is relevant to you at all) but I feel like if they know, and then I fail it's more embarrassing that way. If they don't know, I fail and stay fat, no one cares.

But I do hope one day you will be able to "own" your weight loss in front of others and just say you are eating healthy and working out. Maybe you don't have to tell them all the details (if you don't want to), but I just hope you can be proud of your awesomeness in front of others when the time is right. :D

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PRAIRIECROCUS 7/4/2012 9:14PM

    emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon
All the best, on your SparkPeople journey !
Be proud of your accomplishment !

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HABROWN 7/4/2012 4:03PM

    Darlin' seems like a whirlwind of emotions that hit all at once. Can't say that I totally understand cause we are two different people, but I have had similar situations. I believe my not telling folks about healthy lifestyle changes has more to do with my being afraid that I won't stick it out and then everyone will know that I failed.

I also don't like to eat in front of others whether unhealthy or healthy. I have these voices in my head the whisper the crap people must be thinking while watching me eat. If it is unhealthy then they are talking crap about the fact that how unhealthy I eat is how I ended up do big and if I am eating healthy then they are talking crap about how I am trying to lose weight and that I won't make it.

I call this my fat girl mentality. Having been big all my life has changed my way of thinking though I acknowledge that even relatively thin folks probably have some of these concerns too, but for me it is something that I have to work through and move forward with this journey even when I have doubts.

Keep it moving forward no matter the hurdles. You can overcome them! emoticon

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CAMAEL100 7/4/2012 4:01PM

    I relate!! I hate people telling me I have lost weight. It feels like a criticism of how I was or something. But you are doing very well so keep it up.

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SOCAL_SPARKSTER 7/4/2012 3:45PM

    I know what you mean, I also have PCOS....me being younger and 2 years into marriage I get asked all the time, when you having a baby??? And I just sit there and say "i dont know, not anytime soon". because I dont want to say, "well when i lose enough weight, and will be normal again." I used to feel embarassed to eat at work. I felt as if i was always being watched. I work in a call center and there are hundreds of people around.

the saying i go by is: "it is what it is". I know I am overweight and i know that i need to lose weight, and i know other people know what i look like because anyone with working eyes can see me., and they know i am overweight. So putting everything to the side, I had to stop caring anfd focusing on what people "might" be thinking of me, because really, they did not really care. Although you will come across others that do, and question you.

I was embarassed to bring healthy foods to work. because i thought in the past; well, this is what people would expect i eat.... but really it doesnt matter.
This is all about you,what you want, and your health. you need to just focus on yourself and do what you need to do to reach your goals. Take pride in the fact that your are making healthy choices in order to reach your goals. Take pride in the fact you lost so much weight, and that people can notice, because that is wonderful! It means youre doing everything right!

Good Luck to you, and I hope you keep your chin up, and continue to move forward, because you have come a long way already !

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SCARJOWANNABE 7/4/2012 3:08PM

    Keep your chin up! When or if you feel comfortable, I'm sure your co-workers will admire you for taking such serious and courageous actions to change your health for the better!

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GENERALRED 7/4/2012 3:07PM

    I know the feeling! I also have PCOS and I've gone so far as to lie about how I've lost the weight to make people feel bad about asking. Some of them being: new coke addiction, bulimia, I gave up eating, or I've joined the witness protection and they paid for liposuction. Since I've started spark though I've made a huge effort to make sure people know about it. Glad to know I'm not alone and Good luck!!

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DISP715 7/4/2012 3:05PM

    Wow! Awesome realizations and self discovery. You should really be proud of yourself. Looking honestly at ourselves is the hardest part of this journey. There is a great book that you might find interesting. It is called "The 10 Questions" by Debbie Ford. It addresses so many of the things you talk about. In order to move forward we need to drop the heavy load we carry. Keep a vision, some place you want to be and let nothing get in your way. You are worthy and you deserve health. Eat those carrots with pride and be the amazing warrior women that you are! HUGS!!!

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JAOTTO 7/4/2012 3:05PM

  Happy 4th of July.

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