Along with being bipolar, I have the delightful benefit of having hypothyroidism, which means my thyroid doesn’t really work without taking synthetic hormones. The thyroid is the little gland in your throat that regulates metabolism, so this means that until age 21 when it was diagnosed, I literally had a metabolism that barely worked. I continually gained weight, and no dieting or exercise ever changed the steady climb. (And that lovely three-month stint of Depakote before my hospitalization? That fifty pounds is STILL sitting on my waist.) So between being on weight-positive medication and having no metabolism until my twenties, I was pretty much doomed to be heavy. My mother and sister are both size 6. I’m… a multiple of six. It pretty much gave that negative voice in my head that much more ammunition, as I was discriminated against for being heavy and treated poorly by my family, peers, and total strangers. It wasn’t until the past few months when I found out about the “Health At Every Size” movement that I realized I could be happy in my own skin. …Well, when my brain isn’t out to get me, that is.
Health At Every Size is amazing. We all know from practical experience that diets don’t work. Sure, the weight comes off, but it goes back on later, and often with a bit of then some tacked on. My goal is just to be healthy, and HAPPY, no matter what the scale says. I now don’t let them weigh me at the doctor’s office, and I do not weigh myself any other times, either. I am trying to practice eating when I’m hungry and stopping when I’m full, which seems simple but is actually a bit of a challenge for me, as I’m an emotional eater (which didn’t help my overall waistline, let me tell you!)
Reading the book “Fat!So?” helped, too. “Life’s too short for celery sticks,” it says, and I believe it. I just want to be happy, in those times that I *can* be happy because the depression has abated and my mind is no longer trying to tear itself to pieces. I want to be able to live my life as I see fit and not have to feel guilty because I ordered whatever the hell I wanted at a restaurant and do not live on a perpetual diet. I have enough struggles in my life with my wacky brain chemistry, I don’t need to buy into the whole Death!fats nonsense. (Death!fat stolen gratuitously by whomever initially penned it at Shakesville. Give them a read, it’s awesome.)
Anyway, I have a hard enough time feeling happy just because of my wacky brain chemistry. Why not be happy in the wonderful body I have, that is so perfectly tuned to keep me safe in times of famine? 😉 I have too many cards stacked against me in the deck, it isn’t worth the fight just to keep losing, over and over and over, because I’ve already tried that route and it SUCKED. Being put in Weight Watchers in middle school by my mother SUCKED. Being on every fad diet for the following ten years or so SUCKED. I’m tired of it. It’s time to stop worrying and learn to love the bombshell I am. 😉