A walk down digital memory lane resurfaced something I didn't expect: my diet days.
Last night I was taking a walk down digital memory lane. I found lots of old articles and links of my first business, some press around it, and I was feeling very proud of myself for daring to make my voice heard in the world.
As I scrolled deeper, clicking with enthusiasm, wondering "what will I remember next!" I found something I didn't expect: my old weight loss blog from about five years ago.
Like so many women when they diet, it's a rite of passage to document it. The title of the blog was "Soul Weight" - how fitting for I used to feel like my weight was tugging on my soul. When I peeked through the many posts, the thought of me back into my diet-driven days flooded in. I saw images with captions like "DOWN 5LBS!" with my body looking, honestly, more svelte than it does today.
I saw how much I kept repeating "This time is it!" the battle-cry of so many weight loss attempts. I triggered myself - I pushed my old weight loss buttons. I thought "Was I better off then? Smaller? I think I look prettier. Did I just give up?" And I started to cry, zapped right back into the feelings of helplessness.
I kept reading, looking at images, feeling an odd sinking feeling that all my work for the past few years on learning and teaching body acceptance didn't matter - that at the end of the day, I was just a fat girl trying to prove to the world "Hey, I'm doing the best I can!"
I was shocked at how simple it was to feel like that again...
But then I found something else emerge I didn't expect to see: the seeds of More To Love. In one post I wrote:
If each day I’m operating under the principal of kindness and love towards myself, does the scale's number really matter? It’s still a challenge to fully adopt that attitude, given the pressure culturally to be “thin.” But I’m a living model that HEALTHY at ANY SIZE is valuable and powerful.
When I saw this line, I wept. I had no idea that even back then, when I was still believing purposeful weight loss was my mission, that some part of me was trying to create another way. This was before I even knew about body acceptance as a practice, before Health At Every Size, before the body-love community.
Before all of you.
Last night, I had a really hard time sleeping. I felt emotional, sad, hopeful, tired, worried, scared, resilient - all in one. I haven't felt that unsettled in honestly, years. It was weird.
I put a lot of pressure on myself to find out the truth to things, to my body, on how to teach body-acceptance. I forgot that my own story was not some shiny victory where I woke up one day, all cured of hating body and myself for it.
I don't have some wise ending for you - maybe that's the point. Some things don't nicely clean up, they are messy and confusing.
This is how I feel right now.