Wednesday, August 3, 2016

Learn to make peace with your body - Preamble

This blog has traditionally been about belly dance. I've had many thoughts lately for entries that may not quite fit exactly for belly dance but they do sort of in a way so, while I have contemplated creating a different blog for these, since it's actually titled "Celeste's Musings", it fits to put them here.

I've been battling a lot of body image issues for a while now and this will be the topic of a series of posts as well as other things that sprang to mind in the midst of contemplating all that.

A lot of people are aware that, back in 2011, I decided to embark on a weight loss journey, using the Weight Watchers plan. It worked really well for me. While there were some set backs and it did take well over a year, I lost 50 lbs and was happy to have a much slimmer body.

And then I became a statistics (aren't we all?)... the one about most people who lose weight gain some if not all of it back.

Four years later, I've indeed gained back quite a bit of weight. Well, actually, technically all the weight back, only I'm slimmer than when I started because I did put on some muscles over the years (thankfully). They do say at Weight Watchers that keeping the weight off is one of the hardest things to do and it sure proved to be true for me.

There really was a succession of events that lead to this result. I divorced my husband and, while I was the one who left, it did affect me a lot and I had a lot of grieving to do and it sort of sent my metabolism in high gear and I could nearly eat anything I wanted and was maintaining my weight. Unfortunately, that lead to developing some bad habits. And then I closed my dance studio, which meant that I was suddenly way more sedentary than I had been in many years. And I got into the nesting/happy period of a relationship so we really were very sedentary (Netflix and... ice cream and pizza). I rationally understood what happened and that I should be compassionate towards myself in general but I often couldn't reach for that compassion.

While all this was happening, I did go off the Weight Watchers program and then went back to it (on top of having rekindled lifting weights a while before), determined that if I could do it once, I could do it again. However, I didn't see much results and then had to put things a bit on hold as I was dealing with the stress and overwhelming nature of making the big life changes of quitting my long-time job and moving to a new city. The Weight Watchers program changed yet again (groan) last November and I had a bad meeting where the leader pissed me off and I went off the program again last December.

I am generally so much happier in my life, being in a healthy relationship, having moved to a city that I absolutely love, having a job in a company where I am more valued... but my weight but even more so my body image issues associated with my weight have tainted that happy picture. I can't help to feel like a failure, like I let myself down. I'm even ashamed. I'm not saying these things to get reassurances but to give an idea of where my emotions are.

So I knew that I had to do something about it. And the answer was more about my headspace, emotions, and self confidence than about dieting and exercising to get my body back.

More to come...

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