Sunday, October 27, 2013
I used to tell myself that my weight did not interfere with my family life.
I've always been fairly healthy, weight aside. Four picture perfect pregnancies -- not a high blood pressure reading among them. Gave me a bit of a shakeup when four immediate family members were diagnosed with diabetes within two years -- two of them my brothers, one younger and one older than me -- but I slid back into complacency. After all, they had always had worse health than I do -- high cholesterol, blood pressure, infections.
Mostly, I convinced myself that my weight -- or, more accurately, my SIZE -- wasn't impacting my kids. I have always been quite limber and it never fazed me to walk around with one 30 lb youngster strapped to my back and another on my hip. My normal-weight friends envied me my ability to get down on the floor with my two toddlers while 7 months pregnant. We were out and about all the time -- Nature Centers, the zoo, the park, the Children's Museum. I work full-time but until my older children fell in love with their Lego and complained mightily about being dragged on outings there was not a weekend that we stayed home.
Now I haven't gotten much larger since my first was born. In fact, I've gained and lost the same 40 lbs many times over the years. However, as my kids get older I just can't keep telling myself the same lies. Case in point: at the County Fair (where I have no trouble going alone with four boys under 6 and being out and about all day in the 100 degree beating sun, toting children and water and all the food we all need since almost nothing there is kosher) my oldest son wanted to go on a ride but he wanted me to accompany him. I told myself I couldn't have gone with him anyway, since the baby was too young for the ride. But in truth? My friend could have watched my baby while I had fun with my older son. We saw an ad for a really cool adventure playground with a ropes course my son would love. I told my husband he would have to take him because at my size it wouldn't be safe.
But even day to day. My fitness wasn't a problem since I could easily outrun my 1 year old. I can still outrun my 7 year old, but not easily -- and not if the race were over any sort of distance.
About two years ago, I gave birth to my fourth son, weighing seventy pounds or so less than I had just a few months before getting pregnant with him. In the intervening two years, I regained forty five of those pounds, lost forty back, and gained back those forty, and, over the last few weeks, dropped back another 15. So I am roughly ten pounds more than I was when I got pregnant, roughly 35 lbs less than my highest non-pregnant weight. I am sick of this roller-coaster.
I rarely travel. One year ago I flew to a firm conference. That was smack in the middle of when I was regaining the first 45 lbs. I wasn't weighing myself, so I don't KNOW what I weighed, but I can guess it was at least 10 lbs less than now just because of the clothing. On that flight I promised myself I would not again fly obese -- I would be smaller the next time I flew. But you know what actually got me going again a few weeks ago? The realization that I was going to have to fly again and that it would be unbearable at my higher weight. So much for promises to myself!