I am putting my 5k recap on hold for another day. Why you may ask? Simple, because I have spent the last day silently (or not so silently if you spoke to me over the phone or at the gym) stewing over all the negative body images in the #PriorFatPack post race.
I happily uploaded blurry out of focus photos to our tiny Facebook group late at night, and tagged a few of them, not all of them. I smiled as I looked at the photos of all the things I missed as I slowly made my way around Lake Como on my first 5k. I laughed as I looked at the pictures from the potluck, and of the massive amount of food.
I surfed through blogs of recaps, that touched my heart so deeply. Knowing that I am considered a friend to so many. Reading that other people felt welcomed by my hugs and smiles. Seeing that the hard work that Sabrina and I put into organizing things was so worth it. I was proud. I was proud of the #PriorFatPack.
Then it started… I noticed people untagging themselves from Facebook photos. Fair enough, I have had a photo or two where my smile wasn’t great, or I looked not quite my best. I can understand that. Then I noticed a slide in the feeling of happiness that I had. I knew deep down why people had untagged themselves. I had been in that dark place.
Oh My God… Am I Really That Big?
Now, when I was in the 375 pound range my friend Traci and I would be out, and I would see women larger than I, and I would get self conscious and ask, Oh my god? Am I as big as her? We have all done this, don’t pretend that you have never compared yourself to someone else. The answer was always NO! It didn’t matter, it is like asking your boyfriend if your hair looks nice. The answer is always going to be based on what you need to hear. I continued to get larger and when I got to be 430 pounds I no longer played that game because I knew the truth. I was HUGE. I never wanted my photo taken when I was 400+ pounds. I would make excuses, leave the room, heck I had even exposed a roll of film where I had been photographed in a bathing suit just to ensure no one would ever see that again. I get it!
What I have come to learn, and learned it on my way back down in the 375-range is that, there are people out there that want photo’s of you! That want memories with you. Yes okay you are the size you are. However, when your child looks up at you they will not see the mom that ate the box of girl scout cookies, he sees the mom who has the big strong arms to hold him and the big legs that chase them. When your husband or wife looks at you they do not see the big blob of fat that we have all felt like. They see the soft hands that they want to hold and the soft tummy to kiss!
We live our lives and we need to be present in them! We need those reminders. We are all on a journey here, and within the #PriorFatPack we come in all shapes and sizes. We have people who are at or nearly at goal weight and people who are just starting out. We also have people who are struggling to find a balance with healthy living while losing weight. We cannot compare ourselves to each other! We are all individuals, and must be present in our lives. How many people in your life have you lost that you wish you had just one more photo of?
I want each of us to be proud as hell when we look at our 5k photos, and so what if you can see the fat on your thighs! So what if you have a weird look on your face!!! You did something AMAZING on Monday! You need to focus on the fact that you are changing things in your life. For every negative thing in the photo you must pick a positive thing about yourself! So stop tearing yourself down! We are the #PriorFatPack we are not the #PerfectionPack Seriously Celebrate your Victory!!!
I want every single one of you to give yourself a big hug and remember we all lapped every single person that stayed home in bed Monday morning. We all walked faster, ran farther and tried harder than SO MANY PEOPLE! Be proud of your accomplishments and take pride in yourself. Do not let the negativity seep into your world! Celebrate your accomplishments!!! C’mon! It isn’t everyday you get to have your photo with “Real Bread Winners” Seriously, give the girl who is trying to lose weight some bread… that’s just what I needed 😛 (I did have a tiny slice of it today, since I earned it. The rest will likely end up fed to the birdies. I just don’t do bread.