I’ll be the first to admit that this is a terrible name for a post but it’ll make sense later. And don’t worry, this isn’t a “history of scissors” type of post (though it would be fascinating!).
This evening I did something that I haven’t done in quite some time: I bought a swim suit. I know, I know – ground breaking information! For me it is anyway. I’ve had the desire to go swimming for years now – despite being tortured in my childhood by swimming lessons and lifeguard classes I actually miss it.Who would have thought that would be possible!
Anyway, while I was trying on this teal Nike tankini that I eyed a few months ago I couldn’t help but think about how this would not have been possible a year ago. You see a year ago I was living in what I think was a horrid city, far from any form of human life or happiness. Since I needed an escape from work I started going to the gym, sometimes twice a day. I was happy because I was killing my fitness goals. However, it was quickly turning into an obsession – an obsession where I needed to complete all sets even though my muscles were failing, show at up 6am even though I was running on 4 hours of sleep, and continue to fuel my body in a way that made me leaner without nurturing it.
The last point is key. I was cutting so much out of my diet that I was barely eating and satisfied cravings by drinking calorie-free flavoured water, coffee, and tea. All just to lose the last bits of fat and build the extra muscle. I was the smallest I ever was in my adult life – a size 4. Yet I could have showed you how obese I was by pulling on the little bit of fat that existed around my waist or arms. It consumed me every day to a point where I could come home from the gym just collapse in my doorway crying wishing I could just get rid of it or waking up every morning praying that I lost at least 1/4 of a pound overnight. Worse – I could not tell you how many times I wanted to grab the kitchen scissors and just cut it all off. I was so tempted to on a daily basis but then common sense stepped in. Looking back it was the lowest point that I have ever reached. I’m so glad that I’ve made huge improvements since that dark time. I still have a long way to go but I need to learn how to love myself in the present. Yes it’s fine to have fitness goals – to want to run a 10k or to start drinking more water. But you can’t let it deteriorate your mental health and that’s the hardest part.
Fortunately there is a way out of it – surround yourself with positive people who believe in you and support you in everything you do. These are the people that not only create a positive environment around you but they also make you start believing that you’re a pretty awesome person just the way you are. And believe it when people tell you that you’re beautiful and don’t question it, and take the second helping of ice cream if they ask. (And if that person happens to be insanely hot, beautiful, funny, smart, athletic, and tells you how beautiful you are every single day – keep him and don’t let go.) At the end of the day, focusing on the great things in your life and how much happiness it brings trumps any form of therapy or treatment that money could buy. It’s a source of all that is good and makes you believe that it only gets better from here. (oh yea…and throw those damn scissors out!!)