First, thank you guys so much for all your encouraging words. Just when I least expect it, you surprise me with a note from your hearts. You make me smile.
You also make me know that weight loss success is possible. I mean, I know it’s possible in the grander sense of things, but on my small platform in the world, it’s been such an elusive goal. But your encouragement lets me know that I can do it.
I was talking to my husband the other day and he said something that got me thinking. I was talking about how I’ve gained back about 40 pounds since I left Weight Watchers last September and how for the last couple of years that I was a member (and mind you, I never missed one meeting in that 4.5 years), I kept fluctuating between 160 and 180, but I never could make it back down to my all time low of 158. I said that I always seemed to make it back to 170 but I couldn’t stay below 170 for very long. Then he said: ‘if you had made that your goal from the beginning (170), I know you would have reached goal and probably lost even more’.
I had to stop and think about that statement for a while. Then I started thinking back.
When I first started Weight Watchers (almost 5 years ago to the day: 5/12/07–I only remember that date because it was my daughter’s 18th birthday), they presented me with a weight chart. It showed the “healthy weight” range according to my height. I didn’t think anything of it at the time, I just punched in my height and it told me my ideal weight was between 124 and 155. So, I set my sites on 155.
Three years later, again, never missing a meeting, I had FINALLY lost 100 lbs. But that only brought me to 165. It wasn’t long before I’d gained 10 pounds back. And then another 10 pounds. It wasn’t straight up hill, there were gains and losses and gains and losses, but the overall arrow on my weight loss chart was pointed in the upward momentum.
Another year later, I was finally able to make it back down to my 100 pounds lost again. I was determined then more than ever that I could actually make it to my ultimate goal of 155. I was on a roll. And I was for a short while, I was able to make all the way down to 158.5. But then I went on vacation and gained 8 pounds. From there, it was all I could do to maintain my weight. And I didn’t. I very slowly, two-tenths of a pound at a time, meandered my weigh back up to 165, then 175, until finally a year later I was up to 183.
That’s when I stopped going to Weight Watchers. It wasn’t that I thought Weight Watchers was doing me wrong or not helping me lose weight. I still to this day think that Weight Watchers is the best weight loss plan out there on the market today.
But getting back to what my husband said. Say I walked into Weight Watchers in May of 2007 and I said, I’d like for my goal to be 170. (I won’t dwell on the fact that they would require a note from my doctor saying that the higher weight was my doctor-approved goal weight.) I would have made goal within 2 years–about 3 years before I actually quit Weight Watchers. And those 3 years were torture. I had to stop and think about how different things would have been if my goal had been 170.
I remember what it felt like to be at 170. I was so comfortable in my skin. I truly felt skinny. Sure, I still had tons of cellulite and flabs flapping from every limb, but overall, I truly felt happy. I felt sexy. I felt attractive. But most importantly I felt happy with my body.
AND, chances are, I would have kept trying to lose more weight once I made my goal. I’m sure, for a period of time, I would have stayed at 170, maybe even for years, but at some point, I’m sure I would have tried to make it down to a lower weight.
But all that aside, what my husband said really made sense to me. So I’m taking a new step in a different direction. My goal is no longer to fit into the numbers on the chart of “healthy weight” or to see a certain number on the scales. Now, my goal is to lose enough weight until I feel comfortable in my skin again (and by comfortable, I don’t mean complacent or “just satisfied”, I mean being able to sit with something in my lap and it not toppling over my knees, or being able to sit in a pair of blue jeans for more than an hour without my gut aching from the pinching of the waste band, or to be able to fold my arms on my stomach, not my chest, etc. Those types of comfortable things.). To look in the mirror and be happy with what I see again.
My goal is not a number any more, my goal is…
My goal is my happiness.
I think that’s an achievable goal, don’t you?