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I stood there completely naked, reached back, and pulled the ponytail holder out of my hair. Nothing was going to impact this. I thought about taking off my wedding ring, but finally decided I was being ridiculous. Then I stepped on the scale.


The digital display was working, thinking, processing the weight of me on a twelve by twelve square. It took only seconds for the scale to measure me, to define me.

Standing there in the early morning, naked and cold, I couldn’t help but wonder: Is this who I am? Am I a number? Am I too much? Am I a failure?

Weight loss is not a new subject to me. I’ve been in this place far too long. I know how to spout the socially-acceptable jargon.

It’s about health, not weight.

It’s not a diet, it’s a lifestyle.

Listen to your body, it will tell you what it needs.

I’m not so sure about that last one actually. My body often tells me it needs cookies, and chocolate. I know, I know, a want is different than a need. Thanks, Mom. But some days, I think the line is pretty thin.

As much as we want to talk our way around the subject, weight is an issue. There are health implications, lifestyle implications, and family implications. Those are all real and true, but what if that matters less than we think?

That morning, as I made my way into the shower to warm up, I thought about the number that glared up at me. I thought about how much lower it should be and all I had to do to get it there. The truth is, we know what we need to do, we just lack the discipline to do it. At least I do.

But how would my life change?

If I lost the weight I could buy nicer clothes. I could feel better about myself. I could do more. I could be healthy. I could be happy.

But what was stopping me from doing those things right now?

I could buy nice clothes now. I could choose to feel better about myself. I could do the things I dream of doing. I could live healthy at 180 pounds. I could be happy now. If I never lose another pound I can still choose to live the life I want to live.

We could spout the “life is too short” mantra and self-help our way through a set of steps, but the truth is we don’t need to work that hard. There is no magic number on a scale that will change who a person is. The sooner we come to terms with who we are, the sooner we can get on with living our lives.

If I never lose a pound

I can still hug my kids,

I can jump in the water,

I can wear a red dress.

 

If I never lose a pound

I can scandalously kiss my husband,

I can order dessert,

I can  go for a walk outside because I want to.

 

If I never lose a pound

I can like who I am,

I can live a beautiful life,

I can be happy.

This sounds so easy in black and white on a screen, but I know living it out is another story. The good news is you don’t need to do it all at once. Do one thing today. Pick a way to live happy today at whatever weight you are.

Will I continue to work on losing weight? Yes, because I know it’s good for me. However, I’m done letting weight define me and the life I live. We get one shot here on this big, beautiful Earth. One shot to be happy, love deeply, and live a beautiful life. Start today.

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