Hows it going? How are you? How are your lives?
Mine trickles along as ever it does. Like many people living in the first world in this day and age, I have something of a fixation with losing weight. And like many people, my goal is that magic 10 kilos which seems so tantalisingly close yet so unobtainable.
My reasons for wanting to lose weight are impeccably shallow. In short, I wish to be thinner. Yes, I subscribe to the widespread delusion that somehow if where were less of me it will make me happier, more desirable, more successful, and a generally better person. And to be fair there’s something to that theory, as feeling better about how I look should, logically, make me feel more confident and go about my actions in a more assertive manner. Therefore the things I want will become the things I have, and therefore, conclusively, I ought to be happier.
My personal reasons for wanting to lose weight started off as the very best of intentions. I had recently discovered I loved bushwalking, but in order to enjoy it more and be better at it, I had to be fitter. My diet and exercise became focused on building up muscle and endurance, and low and behold, I lost seven kilos in six months and completed a three day hike through the mountains. Never in my life had I felt better about myself.
I enjoyed the exercise but the diet became harder to maintain on moving out of home, and so since February my weight has remained exactly the same.
The interesting this is that while I was exercising and being healthy for the sake of my health, losing weight was brainless, gaining confidence was easy, and it was all kind of simple and nice. But recently, my motivations have undergone a change, and suddenly losing weight has reverted back to what it was in high school: struggling along, hating myself and feeling like crap. And low and behold, the desire to my thin has again become this incredibly annoying time consuming activity that’s forever out of my reach.
These days, I want to lose weight because I want tattoos and feel embarrassed about the amount of wobble in my body. There’s a guy I’ve got my eye on who I feel embarrassed about liking and somewhat unworthy of pursuing, because I feel so unattractive i’m sure making any kind of move would be seen like an enormous joke.
I don’t like being in this place. It’s debilitating, it’s depressing, and it’s not working.
The weird thing about wanting to be thinner is you catch yourself playing this “if only…” game. If only my neck looked like a normal neck, then I wouldn’t care about the rest. If only my stomach were flat. If only i didn’t feel ridiculous wearing skinny jeans. If only my arms didn’t puff out, so I wouldn’t feel obliged to wear cardigans all the time, even in the middle of summer, then I would be happy.
This kind of internal negotiation is stupid for a number of reasons, mostly because it’s time consuming and doesn’t achieve anything. As if you can somehow trick your body into a trade off, as if that’s the magical solution to all your problems.
The other thing you do when you want to lose weight and feel like crap about yourself is fixate on tomorrow. I’m going to start running again. Tomorrow. I’m going to only eat healthy foods. But it’s already 6pm so I’ll start tomorrow. I’m going to get up early and be productive. Starting tomorrow. And the longer you put off tomorrow, the further away it gets. Right, next week my new routine begins! No excuses. Oh but I have so much stuff to do. So the week after then, definitely the week after.
Women’s magazines get a lot of flack for showing unrealistically thin models and women airbrushed to unattainable perfection, but as a self proclaimed feminist, I actually don’t think there’s as awful as everyone makes out. Why? Because when you’re that desperate to be thinner for the sake of looks alone, you seek out those images regardless. My “fitspiration” board on pinterest (yes I have one of those. Shut up.) I recently realised is chock a block with pictures of beautiful, skinny women. Everything I want to be and strive towards, but lets face it, will never be able to achieve. Not through lack of wanting, but through lack of realism.
And it’s not even perfection you find yourself eyeing off jealously and comparing to yourself. You’re constantly comparing yourself to the people around you. Just yesterday I caught myself enviously studying my new housemates neck, thinking how slender and pretty it was and how mine wasn’t and how if I could have a neck like hers then surely the rest wouldn’t matter.
And the most ridiculous thing is looking at women who are the same size or bigger then yourself, but who are stunning, confident, and happy, and wishing you could look like them but still somehow concluding that you’re ugly and undesirable and the solution is to lose weight.
I remember reading an article when I was little about how many supermodels were very plain children, and wishing and hoping that the same would happen for me. But alas, I’m very much the ugly duckling who grew up to be an ugly duck.
So in not to many words, I’m feeling very undesirable at the moment. Sorry to whine about this, but it’s been on my mind recently and I want it off. I’m still determined to lose weight, and my goal is to have dropped the ten kilos before Christmas. I’ll keep you posted if I succeed. If not, assume I failed and am too embarrassed to talk about it.