I’ve been in a rut. You know, one of those, “I’m sick and tired of being sick and tired,” kind of things. Only it’s more like, “I’m sick and tired of being sick and tired . . . and fat . . . and frumpy.” Yep, that sums it up better.
I guess my, “Oh, no, really?” moment came when I realized that my baby is a whole year old. He’s really much too old to blame for my “fat problem” now.
Yes, I have a “fat problem.” It’s not an “I need to lose a few pounds problem.” It’s not an “overweight problem.” Now, it’s not even a “Leave me alone, I just had a baby, problem.” It’s a “fat problem.”
I now weigh the most I’ve ever weighed in my lifetime – ever – even at 9 months pregnant. So, naturally, it makes sense that I feel fat.
Can a person FEEL fat? Absolutely! I know I do.
I feel angry that I’ve ever let myself get this so far out of shape. I feel sad that I can no longer do the physical activities that I once did. Most of all, I feel confused because being strong & in shape used to be one of the ways I defined myself.
I feel like Ralphie’s little brother on the Christmas Story. You know, the one who can hardly move because his mom dressed him in too many winter clothes. The difference is he can shed that bulky snowsuit and sweater to feel normal again. I can’t just peel off my excess layers of fat to move freely again. I feel trapped.
Combine all the above emotions, throw in a little self-pity and a low self-body image, and this is what I call “feeling fat.”
I guess it’s not even the “fat problem” that has me in such a rut. It’s the “frumpy problem.”
Let’s face it, I’m a stay-at-home mom. Sometimes I smell like spoiled milk. Sometimes I have the occasional sticky jelly fingerprints on my pants. I don’t always have to leave the house, so why dress up?
That’s what I’ve been asking myself lately. Why dress up?
My problem is not that I don’t dress up. It’s that I don’t get dressed properly, at all. My idea of getting dressed for the day is pulling my hair back into a messy bun, and throwing on a comfortable pair of workout pants or jeans, a t-shirt, and an oversized hoodie.
The oversized hoodie is my futile attempt to cover up all my excess fat. I try not to leave home without it. It’s like my security blanket. The problem is summer is coming & I’ll look pretty stupid wearing a hoodie in 80 degree weather, especially in Montana. We tend to break out the shorts and tank tops when the thermometer reaches 55 degrees.
Every morning I have a battle with my closet. It reminds me of my ever expanding waistline. I tell it to hush. Like my children, it doesn’t always listen to me.
Most of my clothing is too small to wear and the rest I just don’t really like to wear. I could buy new clothing if my wallet was a little bigger, but even then I hate shopping for clothes.
I have spent way too much time trying on way too many clothes in way too many stores just to come home with NOTHING. I suppose if I had a personal stylist it would be fun, but even then I would probably question her sanity.
I used to secretly wish –before the show was canceled – that someone would nominate me for that What Not to Wear show. I would love the trip to New York City and the money to go shopping, but most of all I would really like someone to teach me how to dress.
Of course, there is always the dilemma that I don’t really want to buy new clothes because I have a few dress sizes I would like to lose. I don’t want to buy new clothes and then not fit in them a few months from now. Honestly, that has never happened, so I don’t think it should be an issue. Yet, I still tell myself this every time I go clothing shopping.
I brush my teeth, wash my face, and use deodorant. That’s the extent of my beauty regimen.
I almost never wear makeup. Even when I do, I try to wear minimal makeup. I call it going for that natural look. At any rate, makeup does cover up my uneven skin tone and adult acne. Plus, even a small amount of mascara and brow liner does wonders for my almost invisible lashes and eyebrows.
I have contacts but almost always wear my glasses. Not that there is anything wrong with glasses, but I think I look much better without them. Personally, if I had to choose my best feature – which I must admit is difficult – I would choose my eyes.
Why then do I hide them behind glasses? Good question. I don’t really know. I guess the 45 seconds it takes to put in my contacts is too much time for this busy mommy? Um, no.
This is where the feeling foolish part comes in. I know I need to lose weight. I know I need to take better care of myself. Why, then, do I continue to be lazy when it comes time to take care of me?
I take care of my children. I take care of my husband. Why don’t I take care of me?
I wish I could answer that question. Whatever excuses I try to come up with just sound silly.
I deserve to feel good about myself. I deserve to spend that extra 20 minutes in the bathroom taking care of me. I deserve to have nice clothes that actually fit me. I deserve to feel good in my own skin.
My husband gets frustrated at me because I am always complaining about my weight. He gets angry when I put myself down.
He doesn’t complain when I don’t shave my legs. He has never mentioned all the pounds that have seemed to just creep up on me over the years. He tells me I look good without makeup. He thinks I am beautiful.
That should be good enough for me. And truly, it really is. I guess I just feel guilty that I don’t put in the effort to make myself look good, not just for me, but for him also. He deserves to have the best of me.
The truth is I’m not happy with the way I look, so I figure why try? I’m not my ideal weight. I don’t have flawless skin. I don’t have the facial features to knock your socks off. Not very many people do.
I just need to stop focusing on what’s wrong with my body. Just because I don’t have smooth silky hair doesn’t mean I can’t style it. Just because I don’t like my acne doesn’t mean it isn’t worth wearing makeup. Just because I am not my ideal weight doesn’t mean I can’t find flattering clothes that fit well.
So, I suppose I should pull myself out of my rut, take control of my appearance, and stop fussing over not looking perfect. I don’t need to be the perfect weight, have the perfect skin, have the perfect hair, or have the perfect nose to feel good about myself.
Feeling fat, frumpy, and foolish is a CHOICE. Like any emotion, I can choose to take control of my thoughts. I don’t need to feel this way. I can take pride in my appearance and the way I present myself to the world. And that’s what I think I’m going to do.
Watch out world, here I come! I just won’t be coming in a bikini.