I knew I was going to get fat. All of the women in my family are fat. It was genetic destiny. It was fate. It was the dynastic plan. Or was it a self-fulfilling prophecy?
I knew so absolutely that I was going to become overweight that before I would marry him, I made my husband promise to love and desire me no matter what, “even when I get fat.” For the record, he has been true to his word for 19 1/2 years.
But I was not showing love for myself.
I ate without thinking. I ate without hunger. I ate because I was tired, nervous, sad, or scared. I ate past the point of satiety, fullness, and comfort. And in the short term, eating made me feel better, or at least numbed me a bit.
It took me a long time to accept that what worked for me in the past would not work with my current lifestyle. I could not simply increase my activity. I did not have the time or desire to walk and bike everywhere with children strapped to my body. And when I tried, it always resulted in crazy hunger, which led to overcompensating with more food than I actually needed.
I had to be willing to eat less overall to reach a healthy weight and then to be willing to eat at maintenance to, well, maintain that weight.
All I did for the first couple of weeks was jot down everything I ate on a piece of paper. I didn’t try to change what or how much I ate, but in a kind of observer effect, my behavior modified in response to being recorded. I made lower calorie choices and lost a little weight.
Honestly? I felt terrible. I was cold, I was hungry, and I couldn’t concentrate on anything. I got shaky. All I could think about was food. I was probably eating too few calories but I wasn’t counting calories so I didn’t know that.
Part 4 coming soon.