So, as many of you know, I am a member of the Curious Professors’ Bat Fit Brigade. For those who don’t know what that is, the short of it is that the Professor wished to lose 40 lbs by her 40th birthday. It started as her personal quest, yet resonated throughout her friends and acquaintances across the internet. Before too long, we had a merry band of us all supporting and cheering each other on, and a forum to go to for support when blog posts were not enough. Oh, and we are all fairly Goth, so: bats. And, we are ALL incredibly adorable so: bats.
Many of my fellows had the same goal in mind—lose X by Y. But, some of us had to get a little more complex (the Professor included) and throw in behind COMPLETE health which included a whole lot more than just a trimmer figure.
I found the entire HAES (health at every size) community on accident. In fact, I found it through someone snarking about delusional fat people thinking they were happy. I clicked through due to morbid curiosity and did find happy fat people. I also found science. I found an abandonment of self-flagellation. It was intriguing.
After months of lurking and reading, I decided to give it a shot. Fuck it, I had tried everything else to get “healthy” (read: thin) why not give this a swing? Incidentally, it was right around then when Golda Poretsky, an intuitive eating and body image coach, gave her Ted Talk. If you have not seen it, please click the link and watch. It is full of information that may or may not relate to you, and it is a genuinely well thought out talk.
I have been intuitively eating for about six months now and, despite the horrified gasps of my friends about how I am going to pork up further, there has been little fluctuation. In fact, what fluctuation there has been has been with the ebb and flow of me being all menstrual and shit, so that is probably just normal signs of a body doing what it does. Who knows what will happen when I feel comfortable enough to go for long walks and hikes again?
There is more food in my house, because I like having choices beyond my previous “which lean cuisine shall I eat tonight?” and I am cooking more than I have in years. I don’t buy any “diet” food, with the exception of Diet Coke because my love for that shit is not unlike a fucking bonfire. Seriously, that stuff is delicious and makes me happy.
My hair is shiny, my nails are growing, and I just FEEL good. I have a ton of energy and am moving around because I enjoy it—not because I am chained to a treadmill for so many minutes as some sort of punishment for daring to take up too much space. I would not trade this feeling for anything. I am redoing rooms of the Hovel and carting the injured Sacco around everywhere, and doing twice the chores with less fatigue.
For YEARS I have weight cycled and, even when the number on my jeans was lower, I still felt like complete shit physically. Every second of my climb up Mt. Baker and back was pure fucking hell during my after college weight loss campaign. I should have been enjoying the view—instead, I pushed myself to a 70 lb weight loss (5 of which I think was my hair), emotional dependence upon the person I was losing the weight for (hint: not me), and a complete lack of self confidence. I was doing everything “right”! I should have been the glowing person on the cover of a magazine! Instead, I was a wreck who bottomed out two years later when the combination of a new horrific relationship and unexplained weight gain (starvation mode in reality) flipped me into a suicide watch thousands of miles from home and family.
My new mantra is “Be good to me”. Meaning, I need to be good to myself. I move the way I want, and do it often because it is fun and enjoyable. I am working on eating what I crave and stopping when full—because that is my body telling me what it needs and when it is done. Still hungry? Keep eating. Full? Throw the rest away or save it for another day if it can be saved. Also, stop calling myself names. No more “worthless bitch” because I am not someone else’s idea of what we all should be.
Honestly, that last one is the hardest. I don’t think any of us are really very nice to ourselves in our heads. We should work on that.
I have done two coaching series with two different HAES coaches and look forward to utilizing the knowledge I have gained about me to carry me forward to better things. If this results in a trimmer figure, then that is as the Gods will it. My goal is now happiness and a fit mind with which to be a better person with. A person who can have a space in her mind for something besides counting calories or questioning if the food my body wants is the right one. A person stronger inside and out.
Oddly enough, my only anxiety with this whole deal is a feeling of “this is a space not for me”—because I am not big enough! Lest I leave you too full of saccharine sweet, let me be upfront and say that I have been told I have no voice in the “fat” community because I am not fat enough. I have been told I can’t use the hash tag “fatshion”. I don’t need to be in this online class because it is for fat girls only. Only I could find a place that makes me feel so good with its science and then be told I am not fat enough to tell someone how much I love it and think it works!
Fat or thin, girls can be cat-mean no matter the discussion we are in. It is astounding really. Too late people—I’m going to be in your club whether you like it or not. So nudge over and share that new recipe or hiking trail.