Tentatively and with a bit of fear, I put my scale away on Tuesday morning. I weighed and then buried it in the linen closet where I meant for it to sit gathering dust until the end of January. I have been a faithful weigher since September 4, 2007, the day that I first stood on the Weight Watchers scales. 5 and a half years I have stood on the scale at least weekly but mostly daily. It’s a funny thing, that little digital number. It’s either the permission to feel happy or it’s a little blue glow at 5am that steals away your happiness, comfort or satisfaction, whether it deserves to or not. It’s justification for poor choices if the number shows up smaller than it ought to be and it’s punishment for not working hard enough, even when you’re giving it your all.
I have to admit that yesterday I had the urge to pull that scale out and step on it and see if the one (brutal) day so far in the year had yielded any lost weight. You see, I have exercised sporadically since last May. A month on, one off, a month on, two off, a week on and then a month long cold and then Christmas. And with Christmas December came chocolate. Alcohol. Grain free cookies coated in chocolate. Chicken wings. Alcohol. Chips. Rum balls. Alcohol. Zero exercise. You get me?
And yet through the entire month of December, I didn’t gain a pound. Yay scale! Thank you for telling me what was ultimately an enormous lie. Sure, my actual weight stayed the same. But the breadth of my thighs grew, muscle in my bum and arms turned soft, my belly turned from reasonably flat to reasonably fat. The scale is bullshit information. I say that knowing that for years it’s what drove me and for YEARS it’s what kept me at an acceptable weight. But………things changed, my diet changed, my body changed, my thought processes changed. And yet I stood on the same scale every day. I hung my heart and mood and self worth and success or failure on something that doesn’t even tell the real story.
I was very grateful to newly discover a tool that does tell the truth, the whole story, the complete works? It was me. All along. My eyes, my heart and my brain, they know. And when the scale isn’t ripping truth out of my hands every morning with its little glowing number, I can hear what’s happening and I can relate what is happening to what I’ve been doing, good or bad!
I really believe that this was the final step in completely committing to my current lifestyle. It’s been almost a year since I gave up grains and admittedly I think I always had one foot in my old life, just in case. One foot that wasn’t quite sure that this radical (it is radical if you compare it to the average diet) way of living and eating could work. I’m all in now though; tucking that scale into the closet was like closing the door on the past. Any label that used to let define me is closed in there with it; former fatty, “was in a car accident”, lazy, not athletic. They are all in there, locked away with the scale. And while my original intent was to get it out on January 31st and “see how I did”, my current intent is to never get it out again.
Happy Day Three! One of my favorite quotes to leave you with this morning: “There is no better way to combat weakness than with strength.”
In case you’re wondering about the muscle loss/weight gain, I’m not worried, it’s negligible in the grand scheme, it taught me a HUGE lesson that I needed to learn and I’ll have everything set back to rights in less than 45 days!
Many thanks to my dear friend, Tara, for blazing this trail months ago and putting the seed in my head. And many more thanks to her for her beaming, genuine happiness when I told her what I’d done, definite confirmation that where I’ve come to is a good place to be!