I’m reading a book called Real Women Scrap, in which the author, Tasra Dawson, mentions a phenomenon (well-known to scrapbookers) of the photographer mother who conveniently avoids being in the photos herself.  One paragraph stuck with me all day today: “Years from now, we will look back and regret not letting anyone take a picture of us… Friends and family won’t care if we lack trim figures or flawless faces. As hard as it is to grasp, they want us – just as we are.”

More to the point, I imagine, is that they have us just as we are.  As much as I might like to think so, not one of the extra pounds I carry right now is invisible to the naked eye.  The dimpled elbows and extra chin and bloaty belly are as much a part of my current reality as my more-permanent features, my smile and my cheeks and my forehead-which-shineth-like-a-beacon.  So I’ve decided to breathe through some discomfort and release a little perfectionism today by posting my real, actual weight on the internet.  In public.  Right out there.  Today I weigh 186 pounds.

It’s not the 93 pounds I weighed at 16, nor the 113 I weighed when I got home from Ireland after college, nor the 133 I weighed when I got married, nor the 203 I weighed on the day my beautiful child was born.  It’s not any of the countless numbers, high and low, that I have seen on the scale on any of the days I’ve lived so far.  It’s definitely not a perfect number for a 5’3″ female;  the CDC informs me, “Your BMI is 32.9, indicating your weight is in the Obese category for adults of your height.  For your height, a normal weight range would be from 104 to 141 pounds.”  The CDC is correct.

The point of this little TMI-sharing exercise?  Accepting my reality.  Taking responsibility for knowing where this journey begins.  Acknowledging that the choices I make and the actions I do or do not take have a profound influence on myself and my family.  Attempting to step back into the picture by looking honestly at myself and realizing that, while my choices have allowed my current body weight to reach an unhealthy level, I have both the strength and the ability to make new choices.

Not perfect choices, just better choices.

  • {Perfectionism} released:  Whew… I think that “release attempted” might be more accurate.  This isn’t as easy as putting old books in a box for Goodwill.  It’s going to take some serious deep breathing!
  • {Body Fat} released: Rode a bike for the first time in years, for all of 20 minutes, to break in my brand-new helmet.  Pulled weeds for an hour and a half.  Full disclosure: Ate Beaverton Bakery cake at my cousin’s wedding shower.  Mmmm…..
  • {Clutter} released: Cleaned off the shoe racks, porch and garage.  Said goodbye to 4 pairs of sneakers, 2 pairs of hiking boots, and 3 pairs of soccer cleats.

Toledo” by Steve Snodgrass  / CC BY